Richard Dvorak

Head Coach

Richard Dvorak is a longtime veteran of the HVAC industry with over 39 years of total industry experience spanning every conceivable role in an HVAC business. Starting from scratch, he has owned his own company for 36 years, growing his business into the dominant player in his market. Starting in 1998, Richard joined BDR as a coaching client and he has attended dozens of BDR's HVAC-specific training classes & business planning workshops over this 14-year period. Thus, he is very knowledgeable in BDR's business philosophies, systems and practices. Further, he has held member and leadership roles in 3 different HVAC trade associations for a combined 41 years of service, and was recently appointed to the Michigan State "Board of Mechanical Rules" for a 4-year term.

In 1976, Richard started his own company in Freeland, MI. Answer Heating & Cooling grew to be the largest HVAC business in the mid-Michigan region, attaining $7.5 million in sales with a staff exceeding 60 employees. Richard has experience with all sizes and growth phases that an HVAC business experiences. He has worked in all roles and job functions. He freely admits that success did not come without hard work and some failures along the way. In 1998, growth stalled due to the economy and Richard established a 15-year relationship with BDR for HVAC-specific training and business coaching. Subsequently, "growth and success attained new levels with the guidance and structure that was provided by BDR."

As Answer Heating & Cooling grew, Richard settled into running Sales & Installation while his partner ran the Office Operations and Service. He became highly proficient at Design/Build projects ranging up to $1 million in size and designing and installing geothermal systems. He became an expert in Labor Management. One of Richard's biggest accomplishments was to build out the Commercial, Retrofit and New Construction departments – simultaneously! This included sales, management and staff development & training, department structure and operational processes and procedures. He hired the right people and set up the management structure. He built the systems to measure performance and to provide strategic communication and cross-departmental communication to steer and guide management to run their departments autonomously. This model elevated Richard to a strategic role enabling him to "float" between departments to where his guidance and training were needed and to provide inspiration and motivation to all employees. Richard was free from tactical duties, allowing him to work "on" his business and to pursue personal interests.

BDR's coaching clients will benefit greatly from the experience that Richard earned through: the structural & business process evolution that occurs when growing a business from $0 to $7 million; ever-changing market conditions over 36 years, including several recessions and business-mix shifts between new construction, retrofit, geothermal and service; and increasingly rapid product technology changes. Through all the "change" and challenges, Richard will tell you that he learned a great deal, including the importance of treating and compensating his employees fairly. "Happy employees equal happy customers, equal employment stability and work-product excellence". In fact, Richard gives great credit to his employees in helping to build a successful business.

Being a leader and a coach and a mentor is about giving back. Few HVAC business owners have given as much as Richard Dvorak. He was a member of the Michigan Tri-County Heating & Plumbing Association for 17-years, from 1976 to 1993, serving as Secretary, Vice President and President. He was a 17-year member of the Michigan chapter of ACCA (Air Conditioning Contractors of America) from 1990 to 2007, serving on the Board of Directors and as Chairman of the Board in 1997. Richard was a member of Associated Builders & Contractors (ABC) – Saginaw Valley Chapter for 7 years. Positions held: Secretary, Vice Chairman, Chairman of the Board and Board of Directors. ABC is the "merit shop" construction industry's voice with the legislative, executive and judicial branches of the federal government and with state and local governments, as well as with the news media. ABC's mission is the advancement of the merit shop construction philosophy, which encourages open competition and a free-enterprise approach that awards contracts based solely on merit, regardless of labor affiliation.

With 36 years as a leading business owner serving his community, plus 41-years of trade association service to our industry, Richard's accomplishments and leadership were recognized by the Governor of Michigan. He was recently appointed to the Michigan State "Board of Mechanical Rules" for a 4-year term. The board makes recommendations for mechanical code rules, issues mechanical contractor's licenses to qualified applicants, and makes all orders, rules, and regulations necessary for enforcement of the provisions of the act. In other words, Richard was appointed to work at the highest levels attainable in the state of Michigan, in a highly influential role, to improve the professionalism and work-quality of our industry.

From these three distinct perspectives: as a leading and highly successful business owner; as a BDR training and business coaching client for many years; and through his extensive trade association service & leadership, Richard has earned a tremendous amount of experience, expertise and knowledge that he is now leveraging for the benefit of BDR's coaching clients. WAHOO!!!!