Painting Employability Skills

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Paint can be literally skin deep, but a good paint job or a bad one makes a world of difference in the look and feel of a building, office space, or home. While many people paint their own interiors, most have to hire a professional if they want a professional-quality job. And hiring a professional is often a must for exterior painting.

You do not need a degree, nor do you need to complete a specialized training program to paint, but in most states, you do need a license, and you must know how to paint properly in order to receive your license. You'll also need to get insurance that protects you from liability in case something goes wrong.

Painting interiors and exteriors are, in many ways, two separate jobs, as the types of paint and tools needed are different for each. You can choose to do one or both.

Employability skills required for painting jobs

As a painter, you will work for a contractor or work independently. If you choose to apply for a job with a contractor, you can use the skill lists below to help you assemble keywords for your resume and cover letter and to prepare for your interview. You should always read job descriptions carefully, as requirements can vary between seemingly similar positions.

As an independent, self-employed painter, you'll be looking for clients, not employers, and you'll rarely need a resume. However, you can still use the list to help determine if a career in painting is right for you.

Superior Painting Skills

If you're interviewing for a job, make sure you can address these topics. There is a good chance that one or all of these topics will be discussed. And, if you're looking for a career path, take a self-check to see if these skills are, or may be, among your strengths.

Communication skills

To satisfy a customer's needs, you must understand what the customer wants. Unfortunately, many people don't know how to clearly explain what they want, so you'll need to be able to extract more exact instructions or use your judgment to fill in the details. Remember that good communication means listening and respecting what the customer wants, not what you think they should want. You can make suggestions, but the property owner always has the last word.

Aesthetic sense

Most clients will need you to make at least some judgment calls in your work, and some will ask your advice directly. You need a strong sense of what looks good. Think of the workplace as a work of art.

Detail oriented

What makes a good, or even great, paint job is in the details, like sharp, clean edges, even layers, and well-adhered layers. A small mistake can subtly but significantly alter the appearance of the room or building.

Familiarity with the necessary tools

Painters use a variety of brushes, rollers, scrapers, wire brushes, sanders, and texturing tools to create different effects, and you need to know which ones to use for each circumstance. You should also know how to use each one efficiently and properly. Tool options differ between interior and exterior painting, and different tools may also be required to paint in different styles or textures. Special treatments and cleaning also require your own equipment and materials.

Familiarity with the materials needed

Paints vary not only in color, but also in texture, gloss, viscosity, drying time, and other factors. Then there are the primers, varnishes, sealers, and finishes, which also vary widely. Choose the wrong combination on the wrong surface and the paint could peel, crack, wash off or look bad.

Physical dexterity, strength and balance

Painters need good manual dexterity to achieve a good, clean coat. But you also need the strength and ergonomic skills to move equipment safely and efficiently, and a strong sense of balance so you don't fall off roofs and stairs.

Time management skills

Whether you're self-employed or an employee, chances are you spend most of your workday alone, or at least out of sight of your supervisor. Must be able to work well and efficiently without direct supervision. Self-employed painters must also be able to give accurate estimates of how long a job will take to complete.

List of general skills for painters

Review the general skills employers look for in candidates they hire for painting jobs. Skills will vary depending on the position you're applying for, so also review our list of skills listed by job and skill type.

Also, if you're thinking about a career change, think about all the skills you have under your belt. Several of these skills are transferable to other fields. Leverage your greatest assets when looking for a new line of work.

- Actively listen to customer preferences
- Wallpaper adhesive
- Aesthetic sensitivity
- Alignment of wallpaper patterns
- Arm and hand strength
- Scaffolding assembly
- Assign work to attendees
- Attention to details
- Cost calculation
- Calculation of quantities of materials needed
- Calculation of wallpaper quantities
- Surface cleaning before painting
- Cleaning of work space and equipment after work
- Collaboration
- Coordination of colors and patterns
- Cover spaces not intended for painting
- Customer service
- Establish a relationship with customers
- Filling cracks and holes with putty and putty
- Follow instructions from designers/decorators
- Recruitment of assistants
- Interview customers to determine their preferences
- Maintain adequate ventilation
- Maneuvering ladders
- Mathematical
- Measurement of spaces to be covered with paint
- Mix paints
- Neatness
- Networking for referrals
- Operation of painting equipment to spray large surfaces
- Organizational
- Physical resistance
- Planning projects
- Preparation of budgets for clients
- Problem solving
- Promotion of services
- Purchase of supplies
- Scheduling of multiple projects in coordination with other contractors
- Scraping and sanding for smooth surfaces
- Selection of equipment for the project.
- Select or recommend the right paint for the job
- Teamwork
- Time management
- working independently
- Working quickly with precision

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