General


What Are You Thankful for?

What Are You Thankful for?

It’s that time of year again.  Enjoying a long holiday weekend, getting together with family, eating too much and watching football games.  Rushing from place to place trying to get an early start on Christmas shopping.  Studying hard for end of semester exams or finishing budgets for 2014.  Running the last of your maintenance agreements before the cold weather arrives and demand service starts getting hectic.  Finishing that construction project before the end of the year.  It seems that it should not yet be this time of the year and we remark, “I can’t believe it’s already Thanksgiving, the year has gone by so fast.”  Indeed it has.  We live in a busy world which seems to spin a little faster every cycle.

The other day I took a walk through a nature preserve near our house.  It is a 2 acre retreat where I can decompress from some of the craziness described above.  At one point I noticed a young lady well-dressed in a matching jogging suit enter the trail with her dog.  She was talking a mile a minute on her cell phone and barely acknowledged me as we passed.  Some time later I passed her again as she was returning to her starting point, she was still on her phone and did not acknowledge me at all.  I had to wonder whether or not she arrived back home more stressed than when she started her walk.  Had her life burdens increased as a result of that phone call or had she added items to her to do list?  I’ll bet there are a couple of things she did not do, and that is to enjoy the beauty of a colorful late fall in Texas, or the look and feel of a perfect fall day with mild temperatures.  The large trees near the creek where she lives were showing off in their display of red, orange, yellow and green.  We don’t always get a lot of color this time of the year in Texas, but this fall was not one of those years.

In the midst of all your plans and all your to do lists, don’t forget to take time to appreciate and give thanks for all those things we don’t often think about.  Our health, the display of nature around us, our business, our friends and our family.  This is the time of the year to put a little balance in our lives.  Happy Thanksgiving.


North Texas Giving Day

North Texas Giving Day

Many of you are probably participating in your employers 401(k), and that same employer will likely match your donation in some percentage up to a maximum.  That employer match and the return it provides for makes it a logical first step in your retirement plan.

Some of you may have a favorite charity that you support and/or give to, there are many worthwhile charities in North Texas.  Wouldn’t it be great if you were to make a donation to your favorite charity and have it leveraged the same way your employer does for your 401(k)?  Well, that can happen if your favorite charity is registered with the Communities Foundation of Texas (CFT).

There is an event in North Texas that happens once a year, this year it is happening on Thursday, September 19.  It is called North Texas Giving Day and it is sponsored By the Communities Foundation of Texas and is transacted through Donor Bridge of Texas.  The communities foundation of Texas has its roots in The Dallas Community Chest Trust Fund going back to July, 1953.  CFT provides grants to support a variety of community issues in North Texas, and it encourages individuals, families and businesses to partner with them to fulfill their charitable goals.  Their trustees steward $775 million in assets across nearly 900 charitable funds.  They seek to educate the community regarding pressing needs any organizations that are addressing them.

Check out the link below to see if one of your favorite charities is listed with CFT, and if they are and you are inclined to donate on September 19, your gift of $25 or more will be enhanced by CFT on a prorated basis, providing even more value for your favorite charity.  In 2012, donors made more than 37,000 gifts totaling $14.4 million benefiting more than 900 nonprofits on North Texas giving Day.

Check out all the registered organizations on this link, one of which is a favorite of Callahan Roach – The Joseph Groh Foundation.  This is a great way to help your favorite charity meet their annual goals.

http://www.donorbridgetx.org/


Lights – Camera – Action!

Lights - Camera - Action!

Recently a casting director from Hollywood contacted Kyle Gargaro of the ACH & R news about a new show they were doing on CEOs of small business.  According to the casting agent, a major broadcast network is conducting a nationwide search for a small business with 50 or more employees to participate in a new, groundbreaking, thought-provoking television series that encourages employee teambuilding and problem solving in the workplace.  It sounds like a reality show revolving around a business organization.  The casting agent is Pitman Casting and they have been involved in such shows as Extreme Makeover Home Edition and Celebrity Fit Club.

Might your company be interested in such an opportunity?  Being showcased on national TV would not only be good for the industry, it would be great for your business, Gargaro commented.  No amount of marketing could substitute for the exposure your business would get.  You would also be instantly seen as an expert in your market if you were featured on national TV.  Not only that, you would probably find some of the better techs in the area knocking on your door.

