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No Pain! No Change! PDF Print Email
Wednesday, February 15, 2017 09:49 AM

No Pain! No Change!

President's Message in the January/February Cooling Journal 

I have learned that the pain I experience because of change is mostly caused by my resistance to that change.  Change is inevitable.  Nothing ever stays the same.  Things are either moving forwards or backwards.  Some things we can change.  Some things we can’t change.  We just need to be smart enough to know the difference. The heat transfer industry is not immune to change for sure.

In the early 1900’s many blacksmiths adapted to a changing marketplace and customer base when horse and buggy’s began to be replaced by automobiles. William Rex, a blacksmith by trade, founded Rex Radiator in 1909.  Rex Radiator has survived four generations because they have consistently responded to a changing marketplace and customer base while not forgetting what got them there.  They still offer complete welding and repair services on an incredibly wide variety of parts as blacksmith shops did at the turn of the century.

Examples of changes that affected my business since 1994 that I could do nothing about were seeing more aluminum products, the sharp rise in copper prices in 2005, high health insurance costs, Hurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005, Gustave and Ike in 2008, Offshore Horizon Oil Spill in 2010, and the recent low oil prices.

I had to change things to offset the things I could not change. I had to change from having only a MIG welding machine by adding a TIG welding machine. I had to keep a close eye on rapidly escalating commodity prices and change pricing as needed.  I had to shop around for better insurance rates and change agents when needed.  I had to change from expecting employees to work safely and had to start training them to work safely so we could qualify for better insurance rates.  I had to change our customer base and capitalize on all the repair work needed in the Gulf of Mexico while many oil platforms were shut-in after the hurricanes.  I had to change how I monitored spending and expenses during the drilling moratorium after the oil spill.  My most recent change was to sharply cut all unnecessary spending and find other sources of income to compensate for the low oil prices of today.

Living by the old sayings “you need to make hay while the sun is shining” and “save your money for a rainy day” are saving me today.

Another saying from my southern heritage that I heard over and over from my dad while growing up was “Don’t worry about the mule going blind, just load the wagon.”  He was trying to teach me not to worry about things that might never occur.  Get the job or task in front of you done, live right, work hard, and treat people as you would want to be treated. This creates an environment in which I can accept change as it comes because I know if the time comes I can adjust to meet the changes.

While on my flight back from Las Vegas I was looking ahead to my role as NARSA president.  I reflected on how lucky I am to work with a board of directors who has created a great working environment of trust, service, accountability, and friendship. This is a Board that has a good mix of experience and youth. This is a Board that is well-prepared to accept the challenges of change.

Change did come to NARSA.  Before Christmas, I received phone calls from not one, but from three fellow members of the Board.  They are selling their businesses to LKQ. Two of our members, Chairman Mark Taylor, and Director Bobby Duran, are going to stay with the new owner. The third board member, Treasurer Angelo Miozza, is going to retire.

I called a meeting of the Board. After a very good and positive discussion, we all agreed that it was in the best interest of NARSA to keep as many of these good leaders as we could.

Angelo, Mark and Bobby have been very active. They have supported many of our programs and all played key roles in setting the future direction of our organization strategic plan. When directors are elected, the person is elected not the company. The NARSA Board has always been diligent in providing a neutral forum in which individuals could work together for the betterment of all. Bobby, Mark and Angelo have always acted in the best interests of our organization. They leave their company hats at the door as do all of the other directors.

The NARSA Board is about service and responsibility to making member businesses better.  That is what we do. Try as we may, we could not convince all three to stay. Angelo has announced his retirement from the industry and the Board at the end of March.  We could never repay him for his more than 15 years of devoted service as a Board member and treasurer.  We will miss him dearly.  Mark and Bobby will stay on until at least the end of their first term year in October 2017.  Roland Ewert of TSM will move from the Secretary position to Treasurer.  Kyle Rickermann will become Secretary.

I think the Association is fortunate to have an environment that accepts change and people we can trust and rely on to continue to do the right thing. Change is inevitable. We all experience change.  Look at change as a new challenge to tackle rather than a damper in our industry and in the work place. Changing for the better! P.S. I did not sell my business.

 

David Bienvenu

NARSA President 2016-2018

Comments? Email me at dbienvenu@narsa.org

 
Thermal Solutions Manufacturing Announces the Opening of its Pembroke Park , FL Location PDF Print Email
Wednesday, February 08, 2017 03:00 PM

Thermal Solutions Manufacturing Announces the Opening of its Pembroke Park, FL Location 

Nashville TN --- Thermal Solutions Manufacturing announces the opening of its newest branch location in Pembroke Park, FL (Fort Lauderdale/Miami areas). This new location will open for pickup and delivery service February 13, 2017, and complements our existing Orlando distribution operation.

