Thank you for visiting our blog! Our President, Neil Philbrick, was asked a few questions about himself and his vision for the business. We hope you enjoy learning more about him, his family and his goals for Philbrick!
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your family: I have been married to my Beautiful wife, Jennifer, for almost 7 years. Jennifer was an elementary school teacher for Chesapeake Public Schools for 12 years, and is now a stay at home mom. We have 2 beautiful children together who have truly blessed our lives beyond words. Our 2-year-old son, Mason Robert, was born on May 27, 2013, and is a handsome little ball of fire. We were recently blessed with our daughter, Emma Lynn, on June 3, 2015, who immediately stole daddy’s heart. She is certainly one of the happiest babies I have ever seen. We feel very blessed to have 2 healthy children and I look forward to watching them grow and teaching them the important values necessary to become a successful, loving, and respected person throughout their lives. By far, family is the most important thing in my life next to the creator who has blessed our family tremendously.
How long have you been a part of Philbrick Inc? What was your first position? I have been a part of our family organization since I was 14 years old. My first position was as a helper within our plumbing department, helping out wherever I was needed, whether that be clearing a sewer line, digging a ditch, or other related duties. The very first tool I was given was a shovel. My father was trying to teach me a thing or two about the importance of education and hard work.
How have things changed since you became President? Since I became President, our company has drastically changed with regards to our operation, our services, our business segments, and our business diversity. When you have a company that has been in business as long as we have, things tend to become stagnant. Immediate changes were implemented to remain competitive and operationally efficient, in effort to improve the ability to understand the ever-changing consumer and increased competition.
What is your vision for Philbrick? Short-term and long-term? My short-term vision as the leader of our family business was to improve our processes and procedures in order to provide a better customer service experience in all departments. I also placed a large importance on our employees by providing more training on our products and services, hiring better qualified technicians, re-implementing our growth and apprenticeship plan for upcoming associates, and improving communication within all departments. A few long-term goals I have are to continue expanding our markets and customer base in other areas of Hampton Roads. In order to maintain a competitive edge in this market, we must strive to provide more products and services for our customers, while making sure we offer the best customer service possible at an affordable rate. Another role I find important, as the leader of Philbrick, is to cultivate a positive and opportunistic work place for our employees. After all, they are responsible for our growth and success over the last 6 decades and their satisfaction is vital. My number 1 priority in our business is family. Our family helping our employees’ families who, in return, help our customers and their families. Not only are we in the business of HVAC, plumbing and electrical; WE are in the business of superior customer service.
Tell us a little bit about the family history of Philbrick and how you plan to cultivate these family traditions as you move forward. The family history of Philbrick is one that I cannot put into words. It was built on the premise and goal of being the best in the industry, while continuing to support our community in many ways. Upon establishment, there was not as much competition in the marketplace. However, as the years went by and competition increased, we still remained a market leader through our strong customer service and quality of work. In the old days, customers were friends. They were members of your church. They were neighbors. They were loyal. We were loyal. It was this trust and loyalty between Philbrick and our customers and friends that was the golden rule of continued success. As my grandfather stated, “no amount of advertising, civic work, or selling could keep us in business this long unless we deliver value and customer satisfaction job after job.”
Name one important aspect you wish everyone knew about Philbrick? How about yourself as a person? In other words- what makes you (your business) unique and sets you apart from your competition. One important aspect I wish everyone knew about Philbrick is the fact that we really do want to help each and every customer. We are certainly here to generate a profit, but will never sacrifice our quality, professionalism, and customer service no matter the cost. We are a partner that you can trust. If we did not provide this, we would not be celebrating our 60 year anniversary this year.
What I wish everyone knew about myself as a person is my innermost desire, aspiration and passion to make our company GREAT moving forward. I have a genuine connection and appreciation for all of those who have dedicated their lives to our company. I also have a great appreciation for their families and the support they give our employees when the job calls for longer hours or nights. I was always told, if you take care of your employees, they will take care of your customers. Another fact about myself is that I do not believe in “titles.” Even though I am President and CEO of our organization, I work here just like everyone else. We are a team. Without the vision, efforts, and work ethic of everyone involved; we will not succeed. I am not too proud to hop into a ditch and help our plumbers finish a job or climb under a crawl space to help our guys complete the job. I think this is an important way to generate the respect and appreciation from all of the employees who work day in and day out in frigid temperatures, dangerous heat, hot attics, dirty crawl spaces, etc. This is what it takes to be a good leader, boss, employee, and person.
What personality traits do you look for in a person when they are hired to serve on the “Philbrick team?” During our hiring process, we look for employees who share the same core values as we do as a family and company. We search for candidates who are motivated to succeed and take advantage of opportunities to grow. We like to see employees who have an excellent attitude, top notch customer service skills, have a professional appearance, and take pride in providing quality, care and comfort for our customers. Employees are the difference maker and creator of our success. Without good employees, we would not be in business.
Read more about Neil Philbrick in the ‘business story’ section of The Shopper!