A Discussion with Our New MACC President, James Padavan
We are delighted to welcome James Padavan, owner of Air Design, Inc., as our new MACC president for 2021–2022. In this, our first issue of MACC News in the new year, we are excited to feature a Q&A interview with James, who was eager to share his expectations and hopes for MACC today and into the future.
MACC: Let’s begin with the impact of Covid-19 on our industry. How do you foresee the ongoing pandemic affecting our industry in 2021?
James: In my opinion, I am looking forward to a prosperous year for this industry. While Covid-19 will most likely have a strong influence in the way we do business and a definite impact on the general economy… product development, new requirements and essential services and installations will continue to support the industry. Each contractor and supplier will have to re-evaluate the methods we are accustomed to and adapt to the changes that are necessary. Long term, this will strengthen our resolve and make for an efficient way of running our businesses and provide a variety of growth opportunities.
MACC: Why is MACC of even greater importance in today’s business environment?
James: Nothing today is getting simpler; each day a new challenge arises. We continue to have more questions than answers, more problems than solutions, more conflicts to resolve. I believe that the only way to face the issues presented is by having a great resource and support system in place. MACC is the place to find the answers as well as a place to bring your knowledge to help others in the industry. If you do not invest time and effort in your own industry, in time it will weaken and not be there for future generations.
MACC: What are the key factors and value of growing our membership?
James: Now more than ever, we need to depend on each other to follow protocol, share tactics and information on best practices, learn from each other as resources and most importantly take care of our customers, either as contractors or distributors and suppliers.
By growing our membership, we become a greater base of knowledge and ideas. As always, there is strength in numbers and our industry must become stronger to work through our industry issues. Our declining pool of qualified technicians and installers has a severe impact on our industry and only by creating a strong industry can we become an attractive career choice. There are many new, young, and creative companies that would be an excellent addition for our MACC membership as well as many experienced contractors.
MACC: How can an ‘active’ and ‘involved’ membership drive success?
James: With each year, new developments are happening in our industry. We need to create teams and committees to address the challenges that we are presented with. An active membership will help to drive success, create excitement, and provide a networking of ideas to move forward.
MACC gives us the opportunity to network and meet our fellow industry members, all facing the same issues and challenges. By attending the MACC meetings, presentations, trainings, and events, online or in-person, your comfort level grows and your desire to take advantage of the wealth of information, products and relationships increases. This can only be done by becoming involved to whatever degree is comfortable for you.
As an organization, we are here to face challenges within our industry. We not only look to the support of our fellow contractors, but the involvement of our suppliers, distributors, training, and trade partners. Our industry is one of the few that overlap into plumbing, electrical, and construction along with the need to abide by certain legal parameters, labor issues and environmental challenges. We are an open door for a variety of industries to become involved with us. MACC is an organization that can be impacted by many.
MACC: How vital are training and education in today’s climate?
James: Training and education must be a constant. The world never stops, growth continues, new products are introduced regularly, and rules and regulations are being imposed through climate change, safety and labor laws. One cannot be simply be a great technician, knowing how to repair, maintain, and service equipment. We must learn how to work with customers, fellow employees and other trades which require people skills. We must have training on new technology to help us improve our skills as HVAC contractors, in the office and in field. A well-rounded employee will not only drive individual success, but the organization’s success that employs them.
We will lean on our distributors for the proper training and our trade partners for people skills but also work on developing our own training programs. Our members will be able to use MACC as a source of valuable information: a place where you can be sure the educational programs, certifications and training are what is needed, are accurate and are able to be obtained at a discounted cost.
Recalling the Past and Looking Ahead
“In my youth, I recall the many years I focused solely on my own company’s success,” reports James. “I will admit to thinking of only that success and my personal success. That is, until I was invited to participate in MACC (ACCA of Greater New York, at that time). I felt I was running day to day with blinders on. After being involved at a minor level, I began to notice that other MACC members—many of them successful contractors—took the time to advise me or fellow members, volunteered on committees to help, became involved in developing plans and strategies for the industry as a whole, and were not out just for themselves. I became inspired to voice my opinion, participate in programs, take advantage of education and training for myself as well as my staff. I began to realize that I had been looking down at my feet instead of the road before me. As the years progressed, my involvement grew and so did my level of satisfaction, camaraderie, and sense of belonging. As the new President, I am most happy to give my time and efforts to our industry and I look forward to hopefully making a significant impact on the future of MACC.”
All of us at MACC join together in wishing James a successful and fulfilling term as our MACC president!