Q&A with MTB’s Owner: What Makes MTB Different

For more than 40 years, MTB has been a part of the greater Charlotte community. Our family business is owned and operated by Jennifer Miller (Thomas), Britt Thomas, Dan Miller and Betsy Miller. Check out the Q&A with our co-owner Britt who talks about the HVAC industry and what makes MTB different.Why did you first start a heating and air conditioning company?
An opportunity arose to be my own boss and improve the lives of those close to me.
How has the industry changed over the decades?
Change is expected! In business, changing expectations is the constant, and so we have seen great shifts in customer and employee expectations. Over the years we’ve worked hard at creating career pathways so expectations are on the table. This has helped retain happier employees with a higher aptitude for customer service.
What has changed with technology — is it easier or more complicated now?
First, nothing about this industry is easy. However, the remarkable changes to products and technology have removed some major stressors. For example, the ability to simply communicate with field personnel has consistently improved over the past 10-15 years.
Which innovations are you most excited about?
GPS systems, information accessibility, platform changes in equipment and controls.
Which customers have been with you the longest? What makes them special customers? What have they told you about why they’ve stayed with MTB?
My internal customers. I have some of our very first employees still with us today! I’ve spent years of my life with these folks, they’ve become family. I think trust in ownership is what keeps them happy here and that is the most rewarding aspect of business ownership for my wife and I.
Why is MTB uniquely qualified to offer a focus on building science?
When I left the geological field to pursue this as a new career, I was interested in learning as much as possible….the building science aspect was really where I hung my hat! Understanding how the home lived and breathed was vital to design and comfort. Within our company, some part of building science is taught, on some level, daily.
What kind of training does this involve?
It’s constant. Our team is always looking for or attending new classes for accreditation, certifications or qualifications. New products are forever being tested and adopted. We are kinda HVAC geeks if you will.
How does it make the technicians more knowledgeable and capable than your competitors?
I believe, truly understanding building science, as it applies to design and the existing structure, creates a cornerstone for identifying and protecting against problems. I think most service technicians could benefit from a stronger background in design and installation, even building science. So that’s what we do.
What do you look for in a technician?
Great attitude, willingness to learn and problem solving skills.
What are the customer benefits of choosing a family-owned business?
As a consumer, I like to know and ultimately trust those I do business with. It’s a relationship. Hopefully, the consistent interactions with our team members will deliver a certain friendly value, creating a level of comfort and trust for years to come.
What is it like to run a business with family members?
Tough — next question.
What are the advantages?
You never lose focus on what’s important!
Where do you see the industry going in the future? What technological improvements are here, or on the horizon?
I think the “do it yourself” world has a lot to learn about HVAC and why they should hire a professional.