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Membership. Public Awareness. Workforce development. PHCC President Patrick Wallner highlighted these key objectives in the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors (PHCC-National) Association’s five-year strategic plan. With that in mind, when hundreds of contractors flock to Milwaukee for the annual PHCC CONNECT Conference, Wallner chose another three-word theme to unite those focuses: ‘Collaborating for Success.’
Collaboration at PHCC CONNECT will take place from Oct. 3-6.
Collaborating for Success isn’t something that has just come to Wallner’s mind, though. He has been using that terminology since before he took on the role of president.
“I selected the theme, ‘Collaborate for Success’ for my term as president of PHCC-National Association, to emphasize how important it is for all of the PHCC family to work together, with industry representatives, and our state and local chapter executives, to advance the industry,” Wallner says. “By collaborating, we can achieve so much that will make our association, industry, businesses and chapters more successful.”
Forty-five percent of PHCC members are both plumbing and HVAC contractors, making collaboration throughout the industry more and more important each year. Wallner found out first-hand how combining the HVAC and plumbing world into a business could help in the long run; his involvement with PHCC more than 20 years ago inspired him to add HVAC to his business’ contractors’ licenses. This could be something that becomes more common with this year’s theme.
When it comes to collaborating the three objectives toward PHCC’s strategic plan, CONNECT will have plenty of opportunities.
For instance, the session “Workforce Development” will emphasize how companies can recruit some of the top talent in the industry. The session takes place on the final morning of the conference and will serve as a platform for attendees to share proven ideas and solutions that have worked for their companies.
Another popular event back this year, the QSC Power Sessions, will bring together the dynamics of workforce development. With the help of business coaches, these sessions will include roundtable events, profit calculations and examples of tactics that can be used in the workplace to help keep employees motivated.
Though many sessions are steered toward collaborating on workforce dynamics and membership, public awareness will also receive a spotlight during this four-day event.
Chris Baldwin, president of Kohler Co. will talk about the current state of the industry. Baldwin will also bring members of the industry together on Wednesday, Oct. 4 for a tour of the Kohler facilities. During that tour, members can learn the history behind one of the nation’s largest plumbing manufacturers and tour Kohler’s pottery, brass and foundry.
On Thursday, White Hat Hackers — Dr. Charlie Miller and Chris Valasek — address members together to talk about the Internet of Things, as well as keeping businesses secure from getting hacked; these speakers will be sponsored by Viega.
“With a comprehensive line-up of educational sessions, networking events and the Product and Technology Showcase, there will be plenty of opportunities to expand knowledge, expertise and contacts,” Wallner says.
Milwaukee will be the headquarters for industry leaders during this year’s event, and it seems to be the perfect hub for industry members to collaborate.
“Milwaukee is an ideal venue for the event. Not only is it a beautiful and friendly city with plenty to do and see, but its central location is easy to get to from just about anywhere in the U.S. and Canada,” Wallner says. “In addition, PHCC of Wisconsin has been extremely helpful promoting the event in their state and adjoining areas. This is a true example of Collaborating for Success.”
Plumbing and HVAC, as well as the three key strategic focuses to PHCC’s five-year plan, aren’t the only modes of collaboration that can help companies toward future growth. PHCC CONNECT will conjoin different elements of the industry — technology and people; creativity and strategy; hard work and intelligence; innovation and tradition — throughout each day’s sessions. Below are some of the specific sessions to look for:
Technology and people
Digital Workflow and Collaboration: The Residential Technology Trends You Need to Know
Wednesday, Oct. 4, 2:45 p.m. - 3:45 p.m.
Dave Pedigo, CEDIA
Differentiate your company from your competitors! With consumer expectations increasing, keeping up with technology trends is imperative. The correct approach can increase profits, save production time, and result in satisfied clients, referrals and trend-setting impressions. Learn how, as we follow the rapid implementation of new technologies and explore their impact on current and future business models.
Prepare for a Sales Surge in Heat Pump Water Heaters
Thursday, Oct. 5, 2:15 p.m. –
Arthur Smith, Kevin Binkley and Brandon Stepanek, A. O. Smith
Homeowners wouldn’t cut their grass with a pair of scissors, yet many are willing to heat their water in a way that’s just as inefficient. Recent research, though, indicates that homeowners and contractors nationwide are showing renewed interest in hybrid electric heat pump water heaters, which use just 30 percent of the energy of standard electric water heaters. In this session, we’ll educate you so that you can properly educate your customers, including how to ask your local utility about incentive programs for heat pump water heaters. The homeowner savings — and contractor margins — are too big to ignore!
Deal-Maker: Estimating from the BIM Model
Thursday, Oct. 5, 4:15 p.m. –
Bret Jenkins, Quote Software Inc.
