RCBs view of labourers?

#1
Apologies is this should be in one of the stickies above, but I thought as it was quite a specific question it should maybe have a thread of its own. Sorry if I'm wrong!

I currently work in an office doing mind numbingly boring admin work. After just 4 months it is enough to tell me that I would not be cut out for an office job (not that I ever thought I would be anyway...). As I'm only a temp worker I am due to finish next week. One of my friends is a scaffolder and has (drunkenly) offered me a job as a labourer for his firm. In my equally drunken state I agreed. However, upon sobering up I've thought about it a bit more. The way I see it there are plusses and minuses:

Plus:
1. Outdoor work (I'm desperate to get out of the office)
2. Hard physical work (will keep me in good shape)
3. Pay is about £100 a week more than I currently earn
4. Hours are shorter than I currently work (0800-1500 as opposed to 0730-1700)

Minus:
1. I may be working with morons (terribly snobbish to say, I know, but my friend admits that some/most of the other blokes aren't too bright)
2. Looked down upon at RCB??? By this I mean because it is hardly intellectually demanding it may go against me at RCB.

Basically what I'm asking (in an extremely round-about way) is am I correct with minus pt 2? Would this go against me? If so I'll stick it out at the office and try extra hard not to throw my PC out of the window. :evil:

Any help/advice on this is greatly appreciated.

Thanks in advance,

BB
 
#2
Dont do it i was a scaffolders labourer for a while and its feckin hard work.....theres a lot easier ways of making a livin
 

napier

LE
Moderator
Kit Reviewer
#3
BB,

My temp jobs before I joined the Army were:

Removal man
Delivery driver for a bakery
Machine operator in an egg packing factory
Surveying assistant at a firm of architects

You appear to have perfectly valid reasons for changing jobs, and RCB will be more interested in you as the sum of your personal qualities, not what jobs you have done. As long as you regularly read the broadsheets and keep abreast of current affairs you should be alright. As to the 'moron' part, you may be surprised. Many guys doing manual work are brighter than some you'll meet in the Mess, and don't forget the socio-economic background of many soldiers will be little different to those you will work with. A spell working 'at the coalface' should do you some good and also help to dispel some of your prejudices (although it might also confirm some).
 
#5
I deployed not too long ago abroad with an RN Lt. Really really decent bloke (he did have some snags though!!). Over a couple of beers he informed me before he joined the RN as a commissioned officer he used to work for NAAFI.

Says it all really don't you think???
 
#6
An interesting query BubbleBlower and one that I have experience on.

Background; I laboured during my Gap Year for 7 months, worked bloody hard moved up to 'Site Assistant' and eventually into a management role where I was trusted enough to run a £3 million site by myself for days at a time. All good stuff, basically got offered a job for life at the end of it.

Fast forward to a Potential Officer Development Course I did a couple of weekends ago and the subject I got pinged to do a 5 minute lecturette on was: "An average Labourer's day on a building site". I think its fair to say the DS was suitably interested, dare I say impressed?

A point I touched on in my lecturette was the similarities between the construction industry and the military; male dominated environment, deemed a 'tough' job and leadership also plays an important part. Another important parralel is that although the average labourer and soldier may not be packing as many brain cells as an average office worker, they're a damn sight more down to earth and I'm studying Project Management for Construction at uni so its clear who I'd rather work with!

My advice, for what its worth, would be that choosing to Labour is an honourable decision providing your doing it for the right reasons i.e. you're intending to better yourself by doing it rather than it being an easy way out of a job that you are bored of.
 
M

Mr_Logic

Guest
#7
BubbleBlower

Using your own reasoning I would go for the labouring job as it will get you away from something you clearly don't like. At Westbury they will be far more interested in your base level IQ, aptitude and potential than how you currently obtain beer tokens.

The good news is that you have clearly examined the advantages and disadvantages of this situation and presented a coherent argument in well written English. If you do this at RCB, all other things being equal, being a labourer will not affect you chances in the slightest, unless you have a really stuffy DS.

Mr Logic

P.S. Wear a good suit and keep reading the papers (at Westbury, not on the scaffolding).
 

cpunk

LE
Moderator
#8
RCB certainly won't look down on you for having been a labourer, if the subject comes up at all. My guess is actually that it will be plus point for you if anything, as it shows a certain amount of initiative and get up and go, for all the reasons that you've outlined in the plus side of your equation. My own two major areas of employment as a student/prior to joining the army were as a bouncer and a waiter but I don't recall them being mentioned at RCB.

Just be careful you don't fall off any scaffolds!
 
#9
After so long as a civilian I hesitated coming onto this thread. However, whatever it might or might not do for your potential military career, I can speak with experience what getting your hands dirty can do. It's the other thing that will make a man of you. Go for it. Don't ram it down people's throats what a hero you are for joining those not normally associated with what is deemed to be success. Very best of luck either way.
 
#10
OsamaBinLiner said:
It p1sses me off beyond belief that every night I have to change into a collar, tie and jacket to sit in a mess to eat my dinner, in the company of my 'peers' and discuss how much my house is worth, what car I drive etc etc.
Am I the only person who found this comment seriously odd? Sounds like you have some issues there chap.
 
#11
Stick with scaffolding for a while - there is a huge amount of cash involved. Public liability insurance (a major expense for scaffolders) has halved over the last year but scaffold prices have not reduced to reflect this. A good mate of mine (and former para) has a small provincial scaffolding firm and is making a mint.
 
