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HVAC Service Technicians and NFL Quarterbacks

We all know that great HVACR Service Technicians are invaluable to your company, but have you ever considered how similarly the compare to NFL quarterbacks? Neither had we  — but check out this fun list of similarities!

The Top 10 Qualities a Great HVAC Service Technician Has In Common With an NFL Quarterback

 

1. AN EXCELLENT MEMORY
It’s not uncommon for NFL teams to have playbooks consisting of more than 50 running plays and up to 200 passing plays. The quarterback has to know them all. Likewise, today’s HVAC service technician has to remember how to maintain and repair hundreds of types of equipment made by dozens of manufacturers over several decades. What’s more, he also needs to be familiar with the local building codes and regulations.

 

2. KEEN PROBLEM-SOLVING ABILITY
A quarterback has to be able to think on his feet (literally) at the line of scrimmage. He must look for clues about the defensive coverage he’s facing, and react accordingly by calling an audible, rearranging the receivers, or calling a timeout if needed. A talented HVAC service technician has that same ability to size up the problem in front of him and see the solution even when it’s not obvious.

 

3. HARD-WORKING
The performance of the quarterback affects the team’s entire offense. If his throws are off-target, the receivers can’t catch them. If he does not move quickly, the linemen can’t protect him and he’ll be sacked. If he’s not sure-handed, there will be lots of fumbles. That’s why no one works harder in practice than the quarterback. The same holds true for the HVAC service technician. The success of the entire HVAC service company depends on his abilities (or lack thereof). That’s why an HVAC service technician spends years in training an apprenticeships working to gain the technical knowledge he needs to properly diagnose and repair HVAC problems.

 

4. COOL UNDER PRESSURE
There’s nothing like staring down a bunch of 300-pound defensive linemen who are just itching to throw you to the ground. That’s the kind of pressure the quarterback is under every time he steps to the line of scrimmage. Your HVAC service technician also faces a great deal of pressure with every service call. He may not be facing physical violence, but he must remain calm and professional when dealing with irate customers with no air conditioning in triple-digit summer heat, as well as those with unexpected repair bills in the thousands.

 

5. ACCURATE
A quarterback is nothing without his precision throwing arm. He’s got to be able to place the short lateral as well as the long bomb in the exact spot where the receiver expects it to be. An HVAC service technician needs those accuracy skills as well. In an HVAC system with hundreds of parts and sometimes a dozen possible causes for a symptom, he needs to pinpoint an accurate diagnosis. After all, he doesn’t get four tries to make a first down; he needs to get it right the first time.

 

6. ADAPTABLE
Different situations require the quarterback to adapt his throwing technique. To throw a screen pass, he’ll make a soft, lofted pass while backpedaling. For a fade pass, he’s got to place it in front of the receiver and with enough air under it that the receiver has a chance to get to it. The HVAC service technician also must adapt his approach to the task at hand. Diagnosing a problem with a state-of-the-art VRF system in a restaurant requires different techniques than working on a rooftop system in a warehouse.

 

7. EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION SKILLS
As the leader of his team, the quarterback needs to effectively communicate play information to his teammates. There is no room for misinterpretation. Similarly, you want to deal with an HVAC service technician with good communication skills. Can he explain problems and maintenance issues in a way that makes sense to you? Does he make the time and effort to keep you informed about appointments and work in progress? Are his proposals, reports and work orders clear and informative?

 

8. AGILE
We’ve all seen cringe-worthy performances from quarterbacks lacking sufficient agility: way too many sacks, which can even lead to injury. This one may be a surprise to you, but an HVAC service technician needs to be agile as well, especially in downtown buildings. Air conditioning equipment is often jammed up in ceilings, tiny crawl spaces or wherever it can fit so it doesn’t take up useful and expensive space. Getting into those tight spaces to work on that equipment often requires a sprightly and limber guy.

 

9. PROACTIVE
A good quarterback understands the need to proactively practice the techniques he knows will produce the results he wants, like the right way to take a snap to prevent fumbling. Your HVAC service technician must be the poster child for being proactive. His job is to proactively perform the maintenance techniques that will produce the results you want from your HVAC system: efficient and reliable heating and cooling.

 

10. COMMITTED TO SAFETY
If a quarterback is reckless about safety, he won’t last long in the NFL. Your HVAC service technician takes your safety, as well as his own, just as seriously. He knows the safety hazards and follows all recommended protocols associated with HVAC equipment, including the safe handling of refrigerants, preventing carbon monoxide leaks, and dealing with mold in air conditioners and ducts.

 

Alfred State College Becomes MCAA’s Newest Student Chapter

MCAA would like to welcome their 59th student chapter, Alfred State College.