Accurate counts can be the difference between winning and losing work. It won’t be much longer before your firm will be asked to bid only if it can demonstrate the ability to effectively work inside a BIM-driven project. Gain the practices, methodologies and technologies that your company must integrate into your standard business and shop operations to be BIM capable.
Creativity and strategy
Profit First - How to Make Any Business Highly Profitable
Tuesday, Oct. 3, 5:30 p.m. –
The profit formula is simple: Sales – Expense = Profit. The only problem is, it’s a lie. In this powerful session, Michael Michalowicz will show you why the formula entrepreneurs use to calculate profit actually inhibits it. He will then share a new approach to profit — taking it first — that instantly changes everything. With this simple yet profound change, any business will become instantly and permanently profitable.
Web Marketing 2017: Simple Keys to Unlocking Maximum Profitability
Thursday, Oct. 5, 3:15 p.m. –
Alain Parcan, Market Hardware
Whether people learn about your business from a friend or find you online, chances are they’re going to take a look at your website before calling you. Make sure it has the five features that Google — and potential customers — are looking for! (Hint: Reviews might be the most important factor in 2017.) We’re providing tips, secrets, answers and more during this coaching session designed to help you understand everything from basic website fundamentals to newer, more evolved tactics. And, if reviews are as important to you as they are to most PHCC contractors, be sure to join us to learn a simple yet effective review management strategy!
Growing Your Business with
Thursday, Oct. 5, 4:15 p.m. –
Ian Greene, FloLogic Inc.
Plumbing leak mitigation systems with automatic water shutoff present a lucrative business opportunity — both in the sales and installation of the devices and in the increased repair calls that result when leaks are detected in real time. While the Internet of Things is making more leak detection devices available to consumers, not all provide adequate protection. Learn how to effectively sell superior leak detection technologies and boost your value as an installing contractor.
Hardwork and intelligence
The Flint, Michigan Water Crisis: What went wrong, and can it happen again?
Wednesday, Oct. 4, 9:30 a.m. - 10:45 a.m.
Sean Cleary, IAPMO
What went wrong in Flint, Michigan? Join us as we examine the timeline and uncover the actions — or inactions — of local, state and federal officials. Was this an isolated incident, or simply a focal point of what is now a widespread problem with water quality and a deteriorating public infrastructure? Let’s look at how we can prevent these issues from happening in the future
Why All the Fuss About Hydraulic Separators?
Wednesday, Oct. 4, 11 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
“Hot Rod” Rohr, Caleffi
With performance and warranties tied directly to the installation and care of hydronic components, it’s crucial you learn the importance of proper components and installation. This can’t-miss session will cover all the “how’s and why’s” of hydronic air, dirt and hydraulic separation.
Collections Start at SALE!
Wednesday, Oct. 4, 1:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
David Turiciano, Turiciano
In this fast-paced, interactive session, construction attorney David Turiciano will give away the secret to making sure you get paid when you sell the job! This is not your usual dry legal session; David is known for being humorous and practical. It’s about what really happens — or needs to happen — in your business plan, in your contract negotiations, in your meetings with your attorney, and in the courtroom to make sure you are getting paid for the work you do.
Innovation and tradition
Changing the Conversation
Thursday, Oct. 5, 2:15 p.m. – 3 p.m.
Jeff Bledsoe, Daikin North America, LLC
Do you have concerns about how to get involved and take advantage of the new HVAC inverter trend that is drastically growing market share in the United States? Think the price is too high? It’s too complicated? Come learn how to change the conversations you’re having with your customers and how to properly position this equipment and your company so that you can take advantage of this trend and grow your business.
The Digital Contractor: Disruption, Acceleration, and the Future of Productivity & Profit (Part 1)
Friday, Oct. 6, 2 p.m. – 3:15 p.m.
Kirk Alter, Fast Management Inc. and Purdue University
Change in construction has come … and it’s coming so fast and at such a scale that many contractors are unable to react in time. This session isn’t just about technology; it’s about the current state of the industry; where disruption is occurring and who is leading it; how acceleration is affecting all businesses (including your customers’); and how you can create strategies and tactics to increase your productivity and profitability.
Grow Your Business: Engage with the 160 million GenX’ers and Millennials
Friday, Oct. 6, 3:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m.
Bob Barnes, FreshLime
Almost 70 percent of adults are either Gen Xers or millennials. That’s 160 million people! What can you do to reach them? Come hear from representatives from both demographic groups on how to effectively attract, service and retain them as customers through email, text and social media. Like it or not, we live in a world where most adults have never heard of a Rolodex or used a phone book … and where people talk more with their thumbs than their mouths. Have no fear, this session will help you reach them!
Learn more about the conference, the sessions and collaborations throughout the industry by visiting PHCC’s website at PHCC.com.
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