How I Got Started in the Family Business

As you may well know, my name is Daniel Sinclair and I have been with Sinclair Heating Cooling and Plumbing for as long as I can remember. I love this company and everything that it stands for and I wanted to tell you my story. Well…, and maybe brag on my parents for a minute (HA HA.)

Back in 1979 my mom and dad started Sinclair Heating and Air Conditioning out of their home. My dad (Tom Sinclair) ran all of the service calls and my mom (Beth Sinclair) answered the phone and dispatched. Eventually my parents were getting so busy that my dad had to hire his first employee after only 3 years in business. This eventually grew into 40 to 50 employees.

When I turned 11, I remember watching TV one afternoon and my dad walked in and said “Son, get your work clothes on, I need your help.” So, every summer when I was out of school I would go help my dad run service calls. I liked it because he would let me drive, until my mom caught us one day:-( (Yes I started driving when I was 11, what’s the big deal?) I learned so much during this time and it has helped me become the man I am today. I learned how to have conversations with customers, the proper names for tools, how to be a man, and how to be a father. These are very important things in a young mans life.

When I was in high school I changed the way I felt about the business. I saw how hard my parents were working and I said to myself, “I will never work that hard.” I wanted to do anything but work on air conditioners. I know that I probably hurt my parents and made them feel insecure about continuing on with the business, but I couldn’t help the way I felt. Three jobs later I realized that working for my parents might not be so bad, but I didn’t admit that to myself until later.

After college and years of working in the field,my parents decided it was time for me to learn more about the administration side of the business. So I had to learn every persons job in the office. For example: Doing payroll, billing, and answering the phone. Basically what a small business owner does. This was a true test for me to see if I really wanted this business in the future or not.

So after learning a little of everything, I came to the realization that taking over this business some day would not be so bad after all. Being a small business owner has its ups and downs but the benefits far out-weigh the bad. I now have so much more respect for my parents and the business that they have built literally with their blood, sweet, and tears. To have the opportunity to some day run this business is a huge undertaking but knowing the reputation that they have built over 30 years will make my job much easier.

Today the company has 45 employees and has added a plumbing division as well! Residential service is still the main focus but residential plumbing, commercial plumbing, residential hvac replacements, and new residential installs are large parts of the company too. I am Dad’s right hand man in the office and love every minute of it. One day I hope I can fill the shoes of my parents and run the business with class and integrity, the way they have for years.

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