How To Lead People With More Experience Than You w/ Trey McWilliams

“I entered a business that was fragmented, probably on the vision of what the company should look like. Everybody had their own vision, or lack of, and we’re just kind of going through the motions. From a leadership and ownership standpoint, all the burden fell on the ownership’s shoulders and no one else carried the load.”

— Trey McWilliams

Some people build successful businesses towards the goal of eventually selling their company and cashing in on their efforts. Meanwhile, others pass down their life’s work to their children in hopes that they could continue to make their vision work and grow to different heights. 


Some people assume that inheriting a business is easier than starting from scratch. After all, you’d be inheriting an established system. What many people don’t see is that you also inherit all of the problems from the previous generation that went unsolved. 


In this episode of the Service Business Mastery podcast, we talk to Trey McWilliams, CEO of McWilliams Group, a third-generation business owner. At age 22, he took over McWilliams and Son Heating, Cooling, and Plumbing, a family business that was led by his father and founded by his grandfather before him. As a young and green leader, he knew he had big shoes to fill. But also knew that he had a vision for the business that only he could bring to fruition.


Despite being the son of the owner, Trey knew he had to earn the trust and respect of their employees, each of whom were seasoned tradesmen and had forgotten more things about HVAC than he could ever hope to learn. And this he did by showing up at their workspace and soiling his hands just like the rest of them. But besides being a good people person, Trey also demonstrated his ability to look ahead and exercise his vision of building a scalable culture that made their family business not just survive, but thrive for another generation to come. 


In this episode, we discuss:

  • The challenges of running an established family business

  • How to earn the trust of your employees as a 3rd generation owner

  • Why culture is critical to creating a scalable business

  • How to make your employees feel that they’re part of a shared vision


Check out these resources we mentioned during the podcast:

  • Visit and use code SBM for a free 2-week trial, 1:1 training and account setup, and 50% off your first two months!


Meet the Guest:

Trey McWilliams is the CEO of the McWilliams Group. He is a third-generation business owner who despite his young age, managed to earn the respect of hardened tradespeople who started working with his father and grandfather before him. His tenacity and willingness to get his hands dirty with his employees allowed him to turn their business around and grow to bigger heights. 

Connect with Trey on LinkedIn:

Connect with McWilliams and Son on LinkedIn:

Connect with LemonSeed Media on LinkedIn:

Meet the Hosts:

Tersh Blissett

Tersh Blissett is a serial entrepreneur who has created and scaled multiple profitable home service businesses in his small-town market. He’s dedicated to giving back to the industry that has provided so much for him and his family. Connect with him on LinkedIn.

Joshua Crouch

Joshua Crouch has been in the home services industry, specifically HVAC, for 8+ years as an Operations Manager, Branch Manager, Territory Sales Manager, and Director of Marketing. He’s also the Founder of Relentless Digital, where the focus is dominating your local market online. Connect with him on LinkedIn.

Like this article?

Share on Facebook
Share on Twitter
Share on Linkdin
Share on Pinterest

Listen to these platforms