If you are chosen, the company CEO will receive $25,000 for appearing on the show.  All in all, a pretty heady experience if your company was chosen to participate in this series.  This opportunity is not for every business, but for the right company it could provide a tremendous economic boost.  To obtain more information and fill out an application, e-mail businessshow@pitmancasting.com.


Texas 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Charity Package, Support The Joe Groh Foundation

Callahan Roach is an enthusiastic supporter Of the Joseph Groh Foundation

Texas 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Race Charity Package, Support The Joe Groh Foundation

When you logon to the Callahan Roach website and scroll to the bottom, you’ll see a logo for the Joseph Groh foundation on the left.  Joe is an individual who worked in the HVAC industry for little over 30 years before being rendered a quadriplegic as a result of a bicycle accident.  Since that time, Joe set up a 501(c)(3) charity designed to provide funding to those affiliated with the construction trades industry who are living with life altering disabilities, and Callahan Roach has been an enthusiastic supporter of the organization since the very beginning.  To date, tens of thousands of dollars have been raised and distributed to individuals in need, you can look at the foundation website (josephgrohfoundation.org) to read their stories.

The foundation is announcing an exciting….  But VERY limited opportunity that we wanted to make you aware of.

They have 2 tickets available for the Sunday, November 3rd AAA Texas 500 NASCAR Sprint Cup Race, PLUS 2 Pit Passes!
The donation for this package is only $250 but it is valued at much more than that.  It is a first-come first-served opportunity, so if you are interested call the nuber below.  These tickets won’t last long so call today!

For Tickets Call the Joe Groh at the foundation at 214-998-9749

Callahan Roach Encourages Philanthropy

Philanthropy can not only be accomplished through the gift of dollars, although there is no substitute.  It can also be accomplished through the gift of time and the employees of Callahan Roach lead by example.  In the busy-ness that is everyone’s daily life, time can be a resource as valuable as money.  In addition to their involvement at the Groh foundation, employees at Callahan Roach participate in the events of a number of other charitable organizations including Captain Hopes Kids And the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  Like many of you, they believe when we all support each other, we’re all a little stronger.


Could Your Hiring Practices Be Considered Discriminatory?

Could Your Hiring Practices Be Considered Discriminatory?

Might you not pass a criminal background
check because you used them?

According to an article in a recent trade publication,* having a clean background check as a requirement for hiring could become problematic.  What, you say?  Am I supposed to hire criminals?

A recent statement from the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) said “and employers use of an individual’s criminal history in making employment decisions may, in some instances, violate the prohibition against employment discrimination under the Civil Rights Act of 1964.”  The EEOC added that employers should “eliminate policies or practices that exclude people from employment based on any criminal record.”  This is not made up!

Todd McCracken, president of the National Small Business Association said it best.  “State and federal courts will allow potentially devastating tort lawsuits against businesses that hire felons who commit crimes at the workplace or in customer’s homes.  Yet the EEOC is threatening to launch lawsuits if they do not hire the same felons.”

This latest guidance from the EEOC concerning background checks stems from title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 which prohibits employment discrimination based on race, color, religion, sex or national origin.  Notice there is no mention of criminal history, so why is the EEOC doing this?

According to Brook Duncan III, attorney and Legal Tools Resource for ACCA, “These agencies are supposed to have the expertise to interpret and enforce the law, but over the last few years they’ve become activist agencies.  They are stretching the limits of the law.”

So what is a contractor supposed to do?  Duncan still recommends the use of background checks by HVAC contractors whose employees are routinely and customers homes and workplaces area and but he notes that contractors should not be lulled into a false sense of security, as most criminal background checks are spotty at best.  Duncan further revises contractors to do their due diligence when hiring by talking to an applicant’s former employer (if possible) and conducting as thorough a background check as possible.  The EEOC has not made this law, but it may be an indication of where they intend to take their enforcement activity.
Duncan sums everything up by saying “you need to pick your poison.  Would you rather defend a lawsuit against the rapist you sent to Mrs. Jones house or would you rather defend a discrimination claim?  I’ll take the discrimination claim any day,” he said.

