Colorado Small Business Owner Steps Up to Invest in Employees Amid Inflation, Housing Shortage
Mark Harrill, of All American Heating in Fairplay, Colorado, raised the wages of every employee of the company in order to counter the affordable housing shortages facing workers that live and work in the Front Range of the Rockies. Mr. Harrill wants to accomplish two things with this change: 1) To let his employees know exactly how much they are appreciated and reward them for their hard work. 2) To set an example in the business community by injecting dollars into the local economy.
Numerous studies show that employees making a living wage are more satisfied in their daily employment and are less likely to leave. But Harrill’s biggest reason for making this change is not to reduce turnover – although that is a benefit in today’s labor shortage. He wants to make sure he takes care of his people and does the right thing. Harrill believes this is the path forward for business owners – that we are seeing a sea change in the American labor market, and he wants to help set the standard by valuing his people and providing a stable and healthy work environment. Much like Dan Price of Gravity Payments, Harrill believes in the importance of being a socially-conscious business, paying people what they are worth, and generally treating people the way they should be treated. That happy employees provide better customer service is a bonus side-effect.
A 30-year veteran of corporate environments in marketing, IT, and e-commerce in a variety of industries, Harrill wants All American Heating to be a different kind of company than those he’s experienced in the past.
“I want my employees to feel like they are part of something special – a company that does things the right way. I want them to know how important each and every person is to me, and how much I want them to succeed. I also want to be the best in the area at what we do, and do that by providing top-level service, doing great work, and treating our customers with respect.”
Living and working in an affluent community like Breckenridge and the surrounding ski areas can be challenging for permanent residents. A large portion of the residences in the area are second or vacation homes with out-of-state owners who are well-off. In addition, the region relies heavily on tourism in ski season and for hiking and other outdoor activities in the summer for revenue. Certainly, this is a beautiful and majestic area, but these factors have two effects: they drive up the cost of living, and they make it difficult to find affordable housing.
Harrill hopes to combat these effects by taking the initiative and making the investment in his employees, enabling them to live in the area in which they work, and by helping the City of Breckenridge maintain and upgrade hydronic heating systems in city or county-owned affordable housing developments.
“It could go either way,” says Harrill. “It could work out great for everyone involved, or it could break me. I am putting myself out there to walk the talk and to show that our company believes in our employees and in our community.”
All American Heating currently has positions open for experienced HVAC Service Technicians and Installers, Master Plumbers, and Customer Service Representatives.
All American Heating, Inc. is a full-service, locally-owned, HVAC company and NATE-certified Mechanical Contractor located in Fairplay, Colorado, serving Summit County and Park County with the highest standards and integrity since 2003. We handle all types of plumbing services, hydronic heating, and HVAC projects. Our staff of factory-trained, professional technicians specializes in providing top-quality plumbing and heating system designs, installations, repairs, and service. All American Heating is your honest, fair, and dependable home HVAC and plumbing services provider, and is at your service.
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