Commercial Contracting


Commercial Contracting

Commercial contractors have unique challenges, which are often technical and technology-related as well as business-related. The IE3 Show will focus on topics developed by and for commercial contractors. There won’t be any “mixed messages” at these programs, just strategies, tips, and resources for commercial contractors who want to improve their operations and grow their bottom line.

Commercial Program Highlights

Commercial contractors face their own unique challenges throughout the course of their work day. So, the Commercial Learning Labs have been created with the help of the members of ACCA's Commercial Contracting Committee to meet the needs of working commercial contractors. Topics that will be covered include:

  • Mastering the one-page proposal
  • Attracting & keeping millennials workers
  • Getting your piece of government contracts.
  • Protecting your customers from cyber security breaches
  • Expressing the value of energy services to customers.

Lessons Learned from HVAC Court Cases

Design, construction, and servicing of commercial HVAC systems can be complex and require careful attention from design to construction to start-up and operation of a building. It can be a great value-added and profitable service when done correctly, but unfortunately, some mistakes or misunderstandings have happened and building owners and tenants have filed lawsuits and included contractors because they have insurance or deep pockets. During this learning lab, Larry Spielvogel, PE an independent consulting engineer will review several legal cases that commercial contractors have been party to and point out the lessons that you can learn from each, so that this type of work can be done without controversy and be a profit center for your business -- not a profit killer.

Cracking The Estimating Code

Ever spend countless hours and soul searching putting together a proposal estimate only to lose out to another Contractor. How about winning the job and finding out that you left thousands of dollars on the table because your bid was considerably lower than your competitors. What did they know that you did not? During this learning lab, Phil London of Thermal Concepts will help clear up some of the mysteries behind estimating. It's not intended to be an accounting exercise, but it will be a review what goes into the costs we have to account for: break even costs; burdened costs; overhead; and of course what is our desired profit margin, These are the cornerstones of accurate estimating. Join me as we crack the code to more profitable estimating.

Watch this quick video intro to Phil's session.

Retro Commissions - $$$ A Growth Opportunity

Commissioning, re-commissioning, and retro-commissioning have become more and more common in the commercial marketplace; and each can add value to any business. During this lunch and learn session, a panel discussion will focus on commercial retro-commissioning (retro-Cx): types of commercial buildings that lend themselves for profitable retro-Cx; specific opportunities to look for when existing buildings are being evaluated; special skill sets, or partnership roles, needed to engage in retro-Cx; how industry players can best work together to bring value to the building owner; and approaches that contractors can suggest to building owners/operators to help pay for the needed building/equipment upgrades and improvements. This will be an open discussion, so grab your lunch and be ready to jump into the conversation. Panelist include: Jim Huber, Complete Commissioning, Inc.; Priscilla Koeckeritz, EnergyPrint; and Brad Bolino, John J. Kirlin LLC (ret).

Why Bonding Matters, Surety Bonding 1.0

This session will discuss the basics of surety bonding, why bonds exist, who bonds protect and how bonding can strengthen a business. The speaker will also discuss what happens when things become challenging and how sureties manage claim handling. The session will be informative and fun and participants will leaving with a better understanding of the surety underwriting and claim processes.

Not All Strategy is Good Strategy: Fatal Flaws to Avoid

Is your company hungry for backlog? There is fierce competition for the scant projects on the bidding market. In modifying your strategy or direction, it is crucial that contractor honestly evaluate climate, customers, competitors, and company while redefining your strategic foundation. During this session you will learn how to differentiate yourself from the competition, determine which market segments are good bets to take off, and how to analyze hoe your clients' buying behaviors have changed.

The Journey to Developing Innovation Into Your Business

Despite what you may think, most innovations are a group effort, not just one genius coming up with great ideas. And the certainly don't just happen overnight. During this learning lab, Joe Nichter of Comfort Systems USA Southwest is going to help you break the mold for your company, so that you can become true innovators! He will share the journey it takes, along with how to take the blinders off so that you can see the ideas that are coming not only from your internal customers (your team), but your external customers, and how to collaborate to develop innovations that will take your company to the next level.

