Are contractors and supply house employees on the same wavelength?

Those in any link in the supply chain can become frustrated with others over a range of issues — from not receiving parts in a timely manner, to poor attitudes, to delayed paper trails.

Genetron University is one example of how wholesalers are trying to help inform, educate, and develop industry people. Sponsored by Honeywell, these programs are focused on delivering a curriculum to all links of the supply chain, including contractors, wholesalers, and oem’s.

While the Genetron name is closely identified with refrigerants, the university is targeted toward the management side of the wholesale business. All courses are customized and developed for the company requesting the curriculum. Course offerings reach out to executives, key staff, branch delivery capability, sales, and contractor development. The contractor program is cosponsored by the wholesaler and can be conducted for one or several contractors.

Through the years, Genetron University has worked with wholesalers and contractors of all sizes, studied and researched the supply chain and wholesale business, and talked with contractors and manufacturers to learn the real needs of wholesalers.


According to Billy Bastl, who designs and teaches many of the courses, the present curriculum includes 16 programs, such as branch management for the future, account sales, building partnerships, and effectively managing the counter.

He suggested that a basic starting program for a wholesaler should include either business unit or branch strategic planning. This includes strategic thinking and planning for the future growth and success of the business.

Executives at one supply house that used the program a year ago noted that during a strategic planning session, “We decided that one of our greatest opportunities for increasing sales was to enhance our level of customer service to previously unassigned ‘house accounts.’ We then contacted Bill Bastl with our concept, and Billy responded by customizing a training program designed specifically to provide our inside counter personnel with the skills to take ownership of selected ‘house accounts.’ This resulted in a realistic game plan to increase sales and elevate our customer service.”

Another participating wholesaler appreciated that the training is geared to the needs of hvacr supply houses. They mentioned that “Bill’s close association with our industry for these past number of years makes him much more creditable than consultants who do not know our specific business.”

Linda DeFranco, marketing specialist and Genetron University program coordinator, schedules the programs and works with the wholesalers. She said programs that go the smoothest are those that are planned weeks and months in advance regarding appropriate facilities and material.

Contractors interested in the University should contact their local Genetron refrigerants wholesaler for information.

Publication date: 04/01/2002