Everywhere that you can possibly go, as a customer, shares something in common with other places. There are people that work there. Earning a living. The coffee shop. The restaurant. The library. The laundromat. The Brantford Cyclepath. Ask anyone who deals with the public and they will tell you that it’s interesting to be able to view things from both sides of the service counter.
Working in a bike shop is pretty interesting. It’s never boring. A bike shop is sort of like taking two different businesses… a store that you go to and buy bikes and parts, and a garage that you take bikes to for repairs…and mashing them both together to make one business that handles sales and service of these awesome machines.
One day you might find yourself repairing or tuning up bikes in the service area of the shop. It’s always fun to get a bit grimy and take something that isn’t working very well and utilize your ever increasing bag of tricks to make it run better. There’s a huge sense of accomplishment in doing that. That’s the great thing about being a bike mechanic. Your knowledge expands more and more every year as technology changes. You can look back over time and measure real growth.
Or you might find yourself cracking open and building the latest crop of bikes complete with the newest technologies. You get to see them up close before anybody else does. The general public is still rabidly researching pictures and info on the internet. YOU just built it. Let me tell you, Christmas doesn’t even come close to that. And it lasts all year.
Then there’s the part that can most certainly be the most fun thing to do in a bike shop. Talking to people who love bikes, ABOUT bikes. It’s great to be able to help someone discover that next new bike. Show them something that they perhaps hadn’t considered before. Or a cool new part or accessory that will enhance their riding experience. People are really happy when they get bike stuff. Helping a little kid pick out his or her “first bike ever” NEVER gets old. (picking out the right bell is always THE most important part. It takes longer than choosing the bike).
There’s most certainly a sense of pride that comes with working in a bike shop. There’s an involvement with the local cycling community that is fairly wide in scope. Mountain bikers will most likely tend to associate with the local mountain bike crowd. Road cyclists with road cyclists. Everyone hangs out with their own type. But a shop employee? He hangs out with everyone. One day he’s on his road bike, tackling a century with some local road riders. The next day he’s blasting singletrack with a group of mountain bikers. Another day? He’s at the coffee shop socializing with some local commuters. Or riding railtrail with the couple that bought new bikes this week. You get to know the entire mixture of the people who ride bikes in your area. Get ready to have people wave and give a friendly nod where ever you go. Life in this fishbowl is social in nature.
So anyway…if any or all of this happens to appeal to you (or someone you know), the best part about bike shops is that sometimes they happen to be on the lookout for new people who just happen to love bikes. It’s actually a very rare event because honestly, who ever wants to leave? It just so happens that WE are looking for a few new employees to add to our staff. Don’t be afraid. Relax. We were ALL noobs once. (I didn’t know how to adjust index shifting when I first walked in). The education in bike knowledge that you’ll get is invaluable. And, like I mentioned above, it’s fun and rewarding. Oh… and you actually get paid to show up here and be with bikes every day! Can you believe it?!
Why not visit our shop at 225 Fairview Drive, here in Brantford of course, and bring that resume with you. It could very well be the start of something interesting!