The Alfred State College MCAA Student Chapter is sponsored by the MCA of Rochester, New York. Erin Vitale, Chair of Civil Engineering Technology at the college, serves as the chapter’s faculty advisor. She helped lead the effort to get the chapter established and create student interest.

The chapter consists of Construction Management, Mechanical Engineering majors, and HVAC Associate Degree candidates. Their HVAC program involves the students in project-based learning and participation in real-world constructions projects, including installation of water, drain, heating and air conditioning systems.

The chapter will receive their charter at MCAA 2019 in Phoenix, Arizona during the Awards of Excellence Breakfast on Wednesday, March 6, 2019.

Congratulations and welcome!

Registration for MSCA Field Supervisors Training is Now Open

The 2019 Field Supervisors Training is scheduled for May 2-3 in Milwaukee, WI. This is an intensive two-day training program designed to give your service field supervisors (and your company) an edge in today’s tough market.

Focusing on training and improving the performance of service field supervisors, this program uses proven methods that will advance skills in leadership, coaching, planning, time management, communication, and motivational techniques, all of which will give the field supervisor an edge and the confidence to deal with the workplace challenges of today. The program covers a wide range of topics relevant to the needs of field supervisors, including transition to management, mentoring, delegation, the eight core values of a successful supervisor.

This is one of the most  popular courses that MSCA offers and it fills up fast!

Women Leaders Shape the Future of Women in the Mechanical Industry

Twenty-five of MCAA/MSCA’s top women leaders and manufacturer-supplier executives met this week in Arizona to shape the future of Women in the Mechanical Industry. Excitement was evident throughout the event as the attendees shared challenges and inspiring stories of success and accomplishments in their own businesses. Through brainstorming and strategic sessions, the attendees discussed an array of programming options to help women in the industry advance their careers, network, share resources and mentor young women entering the industry. Attendees left the event with a renewed sense of community and a new network of peers. Stay tuned for additional information about WiMI events and programs for the coming year.

Report Shows MCAA Members Don’t Invest Enough in Tech Budget and Manpower

In 2018, MCAA sponsored a JBKnowledge Construction Technology Report that surveyed over 2,800 professionals in the construction industry. In the newly released MCAA-Focused Report, the responses given by MCAA members were separated and compared to those of the rest of the construction industry.

While MCAA members are getting heavily involved in VDC and mobile technology, they are behind the rest of the industry when it comes to some aspects of R&D. As the report’s primary researcher, Liz Beechinor from JBKnowledge points out, “Our research is showing that the construction industry as a whole is behind on R&D spending compared to other industries, but when we take a look at MCAA members’ responses and compare that to the construction industry, they are even further behind. Fewer MCAA contractors have dedicated R&D budget and employees dedicated to R&D.”

According to a 2017 McKinsey Report, the construction industry as a whole spends less than 1% of their revenue on R&D. Compared to the auto industry, which spends 3.5%, and the aerospace industry, which spends 4.5%, this can seem relatively underfunded.

What is even more concerning is construction companies’ lack of any R&D budget. The 2018 MCAA-Focused Construction Technology Report showed that 56.8% of those surveyed had no budget for R&D, while 63.5% of MCAA members reported that they didn’t budget for R&D.

The same could be said for having employees dedicated to R&D. In the last few years, we have seen more MCAA and MSCA contractors dedicate manpower to technology research and implementation, but on average, they are still behind the rest of the industry.

Most respondents that identified as MCAA members reported that they had one or two people dedicated to R&D, while 37% do not have employees dedicated to R&D. During a presentation on the topic at MCAA19, MCAA’s Director, Construction Technology Sean McGuire explained, “While we are seeing more members take technology seriously, smaller companies are going to always be more limited on budget and manpower that they can dedicate towards research and implementation. Larger GCs and CMs can absorb these costs a little easier simply as a function of their size.”

Being bigger does not necessarily mean better though.  As Sean notes, “While research and staff budgets can be absorbed by larger companies easier, the bigger you are, the harder implementation becomes. Small companies can adopt changes a lot faster because you can get less people pulling in the same direction faster.  Large companies have to dedicate more resources to implementation and follow up.”

This lines up with another report question that asked what the most limiting factor was for adopting new technology. Not surprisingly, lack of staff and budget received the highest response rates and were concerns for nearly half of the MCAA respondents. The report provides further insight into these questions as well as BIM productivity and estimation and mobile device and hardware use.

Need Bloodborne Pathogens Training for Your Team? Check Out this Video!

