Kourtney Miller’s background is as diverse as they come. Her entry to the industry occurred at Jackman Services, where she served in the warehouse as an HVAC division manager for three years. From there, she spent three years with Integrity Air Conditioning, six years with Carrier Enterprises, and two years with Insco Distributing.
“When working for a local contractor I was a frequent customer at Carrier,” said the now 36-year-old Miller. “The person who hired me told me that he ‘hired his problem,’ as they were having many customer service problems at the time and since I was an active customer, I would be able to provide a different perspective to help fix the issues they were having at the branch.”
For the last three years, she’s served as a sales manager with Century A/C Supply.
“I was a territory manager looking for advancement and a new challenge,” Miller said. “Due to the huge amount of growth that Century A/C was facing bringing on the York product line, they were looking for a sales manager so Todd [Shadden, vice president of Century A/C's York division] reached out to me to run and grow the sales team in north Texas.”
Miller said her well-versed resume has helped her excel in her current position as an HVACR distribution sales manager.
“Understanding the other side of the counter has enabled me to make decisions that are best for all parties,” she said. “Having that insight has definitely helped me to better understand what contractors are facing.”
Compared to when she entered HVACR distribution, Miller said the industry is completely different.
“I consider myself to have many old-school techniques,” she said. “I feel like I learned this industry through trial and error with no one paying attention to everything around me. The industry has changed so much, and I don’t think anything is the same as it was 17 years ago.”
When it comes to advice, Miller encouraged young prospects to be a resource to everyone and retain a positive attitude.
“The ‘new kids’ don’t have the customer service mindset that people talk to people,” she said. “They think a text or an email is appropriate for building relationships within their business. It’s difficult for them to understand that the way of business is different than the way of life and how they communicate with their friends and family.
“Although this industry is huge, it is still very small,” she continued. “Do what you say you’re going to do and work harder than the person next to you.”
Miller is driven to be the best she can be
“Knowledge is key,” she said. “I understand that I’m not the smartest, most tenured, or oldest person in the industry, but my shear dedication to my professional and personal goals shine in whatever I try and do.”
Miller aspires to one day transfer that knowledge into a general manager role within an HVACR distribution company.
“I strongly feel that people do business with people, and I know I would not be where I am or become who I’ve become without the people who have crossed my path along the way,” she said. “The bosses, co-workers, employees, customers, and vendors have all played a huge part in my journey.”
When not at work, Miller is busy raising her three children, Kansys, 12, Branson, 10, and Karsyn, 10, whom she identifies as her greatest accomplishment.
Publication date: 10/17/18