Nelson apprentice Jed Haymes has impressed his clients and boss with his enthusiasm, communication skills and diligent approach. Jed discusses his work ethic, goals for the future and why he says he picked the best trade!

Three years ago, when Jed and his nursing student fiancée Courtney were newly engaged, they sat down to make a plan for their immediate future. They had two choices: get married sooner or put their careers ahead of tying the knot. They chose to put all their focus into their studies.

Now in the third year of his plumbing, drainlaying and gasfitting apprenticeship, Jed loves every minute on the job, and Courtney has just one year left of her nursing studies.

It’s little surprise that Jed had always wanted to be a tradie—a career path that runs in the family, with one brother a builder and the other an electrician. “Since my brothers ticked off the other trades, I decided to one-up them and pick the best trade,” he jokes.

It would appear he really has settled into the right career, as 28-year-old Jed brings a winning attitude towards his apprenticeship, with mentors, clients and peers describing him as mature and hardworking, a good communicator and a team player with plenty of initiative and determination to succeed.

He credits his parents for instilling a strong work ethic. “Both my parents work hard. I worked alongside my dad for a year in a factory, and he put his all into the job. I think that rubbed off on me,” he says.


Passion, pride & positivity

Jed is also known for his positive outlook, which he says is easy as he loves everything about his apprenticeship at Plumbing Services Nelson. “I work with an awesome crew—everyone is positive and eager to teach me. I try to come to work with a smile and bring good vibes to the team.”

Jed’s passion for learning means that Plumbing Services Nelson owner Glyne McLean feels confident Jed can take on challenges. “Although he hasn’t had much experience, I never worry he will make a hash of a job. If he’s not 100% sure how to do something he will get me on a video call to get it right,” Glyne says.

For Jed, it comes down to his desire to strive for success. “I want to learn how to do everything correctly so I am pretty picky. I do hold myself to a high standard, but giving my best to the job means I can feel proud of my work. I always aim to do better than last week,” he says.

No two jobs the same

So, what appeals the most about his training and trade choice? “I enjoy being on different sites and working with other trades. Every day is different, with a variety of work to do, so it’s never boring,” says Jed. “If you think about it, builders are often on the same site for a few months, but after a couple of days, we move on to new jobs with different challenges. So far, I’m enjoying the plumbing the most, but am looking forward to learning more about gasfitting.”

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I do hold myself to a high standard, but giving my best to the job means I can feel proud of my work.

- Jed Haymes

Recently, Jed worked on an early childhood centre in Richmond, with lots of miniature-sized toilets—a very different brief from the houses he’s often working on. He’s also been involved in a large architectural high-spec build, which required multiple fire sprinklers and had highly detailed bathroom plans.

As a business owner, Glyne appreciates that Jed is one of those people willing to go the extra mile. “He’s happy to help out over the weekend as needed,” he says. “And as a former health and safety rep, he stepped up to lead our weekly health and safety meetings.”

“Masterlink has been tremendous”

Jed was the first Masterlink apprentice for Plumbing Services Nelson, and Glyne says he’s set the bar high. “The experience boosted our confidence to add another Masterlink apprentice, Ben, to the team recently. Masterlink Regional Manager Sam Timlin has been tremendous in helping us to find the right fit for the team.”

Jed has made an impression on Sam too. “Jed was one of the three winners of a Plumbing World Scholarship at the 2022 NZ Plumbing Awards and has also just passed his registration exam for Plumbing with a great score of 81!”

By all accounts, Jed has a bright future ahead of him and big goals to match. “I’d like to have my own company one day,” he says. “That’s why I want to learn all aspects of plumbing—to expand my knowledge and not be one-dimensional.”

And, of course, eventually, he and Courtney will get that wedding they’ve been dreaming of too.

This article was written by Je T'Aime Hayr and first appeared in NZ Plumber magazine Feb-March 2023