The Subject of Sheet Metal is Taboo
When Glenn Howe's extended family gets together, neither he nor his three brothers nor his son will bring up the subject of sheet metal. The reason? They are all sheet metal workers – Glenn's son is the fourth-generation to choose this line of work – and long ago their wives made the rule that it was an out of bounds subject at gatherings.
Even after 27 years at Northern Weathermakers and 17 years in the industry before joining our team, Glenn, who also serves as a field foreman, loves his work. "Customers are so grateful when you repair or replace their heating or air-conditioning system. There are always lots of smiles when we walk out the door." There is also a big sense of accomplishment, he says, when you're building a system from the ground up and it takes a team of employees to complete. Topping it off is the company's business philosophy from the top. "Quality comes first. No shortcuts. Even if it costs more. That's how we get lifetime customers and word of mouth follows," says Glenn. "I did a job a few weeks ago for the same contractor I worked with on my first job in 1991."
Little League and the Library
Glenn's employment at Northern Weathermakers has been memorable in other ways, too. "I'm fortunate that I've never had an injury on the job," he says. In addition, his supervisors over the years have reported that he's never called in sick.
One of the best jobs for Glenn was the build-out of the HVAC system at the Bartlett Public Library years ago. Not only was it an ideal commute – it's two blocks from his house -- but at the time, he was managing his son's Little League team and their field was in front of the library. He scheduled practices to begin as soon as his workday was done.
After hours, you'll find Glenn busy with hobbies introduced to him by his dad when he was young. "I don't play golf well, but I play fast. And I like to play on different courses. Typically I hit a dozen different ones during the year." His favorites include the St. Andrews Golf and Country Club in West Chicago, the Blackstone Golf Club in Marengo, and the Whitetail Ridge Golf Club in Yorkville. This past summer he was invited to play at the famous Cog Hill golf course in Lemont, where many national championships have played.
Fishing + Family = Happiness
Glenn's other pastime is fishing. In the summer he fishes on Lake Michigan out of Kenosha. In addition, every September for the past 40 years, Glenn, his brothers and a few friends have rented a cabin in Ontario and gone fishing for a week. They only keep what they consume for lunch – a mix of Walleye, Lake trout, Smallmouth Bass and Northern Pike – and the rest they catch and release.