Dahl Truck & Auto Center is seeking motivated and hard working individuals to help take their business to the next level. The locally owned trucking and repair shop has the means to do so but lacks the employees.
By Melissa Anderson
Smaller communities like Langdon have difficulty not only attracting new people but keeping those who have grown up here as residents. Dahl’s sends representatives to attend the career fair in Wahpeton every year in hopes of finding new mechanics. There is also a home-grown effort to recruit those from the area. Dahl’s offers a contract that helps those young people seeking careers get the education they want for a future career.
“We would be willing to put some money towards those that want to learn the business,” Aaron Dahl said.
This willingness to help find a new generation of diesel mechanics can only go so far. Dahl noted that the offer to help train and the promise of a position upon graduating are not enough. Dahl Truck & Auto Center is not the only company in the field facing a shortage.
“You talk to other truck shops in Fargo and Grand Forks. Major towns run into the same problems. There is just not enough guys that want to get into this field, and it’s a struggle,” Dahl said.
Constantly advertising to attract new talent just to make expansion possible is a lesson in patience. Right now the busy shop is fully staffed, but the decision to continue advertising is to prevent the company from going backwards instead of forwards as they would like.
“We don’t want to not keep looking. We would always like to keep adding and growing,” Dahl said.
As some of their experienced mechanics look towards retirement, the company wonders how they will maintain the staff they have as the younger generations search for other avenues of income. Shop manager Earl Dunnigan believes that part of the problem is the lack of work ethic.
“They all want a paycheck, but they don’t want to do physical work,” Dunnigan said.
Part of the method of making Dahl’s an attractive place of employment to young workers is providing hands-on training at the shop. Dunnigan commented that while having a degree is useful, sometimes learning the ropes at the shop is just as good.
“We can teach them to do things the way we like them done,” Dunnigan said.
Even with all this effort and flexibility, Dahl doesn’t think there is much more that can be done to entice those that simply don’t have the drive and ambition.
“It’s disheartening when you see people like that. You know they could do a great job and yet do not want to work. That’s all over. That’s not just here,” Dahl said.
For more information concerning educational contracts and employment opportunities at Dahl Truck and Auto Center, please call 256-3930.