MCAA’s Bloodborne Pathogens Safety Training Video illustrates how observing basic precautions prevents the transmission of bloodborne pathogens and related diseases, such as Hepatitis B and HIV.

Your workers will learn to:

  • Identify potential high-exposure work tasks
  • Protect themselves before starting work or responding to an injury
  • Select and use appropriate personal protective equipment
  • Use appropriate procedures for clean-up
  • Properly handle contaminated equipment
  • Use proper personal hygiene practices to help prevent exposure

Download or play the video in English

Download or play the video in Spanish

There’s More…

Accompanying materials are also available to assist you in highlighting key training points, documenting worker training and confirming that workers understand the training concepts:

Highlight key training points

Download the Pocket Guide

Document worker training

Download the Documentation Sheet

Confirm that workers understand the training concepts

Download the Test

Download the Test Answer Key

Check Out this Related Resource

Download the Model Program

Want More Safety Resources?

MCAA has you covered, with a full range of resources to help you protect your workers from injury and comply with applicable safety regulations. Here’s where to find them:

On our Direct Links to MCAA & MSCA Safety Resources page, where they’re listed by category with links.

Go there now

In the Resource Center, where you can use the blue Refine Your Search bar to pinpoint exactly what you’re looking for.

Visit the Resource Center

Have questions or need personal assistance?

Contact MCAA’s Pete Chaney.

MCAA Kicked Off Targeted Programming for Women Professionals at MCAA18

Our association’s leading women kicked off our Women in the Mechanical Industry forum with a networking reception. During the event, women learned how the forum will further enrich their careers through networking, educational, mentoring and career development opportunities beyond those already offered through membership in MCAA and MSCA. Women in the Mechanical Industry also sponsored a special session on two proven career advancement strategies measured to have the strongest payoff for women professionals.

MSCA and Convoy of Hope Team Up and Do Some Good in CA

 

MSCA volunteers and the Convoy of Hope team up for the ninth year to give back in Orange County, CA, in conjunction with MSCA18. Over 50 volunteers performed a variety of projects including landscaping, painting, and construction that provided Share Our Selves, Costa Mesa with a face lift. In addition to 36 pallets of supplies were donated and unloaded. A special thank you to everyone who participated and donated to our project this year!

MCAA’s Revised Injury/Illness Recordkeeping Guide is Now Available to Members

MCAA’s recently revised injury and illness recordkeeping guide is now available to MCAA and MSCA members for free as a benefit of membership. Several recent changes to OSHA’s recordkeeping regulation prompted the revisions, which include new work-related injury illness reporting requirements, electronic submission of injury and illness records, deadlines for reporting, etc. If you have any questions about this publication or any of OSHA’s recordkeeping requirements, please contact Pete Chaney at pchaney@mcaa.org or 301-990-2214.

Arista Gives Back in a Big Way

MSCA member company Arista Air Conditioning Corp, of Long Island City, NY, partnered with Convoy of Hope to organize a charitable event to replace their annual fall company meeting. This event took place on October, where 122 participants came out and packed more that 4,200 hygiene kits that will go to communities and people in need worldwide. Volunteering a total of 244 hours of work, Arista’s employees put their skills and passion towards a great cause.

“I had been feeling that as a company we have such a strong, skilled, hard working group that it was a shame we couldn’t leverage that and give back in some meaningful way’” said President of Arista, Scott Berger.

While this was Arista’s first charitable event like this, they aren’t ready to stop just yet. Arista will be sending 12 employees on a weeklong field trip in Puerto Ricco this January to help rebuild homes that were ravaged during hurricane Maria in conjunction with Convoy of Hope.

“I think everyone at Arista felt good about the work we did and what we accomplished,” according to Scott.

MSCA and Convoy of Hope have a longstanding partnership and have worked together for the past nine years to “give back” in the community where the annual education conference is held.  This year in Huntington Beach, CA MSCA will be lending at hand at a local community health center, Share Our Selves and delivering a tractor trailer full of needed supplies to this organization. This partnership has been very rewarding and our members, including Arista, love the opportunity give back in this meaningful way.

           

UA’s 2018 International Apprenticeship Contest HVAC Winner

Every year the United Association (UA) holds an International Apprenticeship Contest, bringing together top apprentices from the US and Canada. The apprentices compete in local, state/provincial and district contests, including written and hands on projects.  The committee then selects the top individual from each trade from the District Apprentice Contest winners. The recipient of the International Apprenticeship Contest award portrays the UA’s commitment to the highest standard of performance and the desire to make a difference in the lives of the people they teach.

This year’s HVAC winner Ryan D. England, District 4, Local 137, is from Springfield, IL. Ryan is a recent graduate from the UA Apprenticeship program.

