Following high school, Scott Terfehr had worked a few different jobs. Recognizing that his passion lied elsewhere, he pursued a career in HVAC by attending courses at Minnesota State Community and Technical College (MSCTC).

After graduating, he was drawn to HVACR distribution.

“One of my teachers suggested I look into a career with Gustave A. Larson Co.,” said Terfehr, 36. “Luckily, they were hiring when I was looking, so it worked out very well for me.”

Over his 13-year career with Gustave A. Larson, Terfehr has remained at the counter, right where he feels most comfortable.

“I really enjoy the customer service aspect of the job,” he said. “I’ve learned a great deal about all the different products we sell and have gained a great deal of knowledge through manufacturer training.”

Over the years, Terfehr has soaked up industry knowledge from his peers and customers like a sponge.

“I’ve learned a lot from the techs I deal with on a daily basis,” he said. “There are so many different products in our industry, it’s tough to know them all. I’m not quite an encyclopedia, but I’m comfortable enough now where I at least know what the part is and where I can find the necessary information.”

The prospects entering the industry today are much more familiar with technology than those who joined 10 years ago, Terfehr said.

“The kids getting into the industry today are more reliant on phones and apps,” he said. “I grew up in a generation when that stuff was just being introduced. We didn’t have screens in our hands all the time. I’m still young enough to where I can use the technology, but I know how to live without it.”

Living without it is not a strategy Terfehr utilizes at the counter. 

“Technology has allowed those in this industry to become less dependent on guessing,” he said. “We now have tools that can help us narrow stuff down and troubleshoot much more efficiently. For example, ice machines used to utilize mechanical controls, and now they’re all controlled by computerized controls, which help the equipment meet the government's regulatory needs. Companies like Sporlan now have the Zoomlock, and press fittings are catching on big time right now.”

Terfehr, who is an Emerson Copeland Technical Specialist and graduate of HARDI’s Counter Specialist Certification program, is passionate about this industry and enjoys coming to work every day.

“I’m really happy with what I’m doing right now,” he said. “Down the line, if I were to move from this position, I’d like to do something in outside sales.”

Whether its attending manufacturer training or reading trade publications, Terfehr said it’s important for those in the industry to continue expanding their knowledge base.

“If you think you can stop learning, you’ll never make it,” he said. “Things change every day. It’s important for us all to stay on top of them.”

When not working, Terfehr enjoys spending time with his spouse and young child as well as fishing and hunting pheasants.

Publication date: 01/01/18