Choose to Make Investments for the Industry's Future

[Editor’s note: This letter is in response to “The Young Guns of HVAC,” a three-part series that appeared in the June 18 and June 25 issues.]

How are you helping recruit and build the next generation of HVACR service technicians? It is up to us, the people who are currently in this business to do so. Yes, we need help from high school guidance counselors, out-placement services and military dischargers, but the brunt of the recruiting needs to come from us, the people who make a living from the industry, to help do so.

I am a second-generation service technician who worked his way up through the different posts and eventually launched a small commercial service company. I learned of this great industry through working with my father and his peers, sweeping the pipe fab shop floor, loading sheet metal trailers, or whatever was needed. The high-caliber people that I met along the way are what this industry is built upon and that carry it forward today.

We send our young men and women to school, either union apprenticeship or a trade school to learn the fundamentals, but in order to succeed, we must have on-the-job exposure, have someone mentoring them as they move forward, and have involved owners and managers who truly care about our trade and where it is heading.

There are many naysayers about the up-and-coming generation of young people and history proves there always has been. Our company finds good people with solid character and helps them move into learning positions, eventually helping them develop into the strong service technicians that we must have to serve our clients needs. Good people attract good people. Assemble a group of people of high character and strong morals and let the others go to the other contractors in the area. You will be rewarded by others with similar values wanting to join you and your company.

Without a doubt it will take extra time and more money versus what we have traditionally spent on training and coaching. With many, if not all of the OEMs developing their niche controls and logic, factory training is a must if you wish to compete in the new age of any facet of the HVAC industry. Choose to make a difference. Choose to make the investment in our future, find young people and help them get and stay on the right road toward becoming a star technician. It’s good business and it is the right thing to do!

J. Greg Crumpton
President and Founder AirTight Mechanical
Charlotte, N.C.

Make Products Easy to Use

[Editor’s note: This letter is in response to the editorial “Spoiled by Modern Conveniences,” July 9.]

I do agree with John R. Hall about spoiling your customer. One of the things we sell is service, and service may make the difference between us and our competitors. But this thing about these high-tech thermostats I do not agree with. We are a rep for HVAC products, including a particular high-tech thermostat. We have to have a committee meeting to figure out how to reset the thermostat. High-tech is OK, but it needs to be user friendly.

Rick Klein
Fischer Engineering Ltd.
New Orleans

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Publication date:08/27/2007