Ryan has been employed by AIRmasters, an MSCA member, for the past six years.  Robbie Mathews, Founder, Owner and Service Manager of AIRmasters is proud of Ryan’s accomplishment in winning this award but said he is not surprised. “Watching him grow and evolve both personally and professionally has been indescribable for me,” says Mathews. “I believe that almost all accomplishments and accolades in life have some sort of luck involved. But not this one!”

Mathews goes on to say, it is no secret that highly trained HVAC service technicians, especially ones that grow and adapt with the technological advances of the equipment, are becoming harder and harder to find. Employers often need to invest in additional training for service staff, which can be costly. This is not the case with Ryan. His drive for excellence and hunger for knowledge does not go unnoticed by his leader’s or industry peers. He takes a lot of pride in his work and does not rely on others to enhance both his skills and his professionalism. As Mathews said; “Finding a smart guy might come our way, but rarely one that also possesses manners, respect and humility. Ryan is truly the exception”.

Congratulations, Ryan, on a job well-done!

Benefit From What Your Peers Know

The MSCA Discussion forum is a great place to get answers and collaborate with industry peers and experts. There are over 25 topics currently being discussed on the forum; including On-boarding New Customers, Tool Tracking and Auto Renewals. Check them all out and see what kind of ideas you can share or knowledge you can gain!

Here are the easy instructions on how to use MSCA Discussion Forum:

  • Log into MSCA’s website with your username and password
  • Go to Discussion Forum tab at upper right hand corner and click
  • Scroll down and pick a topic that you want to join or start a new topic
  • Share your thoughts or ask a question and hit the submit button on lower right
  • Connect with experts and peers in interesting discussions and get feedback

Dick Starr, Former MSCA Chairman, Provides Insight on the Maintenance Requirements of High-Performance Buildings

Energy efficiency, comfort, and productivity are the top focus for most high-performance buildings, according to Dick Starr, senior account executive, Enterprise HVAC Service & Control, Twinsburg, Ohio and former chairman of the MSCA Board of Managers.

In a high-performance building, system integration is key. A balance between productivity, safety, good health, and energy efficiency is imperative. Failure to maintain one component may prevent the entire system from performing optimally.

With an emphasis on system v. equipment, these high-performance buildings differ from most other commercial buildings, where the focus tends to land more on a ‘break/fix’ mentality and focus only on basic wear and tear maintenance. With the equipment running independently of each other maintaining one part will not impact another.

Since high-performance buildings are normally ‘owner-occupied’ facilities, according to Starr, he believes that building and maintaining trust between the building owner and HVAC service provider is key to developing best practices and creating a successful strategic plan. Each building is unique and requires a different maintenance program to operate at its highest potential.

Read the full article from theNews and learn more on how to create a maintenance program that will result in higher performing systems, please click here.

Ferris Student Marjorie Banda Receives MSCA Scholarship

Marjorie Banda, a freshman in Ferris State University’s HVACR program, was the recipient of this year’s MSCA Scholarship in recognition of her scholastic achievement. In a thank you letter to MSCA Executive Director Barbara Dolim, Marjorie said, “I am truly grateful for the financial support that I have received from you as an organization. It will definitely make a big difference and leave a mark that will be with me as long as I live. I am motivated to work even harder in school and obtain my HVACR Bachelor’s Degree.”

Marjorie is involved in several student organizations, including the Greater Michigan MSCA Student Chapter, which presented the scholarship.

In the conclusion to her letter, Marjorie noted that, “Supporting females like myself in STEM programs instills confidence in women that indeed the industry does believe that women do have the potential to contribute to the industry.”

MSCA provides scholarship money annually to the MSCA Chapter of Ferris State University to be awarded to a student (or students) in the university’s HVACR program, as selected by department faculty, based on scholastic achievement and other criteria. MSCA representatives serve on the department’s advisory board and chapter members are invited to attend the annual MSCA conference where they have an opportunity to meet with MSCA members from around the country.

Introducing the Women in the Mechanical Industry Initiative Page

MCAA/MSCA’s Women in the Mechanical Industry Initiative has a new home on the MCAA website! If you’re a woman executive or employee of an MCAA/MSCA member company, this page will keep you up to date on our efforts to enable women in the mechanical industry to further enrich their careers through networking, educational, mentoring and career development opportunities beyond those already offered through membership in MCAA and MSCA.

Keep Your Service Techs Safe in the Field – This Video Can Help!

MCAA’s Mechanical Service Safety Training Video teaches your service techs how to protect themselves from the most common safety hazards in the field.

