Hannah is the Marketing & Communications Director for BPI.
Building Performance News and Discussion
By Quinn Korzeniecki
BPI is hiring a Client Relations Representative (CRR) in Malta, NY and a Florida-based Technical Relations Representative (TRR). The TRR must reside in Florida and will serve as a technical resource for BPI staff and for BPI's client base and stakeholders outside of the organization. The CRR will serve as the point of contact via phone, email, or other methods of communication for you, our BPI stakeholders. Read more about, and apply for, both positions on our Jobs Pages.
Earn 2 BPI CEUs for contributing to the BPI homeowner blog. Email email@example.com if you are interested in writing on home performance topics for a homeowner audience. Some ideas: case studies from homes you’ve worked in, information on specific parts of the home (e.g. ventilation, heating systems, etc.), and anything else you can think of! Earn CEUs when your blog is accepted and published to the BPI Homeowner Blog.
BPI is abbreviating the name of the Residential Building Envelope – Whole House Air Leakage Control Installer (RBE-WHALCI) certification to Air Leakage Control Installer (ALC). BPI changed the certification name to improve the certification's branding and to enable homeowners to better understand what services these specialist contractors provide.
The House voted and set the 2018 U.S. DOE’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s budget at $1.12 billion, about half of its 2017 budget. The Senate would still need to approve the 2018 budget.
Women in Home Performance: Darlene Jackson is a program associate on the Residential team at the Midwest Energy Efficiency Alliance (MEEA). In this role, she provides support in the coordination and implementation of HVAC SAVE and Illinois Home Performance.
This article could apply to any person in any position, but this post will specifically focus on the technician that wants to move into management. Do all techs desire to move into a salaried position with additional responsibilities? Of course not, but some do, so what is the process?
The process is a lot simpler than you might expect. To move you up, your work ethic and your attitude need to catch the attention of the company owner and/or your manager. Did you notice “skills to do the job” were not on the list? It’s kind of like being a college graduate. That piece of paper you earned will get you through the door. However, once you are in the door, in most cases, someone within the company will teach you the specifics of the job you are filling. It’s the same for the individual in the technician role that wants to advance. You must first get in the door.
The beginning point for technicians who wish to move up within the ranks of the company is this: getting noticed. The owner and/or manager needs to notice that you are different without anyone saying anything. Let’s look at a few practical ways you can stand out:
Show Up on Time Every Day – This might sound trite but it’s not. Owners and managers notice when employees consistently show up on time day after day, week after week, and so on. Showing up a bit early each day (so you are ready to start work when the clock hits 7:30 AM) is simply icing on the cake. Look around at your fellow techs. How many of them show up on time every day? Those that do surely stand out.
Attitude – Attitude can instantly set you apart without a word having been spoken. A consistently good attitude will draw attention to an individual like bees to honey. Why? Individuals with consistently positive attitudes are rare and everyone wants a person like that on their team.
Appearance – This is important. If you are a technician, the first impression a customer has about you as an individual (which transfers to the customer’s perception of your abilities and the quality of work the company offers) is based on appearance. Is that fair? No. Is it real? Yes. Practice being a manager by dressing like one. Clean uniforms, combed hair, and no visible body art all make a good impression. Your current look may be okay if you are a tech in the field. However, we are trying to catch management’s eye, so start by being clean and neat in your general appearance. Believe me, management will notice.
Team Player – Being a team player means putting other people’s, and the company’s, interests above your own. The “all-about-me” individual will never be a team player. As a tech, help the other techs. Give them a hand when you see the need. Take care to return tools and/or unused parts to their proper shelf. That’s what being a team player is all about.
Paperwork – When you are promoted, it is highly unlikely that you will instantly do an outstanding job on paperwork. The time to “show” management you can handle that part of the job is by doing it properly in your current position. Practice makes perfect and it also forms a habit. Paperwork is not typically a tech’s forte. If you do a great job, guess what happens? Right, people notice!
Pointing Out Ways to Improve – Owners and managers want things to run as smoothly as possible. That also means they are open to new ideas. As a technician, you see how inventory is set up in the truck and probably have suggestions for improvement. You are constantly filling out forms and paperwork that could be redesigned to be more efficient. If you are assigned a specific truck, take ownership of it. Keep it washed, be sure regular maintenance is performed, and drive it as if it were your own personal vehicle. Be sure it is properly inventoried so you can be as efficient as possible on the job. If repairs are needed, be sure management is notified. Share your thoughts and ideas with your supervisor. It will make you stand out.
Taking Classes – Trust me. Any owner and/or manager worth their salt will notice when you start taking the initiative to improve your education and skill level and, therefore, add value to the company. If they see you are making the individual effort to improve your skill set, that will impress them.
In summary, if you want to move up within your company, the best way to be noticed is to become an outstanding performer within the position you currently occupy. If you take the initiative to excel in the above areas, management will take notice and you will be seriously considered when an opening needs to be filled.
About the Author
Tom Grandy is the founder of Grandy & Associates, a company focused on training contractors how to run profitable businesses.
Stump the Chump
Let's Play Stump the Chump!
While many of you sent in responses or reached out for clarification on last month’s stumper, the problem has yet to be solved!
As a reminder, Glenn Dickey, Residential Buildings Technical Director at CSRA, has lived in his house for 17 years. About 4 months ago, the paint on the ceiling along an outside wall and under an unconditioned attic started peeling. The area over this wall is poorly air sealed and insulated with R-11 fiberglass batting. It is on the north side, gable end of the house, and the peeling area runs about 2 feet long and 2 inches wide on some spots.
We asked what could be causing this problem and how Glenn could solve it. Here are some answers that Glenn proved could not be the issue:
It couldn’t be wind washing because it takes place on the gable end of the home.
The insulation is not wet and condensation is unlikely, as the issue began this Spring (2017).
It could be a joist above the peeling that is drawling heat out of the room, causing the ceiling temperature to drop below dew point and lead to condensation. However, if this were the issue, the adjacent bathroom would experience the same issue. It doesn’t.
So, we ask again, professionals in the field, what could be causing this mysterious peeling?
Send us your answer to this month's stumper! Email firstname.lastname@example.org to enter to win the contest, and be featured in the next issue of BPI's Performance Matters.
JOIN THE DISCUSSION! Each month's Stump the Chump challenge will be featured as a topic on BPI's discussion page on Home Energy Pros, the home performance industry's very own social networking site. To send your answer there, and discuss with other Stump the Chump fans, simply visit BPI's discussion page and click on the right-hand 'Sign Up' box to create a profile, then add your comment.