Q: Kindly give our readers an introduction to your business. Please include what your business is all about, in which city you are located and if you have offices in multiple locations/ cities.
Ans: Worlock Air Conditioning is a true comfort specialist providing home comfort since 1987. We are family owned and operated in Peoria, AZ and the surrounding cities. We specialize in residential air conditioning, some of our top brands of equipment are Trane, American Standard and Carrier. We align ourselves with customers that are dedicated to top rated products and services.
Q: Kindly give us a brief description about yourself (it should include your brief educational or entrepreneurial background and list some of your major achievements).
Ans: I have over 30 years of experience. In 1992, I attended RSES (Refrgieration Service Engineer Society) completed all levels of electrical, mechanical. I went through Independent Electrical Contractor Association in 1998.
Q: What inspired you to (start a new business venture) or (to make significant changes in an existing business)? How did the idea for your business come about?
Ans: The reason I started an HVAC business is because of the demand and need of air conditioning in Arizona. I was tired of working for someone and decided I wanted more freedom.
Q: What three pieces of advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
Ans: I would give the following three advices: I would let other entrepreneurs know they should sell only top quality products, be competitive and to always know the customer is right. It is not worth fighting with your customer. For example I may have a signed contract and already collected the deposit and at the last minute the customer may want a Wi-FI thermostat when that is not in my contract. I’m not going to loose a customer/sell over a $300 item.
Q: What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?
Ans: Educate yourself on innovative technology and quality. An individual needs to learn the higher-standards of products that deliver reliability and comfort. As a contractor, I have developed a system that will deliver quality products to the consumer.
Q: How many hours do you work a day on average?
Ans: Our team puts in an average of 8-10 hours a day on installs. During the warmer months, I do estimates after installs which means working 12-15 hour days.
Q: To what do you most attribute your success?
Ans: My success is because of one simple word-Plan. Plan for sales, gross profit and net profit. This is a seasonal business. Some months are better than other months. To achieve the revenue I’m looking for, how many installations are needed? This leads to manpower requirements. Success is planning and building a sustainable business.
Q: How do you go about marketing your business? What has been your most successful form of marketing?
Ans: We use traditional marketing (SEO) and also advertise with Home Advisors. I believe our most successful form of marketing is referrals because it didn’t cost anything and they can build customer relationships.
Q: Where did your organizations funding/capital come from and how did you go about getting it? How did you obtain investors for your venture?
Ans: When I first started my business, we financed our van. It was very little money to get started.
Q: What is the best way to achieve long-term success?
Ans: Best way to achieve long term success is to always have drive. You have to have the determination to work harder that most and make the sure you get the job done. I have never left a customer without air once I showed up to their house. If I am stuck in the attic for 8 hours than it is what it is. No one achieves their goal by giving up, but with perseverance, reaching your goal becomes a possibility.
Q: Where you see yourself and your business in 5 – 10 years?
Ans: We see steady growth in the next 5-10 years. We will be a household name in our market space in Peoria and the surrounding cities.
Q: Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?
Ans: I like how Precision Air runs their business. They started out small but now have over 10 trucks. I’m aware of my competition and because of this it enables me to set my prices competitively and respond to rival marketing campaigns with our own initiatives.
Q: How important have good employees been to your success?
Ans: Without employees, I would have no business. To do an install, it takes three guys minimum. Cultivating work relationships through proper and clear communication is the core of improving engagement. For this business, success to me is having my employees show up.
Q: How long do you stick with an idea before giving up?
Ans: We research and develop what customers are looking for to make sure we have good success. I don’t give up because I want to make sure the customer is happy.
Q: What motivates you?
Ans: What motivates me is learning new things. I like to work with my hands obviously, and it brings me great joy. Connecting with tools to create things gives me something that no electronic gadget can give me. Seeing an attic completely gutted and the new go in within 8 hours makes me feel valuable.
Q: What are your ideals?
Ans: Your ideal company should help make you an ideal employer. I like to be involved in existing challenges that allow me to use my interest in and experience with growing sustainability efforts.
Q: How do you generate new ideas?
Ans: An open mind is a valuable resource. When your interested in new possibilities and able to think more creative I think you will stay more interested in your role. Technology is always changing and we have so many new smart home thermostats. These new ideas help myself plus my customers
Q: How do you define success?
Ans: Success in the HVAC world is having a good personable personality. No one wants to deal with a person who’s not approachable. Talking with your customers, you make them feel that they’re part of the whole repair/install project. People buy from people they like! You will be working inside someone’s home for 8-10 hours so remember they want to know who is in their home.
Q: How do you build a successful customer base?
Ans: How I build a successful customer base is to get to know “the customer”. For example, if a young couple in their 20’s needs a new unit, I probably know that they will be needing financing and they also won’t care about the best of the best. They need a unit that is affordable. Another customer could be in their late 80’s, I doubt they will be able to use a Wi-FI smart thermostat, I would have to install a simple thermostat with up and down arrows. The younger couple 100% could be able to manage and operate a Wi-FI thermostat.
Q: What is your favorite aspect of being an entrepreneur?
Ans: Favorite thing about being an entrepreneur is the freedom. I have freedom to work as many or as little hours as I prefer.
Q: What has been your most satisfying moment in business?
Ans: I like seeing my customers satisfied with my work. Customers want defect-free products and services. Sometimes these machines do fail due to unpredictable circumstances but I will never leave a customer without air.
Q: What do you feel is the major difference between entrepreneurs and those who work for someone else?
Ans: One particular customer comes in mind as I read this question. We did some heaters for an older customer in Scottsdale and it was about a 5 day job. Every day when we showed up she had homemade bread made for us, feed us lunch daily as well. On the last day, she gave me a Christmas present. You don’t expect gifts from your customers when they are paying for your services.
Q: In one word, characterize your life as an entrepreneur.