Your workers will learn:

  • How to conduct a quick walk-around vehicle inspection
  • Why it’s important to preplan their days to ensure that they have the right tools, materials and safety equipment on hand
  • How to protect themselves and others while driving
  • Why they should check in with their supervisor or someone at the office when working alone
  • How to safely set up and use ladders
  • When fall prevention/protection are needed and how to properly protect themselves
  • How to protect themselves from electrical hazards while working on equipment pushing 480 volts or less
  • What additional protection is needed when working on equipment pushing more than 480 volts

Download or play the video

There’s More…

Accompanying materials are also available to assist you in highlighting key training points, documenting worker training and confirming that workers understand the training concepts:

Highlight key training points

Download the Pocket Guide

Document worker training

Download the Documentation Sheet

Confirm that workers understand the training concepts

Download the Test

Download the Test Answer Key

Want More Safety Resources?

MCAA has you covered, with a full range of resources to help you protect your workers from injury and comply with applicable safety regulations. Here’s where to find them:

On our Direct Links to MCAA & MSCA Safety Resources page, where they’re listed by category with links.

Go there now

In the Resource Center, where you can use the blue Refine Your Search bar to pinpoint exactly what you’re looking for.

Visit the Resource Center

Have questions or need personal assistance?

Contact MCAA’s Pete Chaney.

Download Your New Membership Directory & Buyer’s Guide Today!

The full-featured digital version of our Membership Directory & Buyer’s Guide enhances the look and feel of our directory with digital-only benefits to help you:

  • Network on the go with linked email addresses.
  • Connect with the companies, products and services that interest you using linked web addresses.
  • Get where you’re going…fast…with bookmarks and a linked table of contents.
  • Find advertisers instantly with a linked advertiser index.

MCAA’s Membership Directory & Buyer’s Guide is free as a member benefit. Printed directories are in the mail and will arrive to members within the next two weeks.

Download Your Copy

Have updates? Please share! Update your profile on our website, or contact Jan Grillo for assistance.

Find the Latest from Viega, Victaulic and More in MCAA’s Virtual Trade Show

MCAA’s Virtual Trade Show connects our contractor members with the members of MCAA’s Manufacturer/Supplier Council.

Participating companies highlight and link to new products, product lines, services, solutions or web pages of particular interest. Here are just a few of the recent additions:
Viega MCAA Virtual Trade Show
Viega

Viega MegaPress XL® – Advanced Press for Larger Pipes – The only press fitting system for 2½” to 4″ dia. carbon steel pipe, makes connections, on average, in 25 seconds. Compared to welding, it saves up to 60% in installation costs and up to 90% in time.

Learn More


Victaulic Virtual Trade Show
Victaulic
QuickVic SD – It’s the most economical and efficient way to join small diameter plain end carbon steel pipe, and it’s now available from Victaulic!

Learn More

Need Something Else?

Find many more smart solutions in MCAA’s Virtual Trade Show!

Visit the Virtual Trade Show

Speaking of Smart Solutions

Visit the Smart Solutions Case Studies area of our website to learn how other mechanical contractors found their win-win with cost-saving and productivity-enhancing applications from members of MCAA’s Manufacturer/Supplier Council.

This section of our website also includes tips and ideas to help your company save money and enhance your productivity. Don’t miss it!

VISIT SMART SOLUTIONS

Need to Keep Your Workers Safe from Asbestos Hazards? This Video Can Help!

MCAA’s Asbestos Awareness for the Mechanical Trades Safety Training Video teaches your workers to protect themselves from the hazards involved in working around microscopic asbestos fibers.

Your workers will learn:

  • What asbestos is
  • Where asbestos can be found on the jobsite
  • What the health hazards of asbestos exposure are
  • How to identify potential asbestos hazards
  • How to protect themselves from asbestos hazards

Download or play the video in English

Download or play the video in Spanish

There’s More…

Accompanying materials are also available to assist you in highlighting key training points, documenting worker training and confirming that workers understand the training concepts:

Highlight key training points

Download the Pocket Guide

Document worker training

Download the Documentation Sheet

Confirm that workers understand the training concepts

Download the Test

Download the Test Answer Key

Want More Safety Resources?

MCAA has you covered, with a full range of resources to help you protect your workers from injury and comply with applicable safety regulations. Here’s where to find them:

On our Direct Links to MCAA & MSCA Safety Resources page, where they’re listed by category with links.

Go there now

In the Resource Center, where you can use the blue Refine Your Search bar to pinpoint exactly what you’re looking for.

Visit the Resource Center

Have questions or need personal assistance?

Contact MCAA’s Pete Chaney.