The one-day apprentice: How to learn skills through Craigslist

So I’m reading through this blog and buried halfway into a decently long article, I smack into an idea I’d never considered before.

Now I like this guy’s attitude, so it’s common for me to find something interesting on his site. That’s why I read it after all. But this time the idea stuck out as something I should write about, highlight it, simply because it was buried in his post, not the entire theme of it, and I’d never heard of it before.

The article started by praising the benefits of using Craigslist. He talked about buying used appliances, books, motorcycles, cars, even tenants for his rental properties through the site. He mentioned that he’s even made friends when he’s traded things with other frugal traders.

And then he hit me with the idea I hadn’t heard before. He said once he posted an ad for an experienced roofer to come work alongside him for a day and teach him the trade. He paid the man for his labor, and they ended up becoming friends too.

The cool part, though, is that with one day’s wages for the roofer, he was able to recruit a hands-on instructor to teach him how to roof, to say nothing of the actual work they got done on the roof.

It strikes me that this could be a wonderful way to dip into a number of different trades, especially specialized skills that I might not necessarily want to make a living with but that might save me tons of money in the long-run if I learn how to tackle them on my own.

Roofing, plumbing, drywall, any construction work really, auto-repair work, maybe some computer stuff, cooking, cake making, carpet cleaning, card magic… heck, I’d teach people how to cut their own hair in two hours or something.

Just the idea of hiring someone to teach a skill while we do the work together instead of just hiring them to do it on their own… I like that.