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Great Leadership Takes Hard Work...and Pays Off Being a great leader doesn't come naturally to many - however, as a business owner you are thrown into a leadership role. Hear from Josh Campbell, owner of Rescue Air Heating & Cooling in Richardson, TX, about what it takes to succeed.

By Emily Washcovick

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

Courtesy of Rescue Air Heating and Cooling

Behind the Review host and Yelp's Small Business Expert, Emily Washcovick, shares a look at this week's episode of the podcast.

When you're in the business of a home service like heating and cooling, emergencies are a part of daily life. And not so infrequently, they happen in the middle of the night. Dealing with these issues in a way that leaves the customer happy isn't as easy as it seems, but this week's business owner, Josh Campbellof Rescue Air Heating and Cooling in Richardson, Texas, is a true pro at navigating these challenges.

To get a firsthand look at why Rescue Air Heating and Cooling is so successful, I talked with Yelp reviewer Jennifer W. after she had an AC emergency that had her chatting with Josh for over an hour in the middle of the night. Her experience with Josh and his team highlights exactly why you can't lose with honesty, top-down leadership, and quality customer service.

We've talked with many business owners about the importance of quality customer service, but something we touched on with Josh, that we haven't yet explored, is the importance of working on yourself. As a leader, Josh firmly believes in a top-down operational model. He leads by example in more ways than one. He's an honest business owner, an open communicator, hard worker, and, arguably most notably, never stops learning. He knows that he doesn't know all there is to know and is always looking for new ways to improve and get better - as a business owner and as a boss.

Great leadership takes hard work. It takes time and isn't a skill that naturally comes with being a business owner - it needs to be worked on separately. When you commit to being the best boss you can be, it shows and ripples throughout the company. When you operate that way, you end up with Yelp reviews like Jennifer's that mention four different employees by name, who all made a positive impact. In Josh's words, "Working on myself has probably been the most powerful thing I've done since leaving my last company. Understanding that I've gotta be working on developing and growing for the rest of my life. I can't expect people in my business to develop themselves if I'm not leading by example."

Outside of the importance of great leadership, other takeaways from this week's episode include:

  • Empathize with your customer. Air Conditioners are big purchases, making the purchase decision tough and the unforeseen issues stressful. Empathize with what your customer is going through, and use that as your guiding light when communicating.
  • Find talented people with the right attitude. We hear this time and time again, but it's never any less true. Hiring the right people who have a good work ethic and a positive attitude will help you maintain a business with a great reputation for customer service.
  • Make your customers feel comfortable. When your business involves going in and out of someone else's home, it's essential that your customer feel comfortable. Josh and his team use a service that communicates who the customer can expect, and when the team shows up, they are respectful and conscientious. Once again, it may seem like a given, but it's not always. They go the extra mile by wearing booties and, in COVID times, are incredibly conscious of physical distancing and mask wearing.
  • Communicate, communicate, communicate. This spans so many parts of the business, whether it's late night calls with the customer or onsite walking them through every step you're taking, ensuring they approve every cost before the work is done. With upfront, constant, and thoughtful communication, you will find success.

Listen to the episode below to hear directly from Josh and Jennifer, and subscribe to Behind the Review for more from new business owners and reviewers every Thursday.

Emily Washcovick

Small Business Expert at Yelp

As Yelp’s Small Business Expert, Emily is meticulously focused on helping local business owners succeed and grow. Her expertise lies in customer engagement, reputation management, and all things digital marketing. Through speaking engagements and thought leadership, Emily shares industry insights that entrepreneurs in any business category can leverage for the growth and well-being of their businesses. She is also the host of Behind the Review, a podcast from Yelp and Entrepreneur Media, where each episode features conversations with a business owner and a reviewer about the story and lessons behind their interactions.

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