Master Samurai Tech Academy Blog | Appliance Repair Training

Is Online Appliance Repair Training Right For You?

Posted on March 10, 2016 by - Academy Talk, Business Talk, Career Talk, Tech Talk

Online appliance repair training at Master Samurai TechOnline learning may seem like the new kid on the block, but it is really just a new and improved delivery format of the old “correspondence course school” model for training that has been around for over 100 years.

Online appliance repair training is a proven and effective way to improve technical skills for the right kind of student. How do you know what the right kind of student is? That's exactly what I'm going to explain in this post!

The strengths of the online training model are many:

  • on-demand
  • self-paced
  • affordable (few if any hard copies of material to produce)
  • easily updatable
  • interactive
  • multimedia

However, there is one component that is critical to the success of online learning that cannot be provided by the online school: student motivation.

Of course, student motivation is a necessary ingredient for any type of education to be effective, but at a traditional brick-and-mortar school there is a regular face-to-face interaction with the instructor that can help to keep the student accountable.

At the Master Samurai Tech Academy, we do everything we can to encourage our students, to provide accountability via quizzes and exams, and to give them help when they need it. However, we are not there with the student day in and day out.

To achieve a successful outcome with the MST Academy, a student must have one of these two characteristics:

  1. Self-motivation with a strong desire to learn (gets help when needed, works to improve test scores), or
  2. A supervisor who is keeping a close eye on the student’s progress (more on how to do that here).

When one of these two factors are in place, then the results of learning appliance repair in an MST Academy online training course can be spectacular! When neither are in place, then the results are something less than that.

So, before investing in any online training, evaluate your situation honestly. If you are signing yourself up, evaluate your commitment and motivation to doing what it takes to achieve the results you want. If you are signing up techs who are under your supervision, set up a system where you will monitor their progress closely and intervene when necessary.

Team Samurai is dedicated to excellence in appliance repair training. Our online training courses are a comprehensive and cost-effective way to improve technical skills. And we offer several powerful interactive teaching resources to help you understand the material:

  1. Interactive question and answer help in the Student Forums where students post questions about their coursework and we reply with additional instructional explanations. This can go back and forth quickly as many times as it takes until the student grasps the concepts they’re trying to understand. But it requires the student to have the initiative to ask a question. If the student doesn’t ask, we can’t help!
  2. Regular, live webinar meetings with the Samurai. We call these meetings Office Hours. Think of the webinars like Office Hours at a regular school where students can drop by for extra instruction and ask questions about their course work, live and in real-time.
  3. Manually-graded open answer questions on the Midterm and Final Exams in the Fundamentals course. These open-answer questions allow us to see inside the student’s head so-to-speak and identify more clearly how a student is misunderstanding a particular concept. We can then work with the student to resolve this misunderstanding.

If you bring your effort, energies, and motivations to the table, we have the tools in place to ensure that you WILL learn how to be a better technician!

Keeping Track of Student Progress

Posted on March 1, 2016 by - Academy Talk

Whether you want to track your own progress or that of a tech under your supervision, we have a great "at-a-glance" tool for you!

The Members Area page shows the progress and grades for each course a student is enrolled in. When you log in to MasterSamuraiTech.com this is the page that you'll be taken to first. If you are already logged in, you can just click on your name in the upper right hand corner of the window to get there.

Here's an example of what you'll see at the Members Area.

Members Area 1

You can get a more detailed report for each course by clicking on the course title.

Members Area 2

 
If you are supervising an MST Academy student, then all you need to know is his or her username and password to be able to keep track of their progress and performance.

“Where can I hire good appliance repair techs?”

Posted on February 29, 2016 by - Academy Talk, Business Talk

I talk to lots of appliance service company managers and many of them are asking, "Where can I hire good techs?" This is the wrong question! You won't find any good techs in the appliance repair trade because there are so few of them. And techs you do find with experience generally still do not have sufficient technical skills or they may have attitude/people skill problems.

The right question is, "How can I cost-effectively train someone to be a great appliance tech?"

You're going to have much better results by hiring someone based based on character: Do they have a good work ethic? Will they show up for work on time (or at all) and sober? Do they seem to have good people skills? Do they have a willingness and ability to learn, in other words, are they trainable? Once you've found someone with good character, then add the technical skills with training.

Here's the bottom line: You can't change character with training. But you CAN change technical skills inexpensively and effectively with the online tech training here at the Master Samurai Tech Academy.

 

Master Samurai Tech to Provide Online Appliance Repair Training for Mr. Appliance

Posted on February 14, 2016 by - Academy Talk

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

New London, NH, USA, February 14, 2016 - Master Samurai Tech, a nationally-recognized online appliance repair training academy, has been selected to provide technical training to Mr. Appliance franchisees and technicians.