Roland Ewert, Vice President of Sales and Marketing, is once again excited to announce the expansion of Thermal Solution’s distribution footprint into the south Florida market. This area previously serviced next day from our Orlando, FL branch, will now receive “same day” delivery and one-hour pickup service in the greater Fort Lauderdale and Miami markets. This location will benefit from a “market specific” inventory plan and frequent replenishment of stock from TSM’s Dallas, TX distribution center.

This plan includes replacement Cores, Heavy-Duty Truck Tough* complete Truck Radiators (all constructions), Charge Air Coolers, Truck Condensers, as well as Automotive and Light Truck Radiators and Heater Cores.

Wherever You Go, We’ve Got You Covered!

 

 
NARSA – The International Heat Transfer YouTube Channel PDF Print Email
Monday, February 06, 2017 02:49 PM

NARSA – The International Heat Transfer YouTube Channel 

Missed the Sharp Skills Competition or would like to know more about the Heavy Duty Heating and Cooling Conference? Check out NARSA – The International Heat Transfer Association on YouTube.

In May 2005, YouTube was launched, allowing people to discover, watch and share originally-created videos.  Owned by Google, YouTube provides a forum for people to connect, inform, and inspire others across the globe through videos.

Today, YouTube reaches more 18 to 50 year olds in the U.S. than any other TV network, broadcast or cable company. These users are drawn to YouTube for a different viewing experience. The content they view on YouTube can not only be watched, but also shared through e-mail, social media and text messaging.

Now, you can find NARSA – The International Heat Transfer Association on YouTube. YouTube gives NARSA another tool to share its mission:  to create access to opportunities for its members through vision, knowledge, and innovation.

The NARSA YouTube Channel (NARSA – The International Heat Transfer Association) is devoted to sharing and producing video driven content about the heat transfer industry to members and prospective members including global members. YouTube is localized in 88 countries and can be accessed in 76 different languages, which covers 95 percent of the world’s internet population.

How can you access the NARSA YouTube channel? You can visit www.narsa.org and find the link to the channel under the “Quick Links” or you can visit www.youtube.com and search NARSA – The International Heat Transfer Association. Or click here

On the channel, you will find NARSA’s new videos:  NARSA Sharp Skills Competition 2016 and NARSA HD Heating & Cooling Conference.  From here you can share these videos across your social media platforms, emails and even embed them into your own website. 

NARSA members are also encouraged to use the NARSA YouTube channel to promote their business or provide educational videos.  Does your company have a video they would like to share on the NARSA YouTube Channel?  Email Liz at liz@narsa.org for more information. 

 
2016: A Year in Review PDF Print Email
Friday, January 06, 2017 02:33 PM

2016: A Year in Review

Welcome to the year 2017! Before we speed through another 12 months, let’s pump the brakes and take a look back on 2016. What impacted businesses this year in the world of the “Silent Giant” also known as the Auto Aftermarket?

YANG (Young Auto Care Network Group of the Automotive Care Association) ended last year with “2016: A Year in Review”. This webinar provided a summary of how far the automotive aftermarket has come and all that has taken place in the past 12 months. While some of the information may not pertain to you or your business, it is still important to see what our industry has done and what is expected to trend in the upcoming year. NARSA staffer, Liz Juchno is a member of YANG.

You can find this webinar here, but we understand your time is valuable and so we provided a short summary below with a NARSA twist on it.

Convergence

The one word that best sums up the year of 2016 in the auto care industry is convergence which means to meet or to merge. Why is this word the word of the year? This year the automotive aftermarket industry came together to meet at AAPEX making this the 31st largest trade show in the U.S.

Also converging at this show, is the merger of the tech and auto industries. In the heat exchange business, we’ve seen the merging and meeting of technologies a little differently than what was discussed in the webinar. Sure cars are now being equipped with computers to manage cabin comfort and to control powertrain heat, but in the heat exchange world we are also using computers to help run the daily operations of business. Business owners now spend less time promoting and finding products as well as staying in the “know” on the latest developments in our industry with the help of technology. 

Let not forget to mention the merging or meeting of generations. Keep it all in the family as some may say and our industry has seen this trend of parents and children and even grandchildren working side by side. We now need each generation more then ever to bring forth the knowledge of the wise and innovation of the new.

“It’s cheaper to keep her.” – Johnnie Taylor

Which brings us to the second topic, the evolving business of the independent repair facilities. This year some shops have reported a great year and others a “soft” year in the repair business. The shops that reported a “soft” year are resilient though because the wise know it can only go up from here. And this is stated to be true.

70% of cars on the road are over six years old and Forbes is reporting that motorist are holding onto their vehicles longer then ever. Even if consumers are buying new, the auto financing is now extended to as long as eight years making this trend of keeping the old not going anywhere.

Mentor a Millennial

One of the top concerns of an independent repair facility goes for anyone in the business and that is finding great employees. Every business struggles with finding loyal, great employees and the solution is as simple as to mentor… mostly a millennial.

