One of the persons I regularly touch base with is Raphael Khlat, President of Faisal Jassim Trading Company, and he is a fount of insights, having literally seen it all over the years as a manufacturer and channel partner.
Raphael was one of those I interviewed for this issue’s cover story on pricing, a topic that has touched a raw nerve amongst traders of HVACR equipment. Besides pricing, he spoke with passion about a whole range of issues, which I could not accommodate in the article but which I would like to present here…
Raphael spoke about how the HVACR industry is still very slow when it comes to adapting to changes. He said he still feels there is not really much acceptance for something new, mainly because of the way contracts and purchasing are being done.
A major issue he highlighted was how developers themselves are not requesting for new products or features to be developed. And well-meaning consultants don’t have enough money to support new ideas, because they are being squeezed on margins. They come into their own, he said, only when they are confronted with unique problems that needs to be resolved.
The industry needs a shake-up. R&D, he said, should be put on top of the agenda. Developers should take the leadership and announce to the consultant, “Let’s research, and I am ready to pay for it.”
Raphael’s words are directly relevant for campaigns aimed at improving energy efficiency –as positively impacting the striving to lower Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) and indirect greenhouse gas emissions. They are relevant in efforts aimed at improving Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) and a whole host of virtues that underpin regional socio-economic and sustainable development targets.
Tackling major challenges requires a mindset change; the rest is less daunting. As the famous sportswriter, Brian Glanville said in his book, The Olympian: “That is why athletics are important. They demonstrate the scope of human possibility, which is unlimited. The inconceivable is conceived, and then it is accomplished.”