Top Business and Sales Strategies for the Next Decade

As a business owners, you can't just think about now, you have to always be looking towards the future. This can be a real struggle, because the marketplace is always evolving. During this session Barry Burnett of BDR Is going to help you tackle those obstacles by giving you some real world strategies for building your company's sales culture, building value above your price, improving your referral generation, and understanding and using generational selling. If you want your company to be prepared for the next five to 10 years, the planning starts now and you need to be at this session.

How to Harness the Natural Abilities of Women in Our Businesses

More and more women are turning to the HVAC industry for business ownership, management, technical and administrative careers and are starting to fill the workforce gap that our industry continually struggles with. But how to you leverage the skills and talent of this minority group? And how do you take advantage of the differences in the way that women approach these positions? How do you build women into leaders in their jobs, businesses, and the industry? This session will open your eyes to all of the possibilities that women bring and teach you ways to harness their natural abilities to help your business grow, change, and evolve. This session is for everyone (men and women) to discover the solutions and skills to help our companies and help women optimize their potential in the HVACR industry.

Risky Business Behaviors Can Cost Serious $$$

Do you know which risky behaviors your employees are engaging in daily? Most human behavior becomes so engrained that many employees and employers don’t see it as risky, but rather, just part of their job. We will discuss case studies of how daily on the job risk can and should be avoided. And, we will show how these behaviors are impacting your company’s bottom line through real and hidden costs. Join Laramie Sandquist of Federated Insurance to learn how to be a pro-active company leader and enhance your safety culture in the process.

Old School Work Meets New School Employees – Tips for Success

As more Generation Z and Millennials are entering the workforce, office dynamics are shifting across the country. Business leaders are on a crazy teeter-totter trying to balance staying true to their mission, standards, and levels of service, with incorporating younger needs, priorities, and preferences, all while also respecting longtime, loyal employees. During this Learning Lab, Wendy Riemann of 1492, is going to share tips for being an impactful business leader, communicating better with employees of all ages, and growing younger employees into happy and committed team members who gets results. You will be sure to leave with several nuggets to enhance your workplace atmosphere and employee engagement.

Hire More Veterans Today


No one is shocked to hear that our industry is facing a major workforce shortage in the coming years. And while everyone is working to lessen the impact, a critical group is getting missed...Military Veterans. Veterans are a perfect match for the HVACR industry and you need to capitalize on recruiting and hiring them. During the fast-paced learning lab, Tim Sweeney and David Coe of Orion Talent are going to go over some best practices for recruiting, hiring, onboarding, training, and retaining Veterans.

Navigating Difficult Conversations

Anyone on your team a bulldog? Or how about a martyr? Or what about an instigator? Meandering through different personality types or behavioral styles can seem daunting and can steal the joy out of leadership. Join Rob Stader of Lee Company as he digs into proven techniques to identifying motivators and shaping behavior to successfully lead and all the different folks within it.

Watch this quick video intro to Rob's session.

Get Your Team Ready

There is no doubt that training is a huge factor in any companies success. So, why do so many contractors skip it or when cut it? It's not just technical training either. It's great to have a team full of employees who can fix systems, but if they can't properly interact with customers nor can they are going to fall flat. During this session, Steve Lauten of Total Air & Heat is going to be the moderator of a panel of leading contractors who are going to share what has worked for them, what hasn't, and why training has made the difference in their companies. This session is for all contractors, as there will be residential and commercial contractors sharing their best training methods and share how you can get more information on each of them. Panelist include: Dave Kyle, Trademasters Service Corp.; Dan Weis, Weis Comfort, Inc.

Today’s Convenience Oriented Customer

Numerous disruptive business and social trends are driving exponential change in heightened customer expectations - and these trends will accelerate. Today’s customers want convenience. The companies who win in this environment must invest in delivering exceptional customer experiences. Management training, a customer-centric employee culture, and user friendly infrastructure are just a few of the required disciplines needed to excel. The winning convenience factor is: make it easy for customers to buy. During thei session, Steve Coscia of Coscia Communications will share trends, metrics, and strategies for winning future customers and transforming current customers into promoters.

