Woman Entrepreneurs – Rising To the Top
Written by Lori Anne Oliwa
Sunday, 04 May 2008
Arctic Air Conditioning – PearlyGates Accessories – A Taste of Rubies – Sebastian’s Hair-Em and Day Spa THE TEAM APPROACH
What started 31 years ago as a tiny business has evolved into a large, thriving enterprise, according to Paulette and Howard Albert, the dynamic duo behind Arctic Air Conditioning, Heating and Air Conditioning Specialists. “I started in this business in 1977 with Paulette,” Howard Albert says. “Now we are one of the largest Lennox dealers in North America, and we have definitely prospered,” he added. In 2006 and 2007, Arctic Air was recognized with a Circle of Excellence Award from Lennox, which recognizes the top 40 dealers in the country. To date in 2008, the company has a 100% customer satisfaction rating from Lennox, according to Howard.
The company employs 28 people and has 16 vehicles on the road, according to Paulette, and operates 24 hours per day, seven days per week, and 365 days per year. “We started very humbly but have 16,000 clients now,” she noted proudly. “There is always a live person to talk to, and this is part of our company philosophy,” Paulette added.
As of April 1, 2008, the company will be relocating to a location several times larger than its current location. “Everyone will have his or her own office, and it will be wonderful,” Howard said, adeptly maneuvering between boxes marked for the new destination.
Reflecting on the success of the company, Howard emphasized personal service and honesty. “Many companies close on the weekends; we do not. In the heat of the summer and the cold of the winter, we provide service,” he stated. Paulette mentioned that regardless of who calls, someone will first try and troubleshoot with the client, or prospective client. “The office will try and walk them through the problem. They might be able to fix it themselves and save the cost of a service call,” she said.
The couple is also setting a fine example for their son Ross, who works with them. “He wears many hats,” Howard joked, “and it is good for clients to know that the business will continue.”