- Tech Insights
Standard Insulating Co., Inc. was founded in 1928. Keida and her business partner purchased the company from her parents in 2020.
Keida has transformed the company into Standard - Heating, Cooling, Insulating, creating one of the largest Central New York HVAC and insulation companies. Standard services existing homes, new construction, and commercial buildings. A 20-year employee of this family-owned business, “One of our main focuses is serving our community, especially low-income families,” said Keida. “Our staff will diagnose the best way to improve the safety and efficiency of a home while finding resources, grants, and state funding to help pay for the upgrades,” she continued. “In most cases we help the homeowner get FREE energy upgrades with help from these programs.”
Under Keida’s leadership, Standard is disrupting the industry offering FREE HVAC Service calls.
“All other HVAC companies will charge a fee to just show up to diagnose a problem with your heating or cooling system. We DO NOT!” she insisted. “Instead, we offer an hour worth of evaluation and mechanical fixing and if we can solve the problem with no parts needed, the visit is free.”
As a calculated risk taker, self-improvement and personal happiness are at the core of what Keida believes and emulates. She is empathetic while simultaneously pushing her team to be better than they were yesterday. Keida and her Executive Leadership Team (ELT) set ambitious goals and are not afraid of making mistakes along the way. “Mistakes are expected and accepted as I am often challenging things from different perspectives,” Keida explained.
As President and CEO, Keida, focuses on things like honor commitments and being relentless about self-improvement and life-long learning. These are the “standards” that the company makes part of their day-to-day approach. She has an open-door policy, making herself available to the organization.
In a unique, and strategic approach, Keida has developed a transparent compensation structure. “Celebrations and fun time are a regular occurrence,” said Keida. “Picnics (employees get paid to participate), quarterly meetings, sharing company metrics, and communicating goals and growth are a priority.
Keida implemented an annual $2,000 vacation reimbursement policy for all employees. “We want our employees to go on vacation,” she explained. “We found that if we gave a $2,000 bonus, our employees were paying a bill or getting vehicle repairs rather than taking themselves and/or their loved ones on vacation.”
Autonomy, personal growth, and problem solving are the pillars that keep Standard growing. Standard offers professional development and is always seeking to utilize outside opportunities to improve its people. “Technical knowledge is important but working well together and growing our team into confident leaders is my biggest focus,” Keida emphasized.
“Our emerging leaders are enrolled in outside development programs to help them become the best people they can be which will in turn make Standard the best company it can be.”
For the new entrepreneur, Keida suggests fining a mentor and other organizations you admire in which to surround yourself. She puts forth that this strategy will constantly inspire you to keep learning and improving. “Don’t ever be the smartest one in the room,” Keida began. “Be a lifelong learner…I am currently working on my MBA at Boston University. But the degree is not what I seek, it’s the knowledge and the people I am working with, that are so very valuable,” she added.
For the more seasoned business entity, she advises embracing the sentiment that the customer is always right – even when they are not. Disrupt the norms. Challenge the ways an industry has done things for hundreds of years. “Oh, and really good marketing,” Keida added. “Today’s marketing isn’t just tv and newspapers. Creativity and the right approach can mean the difference between customers seeing you before or after your competition.”
“Standard’s future is so bright we need shades,” Keida said with a smile. “I bought each member of the company a pair of sunglasses as a gift at our holiday party last year. I wanted a playful way to make our team understand that although we have aggressive goals, we will get there together and have fun doing it.”
Keida plans to expand Standard across New York State and sees it happening very quickly. They have opened their first branch in the Capital District and will scale beyond that within the next year or two.
President & CEO
Standard Insulating Co
Standard has been a premier insulation provider for more than 90 years. We have serviced the Mohawk Valley and Capital Region of New York for decades, installing and maintaining services like HVAC systems, air purification systems, and more.