To the Point Home Services Podcast

The Home Services Podcast That Gives Back

Episode 227: From Prison To Princess on a Path to $70M

June 25, 2024

Episode 227: From Prison To Princess on a Path to $70M

Published: June 25, 2024


Do we have a show for you! We welcome another incredible leader in the trades, Kathryn Howard! Kathryn is CEO of Lee’s Air, an HVAC, plumbing, electrical and roofing company serving Central & Northern California. Since joining Lee’s, Kathryn has helped grow the company on pace for 40% organic growth YOY to an astounding 70MM in revenue in 2024, alongside her brother and President of Lee’s Air, Tom.

From having a huge impact on the culture and morale of a company just recently in a backslide to propelling the team forward with her vision, Kathryn is a guest on To The Point you don’t want to miss!

Delivering Immediate Impact as CEO

Kathryn’s backstory is a wild ride! From an impoverished upbringing that led her down a dark path to entertaining HVAC before running her own successful marketing company, she’s seen ups and downs that certainly prepared her for becoming CEO of a 70MM business. While her brother and President of Lee’s, Tom Howard, brought her on as a CSR, it didn’t take her long to climb the ladder and start implementing big changes in the company.

After becoming CEO in November of 2023, Kathryn immediately set out to correct course in the business after a year of sliding profits and layoffs. Like most contractors, 2023 hit Lee’s hard with the lower lead volume and changing consumer behavior. But before Christmas, she was able to offer all the laid off employees their jobs back and had the culture of Lee’s changed for the better.

In this episode, we talk to Kathryn about…
  • Joining Lee’s as a CSR and opening up a new 24/7 call center
  • Managing high-performing salespeople
  • How she turned around the culture at Lee’s after layoffs and a difficult year
  • Her upbringing and mistakes in her younger years
  • Getting buy-in from the team around the importance of profit and revenue
  • Cutting material costs and increasing labor costs
  • Slicing HVAC installation time in half to .75 days
  • Working with family and how it impacts the business
  • How consumer behavior is changing and what contractors need to do about it
  • Being a woman leader in a male-dominated industry

The Times and Approach Changes, but Essential Service Doesn’t

Kathryn’s background, vision, and understanding of consumer behavior have her uniquely positioned to lead Lee’s into an even brighter future. She’s passionate about delivering exceptional service as well as growing the business, and her “join us or step out of our way” attitude is one that inspires confidence that 100MM and beyond is just a matter of time.

As Kathryn says, people need clean water and air conditioning – they always will. We have to do it better, and when you focus on delivering the best possible service – not the cheapest service – the revenue will follow.

Ratings & Reviews

Recent Podcasts

Episode 230: A New Era of Digital Marketing is Upon Us
Episode 229: Episode 229: How This Home Service Company Doubled Conversions with Automated Follow-ups