* Article referenced is from June 3rd column entitled “Employment Background Checks Drawing Government Scrutiny” published by ACH&R News


Joseph Groh Foundation Golf Tournament

A Unique Foundation Serving the Construction Trades Industry 

On Monday, May 6, 2013 the Joseph Groh foundation will host its fourth annual golf tournament fundraiser At Prestonwood Country Club in Dallas, Texas.

Joseph Groh Foundation Golf Tournament
Confused golfers at the 2010 tournament

Who is this foundation?  They are a unique 501(c) 3 public charity because 100% of their grants are directed to individuals related to the construction trades industry who are living with life altering disabilities.  If you haven’t noticed on their website, Callahan Roach is a supporter of this foundation and has been since their inception in 2009.

The foundation was started by Joseph Groh, a 35 year veteran of the HVAC industry prior to being rendered a quadriplegic from a bicycle accident in 2008.  The primary mission of the foundation is to provide financial support for individuals related to the construction trades industry (plumbers, HVAC, electricians, roofers etc.) who are living with life altering disabilities.  In the past, the support has ranged from providing handicapped accessible vehicles to specialized rehab equipment for those who are paralyzed to home and bath remodels and more.  To date, the foundation has issued grants to 11 different individuals, their stories can be found on the website.

The secondary mission of the foundation is to provide education and information for individuals living with spinal cord and other permanent disabilities.  This is primarily accomplished through its website, which hosts well over 100 links to other websites, categorized by subject ranging from US government sites to individual state resources to research sites to rehab facilities to much, much more.  You can learn more about Joe and this foundation by visiting Josephgrohfoundation.org.

The best ball golf tournament referenced above is the major yearly fund raiser for this foundation, so if you live in the DFW MetroPlex please consider bringing a foursome and joining in the fun.  If you are not in the DFW area, please consider a sponsorship opportunity, many different levels are available.  For more information about golf or sponsorship, go to http://www.josephgrohfoundation.org/golf.html


Don’t Forget the Local Guys

There is a great article in the August 6th HVACR news commentary section entitled, “Keep Track of Local Politics” by Kyle Gargaro. Did you see it?

In it, Kyle talks about the fact that we have reached the silly part of the 2012 election. You know, that part that wonders whether Mitt Romney cannot relate to ordinary Americans because he owns a horse or whether President Obama can be trusted because one of his mentors liked to take pictures of naked women.

He mentions however that this is a very important election for small business owners. Whomever we elect will greatly influence such key issues such as tax reform, health care, tax credits, estate taxes and more. With all of the hubbub surrounding the national election, Kyle advises small business owners not to forget about local elections. It is at this level where your influence is likely to be most impactful.

If you write or call your local congressman about an issue you are passionate about, you are likely to get a nice form letter in return. If however you contact your mayor, city manager or city councilmember, there is a much better chance you will actually be able to talk with someone who can leverage influence regarding your issue of passion. Kyle urges the reader to think about how easy is it to do business in your city. Are there regulatory or licensing hoops that are affecting your bottom line? Are there existing laws not being enforced because of lack of resources which are causing you to be less competitive because you follow the law? Can they provide market research information which can help your business better market to potential customers?

Who knows Kyle muses, maybe it will even give you the inside track on plumbing/heating/electrical work for City Hall.


Welcome to the Best Little Blog House in Texas

There are millions of blogs out there, what is the difference between the really good ones and the really bad ones?  I would propose that the difference is “you.”  What am I talking about?

 

The subject matter in the average (and worst) blog is very “I” focused.  The discussion centers around the thoughts and opinions of the writer as they try to foist their beliefs on the reading public.  In a really good blog, the writer is nearly invisible.  The topics are informative, interesting and thought provoking, but most importantly they focus on what is important to the reader.  That is what the Callahan Roach blog will endeavor to be about — you the reader.

 

So, as we kick off the newest blog on the World Wide Web, (at least for the next few seconds) we want to hear from you.  What is it about your business that keeps you awake at night?  Is your service department returning the kind of efficiency and profitability that you would like?  Is the economy and your competitors causing you to “price for survival” as opposed to pricing for profitability?  If so, how do you break out of that vicious spiral?

 

So, set your RSS feed for this blog site and let us know what is on your mind and what it is you would like to see from this blog.  For our part, we will keep “you” in mind as we blog, and we’ll strive hard to live up to the title of this blog post!