Clint Robertson, Star of HGTV's Boise Boys
Originally published: 09.01.21 by HVACR Business Staff
Publisher Terry Tanker sat down with Clint Robertson a licensed attorney, CPA, real estate broker, mediator, contractor, negotiator, and serial entrepreneur. He's half of the hit HGTV series Boise Boys. Luke Caldwell is his partner. The Boise Boys are celebrity partners and spokesmen for American Standard Heating and Air Conditioning.
1. What's your secret ambition?
Win the World Series of Poker.
2. Would you rather hit a holein one, throw a touchdown pass or hit a home run?
I’ve hit home runs and thrown TD’s but never hit a hole in one, so I’d LOVE the feeling of seeing that golf ball disappear from the tee box!
3. Do you own any crypto currency?
I’ve got just enough to not be left behind when/if crypto booms.
4. What's your favorite possession?
My refrigerator and its contents.
5. What's the one thing you wish you would have said yes to when you were younger?
Living life slower and more intentional.
6. Who is your mentor?
Experience (or as my grandfather would’ve put it “The School of Hard Knocks”).
7. Other than finding employees what is your most immediate challenge?
My most immediate challenge is always my family — not because they’re difficult but because I’ve always put a high priority on meeting their needs. As Sandy and I transition to empty nesters, it seems that their needs are even more present as two sons navigate medical school and as the youngest son prepares to go to medical school.
8. How are you addressing that?
Hard work expanding my businesses and lots of prayer.
9. In 20 words or less can you describe your company?
Construction, Law, Poker, Consulting. I’ll let you try to figure that out!
10. What's the most important quality you have to have as a leader?
Compassion. I’ve had employees in my life since I was in my 20s, and my tact has changed significantly since then. As a hard driving young entrepreneur, I spent most of my leadership driving the vision. These days, I’ve come to the conclusion that the purpose of my businesses is to benefit others. Without being a pushover, I’ve realized that the best thing a leader can do is serve those under his charge.
11. Supply chain issues are effecting every company. How are you managing this?
Patience, diligence, resourcefulness and a lot of explaining. Nine out of 10 customers/clients who have lived through this past two years understand and sympathize with the difficulties of the broken product chain… and I don’t let those who don’t understand ruin my peace trying to be a squeaky wheel.
12. What are you forecasting for 2022 or is this really just a guess?
One way or the other, 2022 will be a breakout year. Virus or not, the human spirit to fly can only be contained for so long. Either the COVID risk will subside or people will decide the risk of living scared is greater than the risk of disease.
13. What aspect of managing is most satisfying to you?
Achieving the level of confidence in my employees to hand over tasks previously reserved solely to me. That’s freedom.
14. What has been your most recent "the buck stops here" moment?
Every business has dissatisfied customers. It’s a fact of life. However, I’ve found in most cases when the owner takes “ownership” of those moments, problem customers/clients become a business’ biggest cheerleader. I currently have the world’s most particular, whiny, and unpleasable couple for whom we’ve been doing punch items for almost three years. We solve one of their “issues” and they find two others. But, we keep going back because no other company would and that’s what’s sets us apart. Here’s to eventually finding their last issue!
15. What do you view as your most important management responsibility?
Surrounding myself with kind, honest and motivated people. Give me motivated people with good hearts and I’ll change the world!
16. How have you kept employees focused working remotely?
Fortunately due to the nature of my businesses and favorable jurisdictions, none of my businesses have been required to go remote. People need the stimulation of the presence of other people, and I can only imagine the hardships of businesses that had to go remote.
17. How do you inspire your managers and other team members?
Empathy. Everyone is different and everyone has their own set of pressures, motivations, and hurts. Care for the person and most of the time they care for their job and for the well-being of the business.
18. Where do you think most leaders really struggle?
Getting over their own ego.
19. What can they do to overcome this?
Priorities. The advice to “love your neighbor as you love yourself” is probably the best ever given.
20. What parting words of wisdom do you have for Q4 and 2022?
Don’t stop. Tough times squeeze out your true essence. Make sure you like what’s dripping out of you during the squeeze.