A Service Management Manifesto

People at a Conference

Anyone can learn from their own mistakes, but a wise man learns from the mistakes of others…

See if this sounds familiar: You’ve continued to grow in your career and are inching closer to achieving your goal of becoming a service manager. Eventually, an opportunity becomes available, you’re selected for the position. Wow, finally realized the dream, and life is good. If you’ve been in the role for a few months or a few years, you’ve probably figured out there’s a lot more expected of this position than you realized. Now what?


I started in the mid ‘80s as a service technician for the Trane commercial service franchise in Kansas City, Kansas, performing factory start-up and warranty work as well as traditional service work in the mid-to-heavy commercial and industrial market. After several years, I wanted something different from my career and pursued the sales avenue before moving into increasingly responsible positions of management. Over the past 20-plus years, I worked my way up, holding sales rep, field supervisor, operations manager, sales manager, and general manager positions. Most recently, I’ve worked as regional vice president of service operations position for one of the largest non-union mechanical contractors in the country, and now I provide HVAC coaching and consulting services for Business Development Resources Inc. Along the way, I’ve learned the service business from the ground up; discovered things that work and don’t work; been around successful and unsuccessful people; and watched companies grow, collapse, or just indefinitely struggle to maintain.

Depending on the size and breadth of your company’s offerings, the service manager can be responsible for a seemingly endless number of things. Some obvious areas: