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In 2019, PHCPPros launched the “Millennials On The Move” honorary listing in Plumbing Engineer, PHC News and The Wholesaler magazines. The listing was created to shed light on what is now the largest generation in the workforce, while also launching bigger conversations on topics such as industry recruiting, talent retention, leadership development and more. This year, we're expanding that conversation outside of the annual print listing with our monthly “Millennials On The Move” newsletter.
In our October spotlight, we introduce you to Michael Dungan, sales representative for Sales Engineers Inc.!
PHCPPros: How did you get into the PHCP industry?
Dungan: My journey into the PHCP industry began in 2014 with a trip to the AHR conference in New York City. While attending this trip, I networked with industry professionals and learned about the industry. I found everyone was relatable and passionate about his or her career. I spent the following summer working as an intern at Sales Engineers Inc., a manufacturers representative agency, based out of Minneapolis. After earning my bachelor’s degree at the University of Saint Thomas, I began working full time at Sales Engineers. While getting my feet wet with my career, I enjoyed the atmosphere that surrounded me. I knew I had a lot to learn, but I also knew I had the passion and ability to contribute to the industry. Four years have passed, and I have developed invaluable relationships and industry insight.
PHCPPros: How would you describe your current professional role?
Dungan: I am a manufacturers' sales representative that partners with manufacturers and the distribution channel. I work alongside local and domestic distribution partners to grow sales for our manufacturers and distributors across our six-state territory. I also spend time training and educating our future installers at the local technical colleges.
PHCPPros: What have been some of your career highlights so far?
Dungan: This is a hard question to answer because it’s hard to narrow down my highlights. My highlights have been working with several manufacturers on new products, building and preserving our brand with Gastite, Nortek, Friedrich, and Purolator. I also enjoy consulting with distributors, manufactures and trade show representatives on ways to recruit millennials and Gen Z into the workplace.
PHCPPros: Are you affiliated with groups and organizations in the PHCP industry?
Dungan: Yes, I am affiliated with Heating, Air-conditioning and Refrigeration Distributors International (HARDI), AHR, The Heat Show, and the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors—National Association (PHCC). I am also in my final year of earning my designation of CPMR.
PHCPPros: Do you have any mentors in the PHCP industry or otherwise?
Dungan: Mike Dungan, Todd Montgomery, and Greg Miller are my mentors in the PHCP industry. They have taught me how to work as an effective manufacturers' sales representative. I have learned how to provide value to our manufactures and distributors through them. They have also taught me the value in “building our brand” as a manufacturers' sales representative.
Craig Barry of Gastite has provided great opportunities with his product line. He understands the value of listening to the customer’s input and understands the strength of his company’s brand.
Chuck Palm and Brian Kelly of Friedrich have transformed the Friedrich brand. They respect the input and value of their manufacturers' sales representatives and their team is always considering how the industry will change in the future. They allow us to run our territory how we see fit, and we have brought their value to the marketplace.
Darren Leonard, Philip Windom, Keith Clark and James McIntyre of Nortek are also mentors. Everyone in the Nortek family has treated our agency as an extension of their sales team. They are willing to listen, and they have me working closely with the marketing and sales team on new products we are going to launch. I spend a lot of time speaking with James, Darren, and Keith about our exciting opportunities, and how we can disrupt the marketplace.
PHCPPros: Do you consider yourself a mentor?
Dungan: I consider myself a mentor when it comes to hiring new and young talent. As I stated before, I have worked with distributors, manufacturers, and trade shows to attract more young talent. This is a topic I am very passionate about, and it is a crisis the industry is facing. Millennials and Gen Z get a “bad rap” in the media and from a lot of companies. If you can find the right people, and you present them with opportunities, you can attract great talent. I am always willing to work with any organization to attract young talent because I can relate to the people they are trying to hire.
PHCPPros: What does it mean for you to be featured as a PHCP Millennial On The Move?
Dungan: It is an honor to be featured as a PHCP Millennial On The Move! Articles like this will attract younger talent to our industry. Millennials are looking for opportunities and an industry that allows them to stand out.