Universities and technical colleges teach a lot of valuable things that can be utilised in the workplace but there are some essential skills that simply can’t be taught in a lecture theatre. The values of hard work, understanding priorities, taking care of people, these are things that must be learned through experience. Knowledge can be gained, but if people aren’t taken care of, a workplace will struggle to thrive.
Today’s guest is Heath Hamilton and his life is a great example of someone who has taken an alternative route, gaining his depth of knowledge through life experience. Struggling with dyslexia, he left school at the age of 13 and began working on his family farm. With an inherent love for machinery and doing things with his hands, he developed a keen interest in trucks which eventually led him into a long and successful career in the mining industry.
In his farming days, Heath was fortunate enough to be surrounded by good people who taught him the ropes and helped to bring out his strengths. In those early years, he learned the importance of valuing people and recognising what each individual can bring to a workplace. In this episode, Heath shares some of his invaluable pieces of wisdom gained through hard work, observation and good old fashioned experience.
Some Topics That We Cover
[2:00] – Where Heath’s career first began at a very early age
[3:50] – Was driving trucks from the young age of 18 after many years experience working on the farms and leaving school at 13 years old
[5:30] – Had his first job in the mines hauling coal on road trains
[7:00] – The career progression and experience lead Heath to become a partner in a business that he is still with today
[8:25] – Instilling a culture of care for the equipment with your staff
[10:00] – The process of transitioning into a management/supervisory role
[11:10] – Doing the little things that you can to get the most out of your components
[12:10] – What made the transition into management more difficult for Heath
[14:00] – A time when Heath achieved a great outcome from his assets and the elements that enabled that to occur
[15:52] – Couldn’t reduce the scheduled down-time, but were still able to achieve a great outcome
[18:00] – Various learning curves involved with new equipment
[20:45] – Techniques used to understand the condition of the equipment
[22:30] – How to go about figuring out whether you’re getting the best quality out of your assets
[22:50] – Having staff that have been working together for many, many years allows for the growth and understanding of the assets overtime
[23:38] – How maintenance on road train assets is remarkably different from other mining machinery and maintenance
[25:04] – Focus on the people that you have working for you – their particular skill sets and the experience that they have to bring to the table
[27:10] – Go and look at the gear, and you’ll be able to see the work quality just stands out with the right people maintaining the right equipment
[27:48] – Dealing with pressure from people who don’t understand the fleet requirements and costs to fix equipment or maintain it
[30:00] – Going into a reactive workplace, how a focus on fixing the culture and working with the right people need to be addressed first