Editor’s Note: The following remarks were made in response to the “Is Anybody Talking About HVAC?” Commentary article by Kyle Gargaro, published Sept. 15 in The NEWS.

Train and Nurture the Millennials

Thanks for your commentary on hiring. I agree with everything you said. We have a great industry that offers fulfilling careers, which we have kept hidden. If we could just convince our high school guidance counselors that our industry is a viable option, we would be moving in the right direction. Over the years, we have found a key to successful hiring: Always be on the lookout for great young kids and, contradictory to what everyone thinks, they are out there. We’ve had referrals from our banker, a local plumber referred his son, employees’ children can be a good option, local neighborhood kids, friends of your kids, high school athletes, a local wholesaler referred his son, and the list goes on. Hire the right person, train him, and you are on the road to success. To encourage them to choose our company, we give a 50 percent scholarship to our local York Technical Institute, which has a great HVAC program. The other key is to have an organization where your technicians are more than a number and solely a profit center. They see right through that. If you treat them like a person and family, make them feel important, encourage them, take an interest in them, and train them in life skills and technical skills — a top service tech will emerge. We have a training program for our millennials to help them see the world and its possibilities from more than their narcissistic world view. It’s a slow, ongoing process, but it results in great, young, and teachable employees. This is really basic stuff, just like wellness, diet, and exercise. We all know what to do, but doing it consistently and being able see the end product in the midst of the storm is the challenge. The “icing on the cake” is that it is also one of the most rewarding things you will ever do. Molding and shaping a young person’s life into success is as good as it gets.

Joe Ranck
Robert H. Ranck Inc.
Lancaster, Pennsylvania

Publication date: 10/27/2014 

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