Successful managers and business owners of today have one thing in common. They are leveraging the power of building an atmosphere of open and honest communications between management and employees to help improve the workplace experience and decrease attrition.
For HVAC companies, this means getting open and honest feedback from their field tech teams. Their work directly impacts customer satisfaction, so your HVAC technicians need to take pride in working for your company.
We’ve solicited advice from Cold Factor, an Angie’s List Super Service award winner based in Lewisville, Tex., for tips to get honest and constructive employee feedback from HVAC technicians. These courses of action have assisted company managers in quickly zeroing in on pain points and smoothing out rough areas to improve the employee experience.
Your business can get on the fast track to becoming one of the highest-quality HVAC contractors in your area by utilizing these effective employee feedback and engagement tools.
1. Opening Communication Channels & Rewarding Honesty
You can get the ball rolling by taking a genuine interest in all the challenges your HVAC service technicians face every day. Begin the process by having your upper management staff ask the field tech teams simple questions and listen without judgment. From there, you’ll need to handle negative employee feedback with grace and ask for details without going on the defense. Meanwhile, you’ll have the opportunity to share your own challenges, be humble, and show that you are human.
The employee feedback and engagement process doesn’t have to be stressful. Cold Factor suggested creating fun internal events, such as leadership lunches and employee council meetings, encouraging open communication. Additionally, managers can schedule daily or weekly meetings where HVAC service technicians can directly voice their opinions and ideas. Make them feel heard by actually engaging and asking for examples, details, and insights.
Rewarding honesty doesn’t have to be a big affair. A simple, heartfelt thank you can give your HVAC technicians a significant uplift and make them more open to giving and receiving future feedback.
2. Live a Day in the Life of an HVAC Technician
Stepping into the field is the best way to familiarize yourself with a field tech team’s daily trials, tribulations, and achievements. This practice is best done once you have already established trust and put your team at ease. Just spending an hour with an HVAC service technician or a field team once a week can teach you a lot and open opportunities for candid conversations.
Cold Factor claims that living a day in the life of an HVAC technician provides invaluable experience for upper management. Doing so can improve your ability to hire your next HVAC service technician and help you decide what to include in your next HVAC training program.
3. Anonymous Surveys
Anonymity is one of the best ways to receive honest employee feedback. It is a safe space for your HVAC technicians to provide compliments and criticisms that they may not be comfortable sharing in person.
Cold Factor’s leaders say they haven’t always liked the responses they’ve received. However, honest employee feedback has allowed them to create a better experience for the entire team.
4. Acknowledge & Take Action
Always make sure to acknowledge any employee feedback, even if it feels irrelevant or petty at the moment. Additionally, you should explain to your HVAC technicians how you intend to take action to help improve any problems that have arisen. Of course, a third-party intermediary can also do this, but it is always better to have direct communication channels to make sure nothing gets filtered out.
The experts at Cold Factor said their HVAC technicians have felt empowered and motivated after seeing their feedback create positive change. Likewise, they’ve found that managers who can listen to problems impartially and offer real solutions are best positioned to drive growth and satisfaction.
Business Growth Stems From Happy HVAC Technicians
The leaders at Cold Factor said that field tech teams are the face of an HVAC company. After all, the majority of your clients only meet face-to-face with HVAC service technicians.
So, taking the time and effort to provide your HVAC technicians with a positive environment can do wonders for your business. The one-line takeaway is to create safe spaces, listen without judgment, acknowledge shortcomings, and take affirmative action.
Cory Huffman is the owner of Cold Factor LLC, Lewisville, Tex.