#12
Lord_Wentworth said:
OsamaBinLiner said:
It p1sses me off beyond belief that every night I have to change into a collar, tie and jacket to sit in a mess to eat my dinner, in the company of my 'peers' and discuss how much my house is worth, what car I drive etc etc.
Am I the only person who found this comment seriously odd? Sounds like you have some issues there chap.
I was commenting on the extremely poor quality of my mess and the difficulty I have fitting in there, previous civvy employment regardless. A question of things not living up to my original expectations. So I suppose you're right, chap.
 
#13
I found the comment very strange as well; what kind of Regiment is he serving with that 'livers-in' own property?

Subbies (capts and below) who live in are supposed to spend all their cash on fat women and alcohol. All we used to talk about was tits and arrse, recent sport (Regimental, not gay FA premier league rubbish), getting lashed and discussion on more tits and arrse.

It does get boring after a while though (about 11 years).
 
#14
If you are good, they would probably look favourably on someone who had done something other than straight University - if you can talk about it. That said, it's obviously not as good as building schools in Ethiopia........

They will want to know why you are a better option than any other labourer, i.e. what else were you doing while you were labouring.
 
#15
Take it from a bloke who's done it...

21 foot scaffold poles are f ucking heavy..... remember to keep that top finger pointed ... believe it or not it makes a difference.

when its cold ... they're colder...

when its wet... you are carrying your own personal drainpipe that will go up your sleeves and out of your trouserlegs...

Most of the blokes you'll be working with wont be NASA trainees, but you will have a giggle.

if someone asks you to hold a 21 footer up above your head on your first week whilst they "get something" ... dont .... they are about to p1ss down it.

It may seem like more money ... but consider the following equation.

buildings = self employed

Bad weather = no workee

No workee = no money... or sick pay... or holiday pay.... etc etc...

By all means give it a crack if its short term ... but look on any site and you wont see many old labourers of ANY sort.
 
#16
I never went down the officer route while I was in, not through shortage of intelligence, qualifications etc, but more due to the snobbery which is blindly apparent in such a role. Whether this is down to traditional values or perceptions I am not sure however I don't recall anybody doing a good hard days work has ever killed anyone.
As such the construction industry is second to none for earnings and indeed rewards for job satisfaction. I myself started a Landscape Design and Property maintenance company on leaving the mob and it's going very well. There are two jobs that are always needed in life, Builders and Funeral directors! We all need somewhere to live and when that stops we all die!
Of course some of the chaps in the construction industry are not "smarter than the average bear" but they are cogs in a machine, no different from your average infantryman or gunner. That is not by any means an insult, one of my guys is thicker than mince but if you need 7 ton of aggregate moving in a day he will do it and be happy looking at "his" full skip at the end of it! The bonus of working in construction is that at the end of the day there is actually something to show for your efforts rather than an empty In tray, which generally is full by 9 the next morning.
If you are good at your job and inherently have leadership qualities these will prevail quickly, and you will be rewarded as such and these will immediately be apparent on any interviewing panel/board. The fact that you are looking out to develop yourself is the most important, and if this is shown through a progression "from the ground up" so to speak this is all good, I'm sure Charles Worthington-Smythe exists in such a selection but it must be said we are no longer in the 1800's and I am sure you will be rewarded as such during the RCB.

Dave

p.s. Definately watch out for that old 21 footer trick! It's on a par with spirit level bubbles and left handed trowels!
 
#17
OsamaBinLiner said:
Lord_Wentworth said:
OsamaBinLiner said:
It p1sses me off beyond belief that every night I have to change into a collar, tie and jacket to sit in a mess to eat my dinner, in the company of my 'peers' and discuss how much my house is worth, what car I drive etc etc.
Am I the only person who found this comment seriously odd? Sounds like you have some issues there chap.
I was commenting on the extremely poor quality of my mess and the difficulty I have fitting in there, previous civvy employment regardless. A question of things not living up to my original expectations. So I suppose you're right, chap.
Quite!

Crusty
Colonel
 
#19
Thanks a lot for all the advice. On the basis of your comments I will definitely give it a go.

BubbleBlower said:
Minus:
1. I may be working with morons (terribly snobbish to say, I know, but my friend admits that some/most of the other blokes aren't too bright)
Hope this didn't make me sound like an arrogant arrse, but it is a genuine concern. To be honest, I hadn't considered this factor until another friend who works in the construction industry warned me off (though, as I say, I was very, very drunk...).

However, the only way I will find out is by giving it a go. As Napier said, it may dispel some of my prejudices and could even benefit me in the long term with regards to relating to people outside of my normal peer group. Besides, anything has to be better than sitting in front of a computer screen all day :wink: .

I have to say that I'm heartened to find that most of the posters on this thread seem to believe that it could actually be a benefit at RCB (or at the very least, a non-issue). This, I think, shows that the Army is more interested in your potential nowadays than recruiting from what could perhaps be seen as the more 'traditional' officer class. Though I suspect this has been the case for a long while.

Thanks again.

BB
 
#20
OsamaBinLiner said:
It p1sses me off beyond belief that every night I have to change into a collar, tie and jacket to sit in a mess to eat my dinner, in the company of my 'peers' and discuss how much my house is worth, what car I drive etc etc.
You're not a Gunner by any chance.......
 

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