Master Samurai Tech will create a custom training website exclusively for Mr. Appliance franchisees, incorporating the online technical courses from the Master Samurai Tech Academy. The custom Mr. Appliance site will launch in spring of 2016.

Mr. Appliance LLC is the largest appliance service franchise company in North America. Entrepreneurs have been starting new appliance repair businesses under the franchise brand of Mr. Appliance since 1996 and benefitting from the nationally-recognized Mr. Appliance brand.

The Master Samurai Tech Academy was founded in 2014 by Scott and Susan Brown, who have over two decades of experience in the appliance service industry, both running a service company and providing support and training for technicians online.

“Sometime during the last three decades, critical troubleshooting skills have gotten lost in the appliance service industry,” says 56-year-old Scott Brown, aka, Samurai Appliance Repair Man, “As a result, most working techs today do not possess these skills and there’s a huge need for trained appliance service technicians to service today’s computer-controlled appliances.”

"With this training resource, Mr. Appliance technicians can now get the training they need to master the troubleshooting strategies and techniques required to successfully service modern appliances, resulting in higher First Call Completion rates and greater customer satisfaction," Brown added.

“The proven and effective training courses at the Master Samurai Tech Academy are appropriate and affordable for both new and experienced techs,” says 50-year-old Susan Brown, aka, Mrs. Samurai. “Many working techs today have never received comprehensive, structured education on the digital and analog skills required to troubleshoot and repair modern appliances. These skills include: basic electricity, electric circuit analysis, reading schematics and using them to troubleshoot, single- and poly-phase electric motors, digital communications, and refrigeration systems.”

Learn more about Master Samurai Tech and their online appliance tech training courses at their website: http://mastersamuraitech.com

Contact:
Scott M. Brown
scott@mastersamuraitech.com
mastersamuraitech.com
phone number: 603-290-5516

ENDS

Why We Attend the Annual Service Training Institute

Posted on January 19, 2016 by - Academy Talk, Business Talk, Tech Talk

ASTI 2016Managing schedules (and time, in general) is a common problem, especially for people in service businesses, like ours. Everything tends to be emergency driven, and we feel pressure from the demands of customers and all the other aspects of running a business. The result of constant fire-fighting is burnout.

When we stop learning and creating, we stop growing and life becomes routine, tedious, and boring. We need to deliberately set aside time to do things that that help us grow. Recreation (literally, re-creation) is one form of this. But another equally important form is training and honing our craft, and experiencing those "Ah-hah!" moments when we gain a deeper understanding of the technology we work with every day.

It is vital that we MAKE the time for some big-picture work on our business. This is why annual training events, like ASTI, are so beneficial. Not only are you in a different physical location-- taken out of your regular work space-- but you're reuniting with old friends, meeting new Brethren in the Craft, and learning tons of cool new stuff, both business and technical.

With the Master Samurai Tech Academy, we have an additional reason for attending ASTI: to get the word out on the comprehensive, cost-effective appliance tech training that we offer online! We'll have a booth again and will be running an ASTI special, but also raffling off a free enrollment in our Fundamentals of Appliance Repair training course to anyone who stops by our booth for a visit.

Speaking of the MST Academy, a recent benefit we’ve added for our students is regular Office Hours live technical training webinars. I’ll usually have a special presentation on technical topics of particular interest to appliance techs. Some of the past topics we’ve talked about are:

  • Troubleshooting Strategies for Computer-Controlled Appliances
  • Digital Communications in Appliance Repair
  • Reading Tech Sheets and Schematics
  • Diodes and Rectification
  • Split-phase motors: theory of operation, types, and applications in appliances
  • Voltage and Voltage Drops in Electric Circuits
  • Techniques for Measuring Voltage without Getting Head-Faked by Open Neutrals and Ghost Voltages
  • Series and Parallel Circuits
  • Open Q&A on Student Coursework

I conduct these webinars using Join.me, the best service of its kind out there on the web today. I can pull up schematics and tech sheets for us to talk about and use the whiteboard app to whip out some sketches and talk through circuits.

Another big benefit of doing these regular, live training webinars has been that we've gotten a real-time look into how, specifically, students are struggling to understand basic electricity, circuits, and schematics, and we’ll add additional videos and instructional material to the courses to address these trip points. This month alone (January 2016) we’ve added three new videos to the Fundamentals of Appliance Repair training course as a direct result of the Office Hours webinars! Here’s a 2-minute excerpt from a video we recently added to the Fundamentals course:

 

Do you know the answer?

We posted this clip on our Facebook page and got all kinds of different answers which confirms what we already knew: there’s lots of learnin’ to be done out there in the appliance tech community on basic circuits! And if you don’t know basic circuits, there’s just no way you can effectively use schematics to troubleshoot modern appliances.

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