Millennials have a bad rep in the working world, but that doesn’t mean this pertains to all young adults born between 1982 to 2000. We (Liz: yes, I am a millennial) are now the focus in the working world. We grew up with the advances of technology and our work-life balance are vastly different from other generations. With the ease of technology being incorporated in every aspect of life; millenials often don’t leave the social aspects of their life to their “free” time out of work or visa versa. 

Millenials favor familial over corporate values because the way they value the work-life balance. Which is why millenials love to be mentored and to feel that family value. This also will help create trust between you and your millennial employee with the outcome of hopefully becoming a loyal, great employee.

Where do you find millenials to mentor? Tech schools are a great opportunity to find your next employees and get involved with your community. If that doesn’t work for you then head to the internet. 55% of shops have Facebook pages now and is a great way to communicate with the young adults in your area looking for employment.

What’s next in 2017?

We can’t predict the future, but we can give you a heads up on what to look out for. With new administration stepping in this year, we may what to keep these topics below on close radar: 

  • NAFTA, International Trade and the Trans Pacific Partnership
  • U.S. Manufacturing Jobs
  • Environmental Issues (Copper, MPG/CAFÉ fuel economy standards)
  • Infrastructure Spending
  • Tax Regulations 
 
Santo Domingo Travel Guide PDF Print Email
Tuesday, January 03, 2017 02:07 PM

Santo Domingo Travel Guide

Picture:  Embassy Suites by Hilton Santo Domingo

Santo Domingo, the Caribbean’s first city and the capital of the Dominican Republic. The city is a mix of old world charm and modern Latin flair. Its medieval palaces and fortresses mix with modern day business district and glitzy upscale shopping malls, making this city both an exotic tourist destination and an important business and finance center.

Top Attractions

The Colonial Zone •  UNESCO World Heritage Site

Distance from Embassy Suites by Hilton Santo Domingo:  3.8 MI

Founded in 1498 by Bartholomew Columbus (younger brother of Christopher Columbus), the Santo Domino Colonial Zone is the oldest European settlement in the New World.

“The Colonial Zone is a wonderland of historic Spanish Colonial buildings and monuments. Yet, the area is so much more than a mere open-air museum. It is a bustling district filled with shops, restaurants, cafes and night clubs. The vibrant street life, incredible live music performances and beautiful parks and squares make the Colonial Zone a prime tourist destination.” – santodomingotourism.com

The Colonial Zone has something for everyone all in easy walking distance. Looking for more information? Visit santodomingotourism.com or find tips from other visitors at tripadvisor.com.

 

Alcázar de Colón • The Former Residence of Christopher Columbus’ Son 

Picture from Santo Domingo Tourism 

Distance from Embassy Suites by Hilton Santo Domingo:  3.8 MI

Address: Plaza de Espana (Off Calle Emiliano Tejera at foot of Calle Las Damas), Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Hours: Tuesday to Sunday 9am – 5pm

The Alcázar de Colón is one of the most popular tourist attractions in Santo Domingo. Built by Christopher Columbus’ son, Diego Columbus, between 1510 and 1514, this restored building was one of the first structures built in the oldest remaining European city in the Americas.

The beautifully restored building is an exceptional example of Spanish Colonial architecture. Now a museum, it displays a fascinating collection of European Late Medieval and Renaissance Art. Highlights include polychrome wood sculptures and tapestries. Although many of the furniture items are reproductions, they give visitors an idea of what life was like in Colonial Santo Domingo.

 

Catedral Primada de America • “First Cathedral in America”

 Picture from Santo Domingo Tourism 

Distance from Embassy Suites by Hilton Santo Domingo:  3.8 MI

Address: Calle Arzobispo Merino (on the south side of Columbus Sq.), Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Hours: 9am – 4pm daily

This impressive cathedral, one of the earliest built in the Americas, is known for its dramatic architecture. Construction began in 1514 and was completed in 1540. The interior of the cathedral features two side aisles, ribbed vaults and 12 side chapels. Artwork includes altarpieces, paintings and sculpture.

 

Los Tres Ojos National Park • The Three Eyes National Park

Picture from TripAdvisor

Distance from Embassy Suites by Hilton Santo Domingo:  6.8 MI

Address: Av. Las Americas, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Hours: 9am – 5pm 

Travel twenty minutes by car from the Embassy Suites Hilton Santo Domingo to find Los Tres Ojos National Park. Escape to the tranquil sanctuary of Los Tres Ojos Park (the Park of the Three Eyes), which features a set of three limestone caves, clear springs and numerous stalagmites and stalactites. 

If you are planning on visiting Los Tres Ojos, wear your walking shoes and bring your cameras! Looking for more advice? Check out what others had to say on TripAdvisor.

  

Information from: TripAdvisor, Santo Domingo Tourism, Embassy Suites by Hilton Santo Domingo 

 
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