Seller’s Market: Planning Your HVAC Exit Strategy

HVAC and Plumbing contractors are finding themselves in a strong seller’s market right now. You have built a successful service business and now you want to plot your exit. SF&P Advisors work exclusively with HVAC and Plumbing contractors and have participated in over $600M worth of transactions in the space. In this session we will discuss the preparation, the process and the prize for maximizing the sale of your successful contracting business.

Networking with HVACR Women Leaders

Come join us for a session to meet and network with other women leaders in the HVACR industry. Learn what new things ACCA is doing towards Diversity in our organization, learn resources available to women today to help them navigate the HVACR industry, meet other women in this industry to help you form your own network of experts, talk about the issues women are facing in this industry, and have some fun making new friends.

Simplify Your Marketing, Multiply Your Result

See how to get more HVAC leads in less time, using fewer media, with less confusion and cost. Is this even possible? “Yes,” because we’ve done it 60 times in a row, with hundreds of contractors.

Come see this fun, fast-paced training session with COPY and PASTE templates that show you: How to slash your low-performing or “useless” media by 40% almost instantly; Exact email, Facebook and Direct Mail templates to copy; 3 simple ad campaigns, with proof of results from other contractors; and leave with a blueprint, a budget and a plan to change your marketing’s results.

Attendees will get full workbooks, examples and follow-up resources. Attendees will also get a 1-hour follow-up webinar – at no charge – to walk you through what you learn and help put it in place. (Room size and workbooks are limited. Come early. We’ll have ‘open Q&A’ before the show starts!)

Myth Busting Micro-Channel Technology

Change can be tough for HVAC field technicians. Whether it’s technology, process or equipment modifications, HVAC technicians tend to stick with what is “tried and true;” even if the new technology or process makes sense. The transition to Micro-Channel coil systems is no exception to this push back. The adoption of Micro-Channel coils has been fought tooth and nail; to the point where things have been overcomplicated. A quick search online will pull up a wealth of information that is simply not true. During this presentation, Doug Priestley (Technical Services Manager at Nortek Global HVAC) will debunk the myths surrounding Micro-Channel technology. He will demonstrate the ways in which Micro-Channel coils are no different than fin-in-tube coils when it comes to pressure, charging and cleaning.

During this presentation, Doug will cover: Common myths surrounding Micro-Channel coils and why they aren’t true; Proper methods for charging, cleaning and installing Micro-Channel systems; Troubleshooting tips for Micro-Channel systems.

At the end of this course, you should be able to understand the similarities and differences between Micro-Channel and fin-in-tube technology, debunk common myths associated with Micro-Channel coils and troubleshoot Micro-Channel technology quickly and effectively.

Why Commercial Contractors Attend

I'm really impressed with the strong focus that the IE3 Show has on commercial contracting. The high quality of speakers and the variety of topics covered make my investment in attending well worth it. All of the information was pertinent to my company, which makes the sessions a more valuable use of my time.

Lanny Huffman

Hickory Sheet Metal

I have been attending ACCA conferences for more than a decade and have never been disappointed. Over the years my participation has always resulted in a great return on my investment and has resulted in thousands of dollars to the bottom line. These takeaways were improvements in technology, culture, personal development, operational procedures, a look into the future, new products and interaction with some of the best contractors in the industry.

Joe Nichter

Comfort Systems USA Southwest

You can’t win the big game if you don’t bring your team! We always bring 3 to 4 team members and they are the ones who truly bring back the energy and ideas we put into action each year. Giving them the chance to see the show floor, meet with other contractors, and experience an event like IE3 is something you can’t find just anywhere. This event is one I seriously can't afford to miss it.

Dave Kyle

Trademasters Service Corp.


ACCA Corporate Partners