An interview with Brian Quint of Aqua Quip

Success is about more than just selling more fireplaces, spas and barbecues.”  - Brian Quint

aquaquip.jpgAfter accepting our invitation to be a panelist for our event, I sat down with Brian Quint for a short interview.  The next Executive Outlier event is January 26, 2017.  We will be talking about “Why business will survive, thrive and fail over the next four years.”  Brian is the president of Aqua Quip and will be one of our panelists at this event.  

Brian was introduced to me by Donna Himpler of Columbia Bank in Bellevue.  Brian and I met for the first time on the phone and began discussing the Executive Outlier program and the events Business Cloud Services is promoting this year.  We want people like Brian to share their insights, wisdom and business experience with a local audience of business owners.  In this blog I’d like to share some insights I gained in meeting Brian and let you think about his perspective before hearing him on the 26th.  I’ve also included his bio here Brian Quin on our website.

In our conversation I asked Brian about his thoughts on what businesses will need to do to thrive in the next four years?  I mentioned that most business management consultants say the reasons why companies fail is because they are underfunded or poorly managed.  I felt that this is like saying the patient died, because his heart stopped beating.  It was true, but didn’t really answer the underlying reason “Why they failed.”

I wanted to share some of the insights and impressions from our conversation:

  • Companies Fail when they stop looking for competitive advantage.

Brian’s comments included:

“… dig deep into your niche, then differentiate yourself with your target customers.”

“… engage dynamically with changing demographics”

“… Digital marketing.”  In other words, develop ways to engage with customers online in ways that connect best with your target customer.

  • A component of failure focusing on the people you hire,

Brian’s comments included:

It’s very important to “… attract and the retain good people”

Develop a strong culture,

  • A major component is the management process

Brian’s comments included:

“…C-level executives must understand cash flow.”

“… C-level executives must be dialed into risk.” Understanding there is a balancing act between business income and risk.  Too little risk or too much risk, both have consequences. 

“… Poor culture is a component of bad management” Management must create a culture that supports the values of the company and attracts people with a culture that is alignment that culture. 

Brian has a natural understanding and a belief in leadership excellence.  I find the top executives I speak with seem to be lifelong students of leadership.  Brian is a strong believer in developing leadership in the Aqua Quip organization.  As we discussed management, his comments are consistent with other executives who are experts in leadership principles.

During our conversation, it was difficult to narrow down one reason Brian thinks that will cause a business to fail.  He has developed a plethora of skills since 1979.  If I were to summarize Brian Quint, it would be the pursuit of competency in communication, leadership and understanding the needs of your business, employees and customers. 

I thoroughly enjoyed meeting with Brian and will take what I learned in our short conversation back to my business.  If you can attend our event on “Why businesses will Thrive, Survive or fail in the next four years” I think you’ll be able to take away some insights of your own as well.

About Brian Quint:

BrianQuint30-368029-edited.jpgBrian Quint is President of Aqua Quip. Aqua Quip is a 58 year old -Seattle based – family owned company with 9 retail stores in the Puget Sound area and around 80 employees.

Aqua Quip sells swimming pools and hot tubs, barbeque grills, wood & gas fireplace inserts and stoves as well as products used by swimming pool and hot tub owners…such as chemicals, toys, cleaning products and everything else under the sun (as long as the sun comes out…)

Aqua Quip also has a complete service, construction and electrical department.

Brian was born and raised in the Seattle area. Graduated from Sammamish H S in Bellevue and went on to WSU for his Bachelor’s degree in Business Administration.

After College, Brian went to work for First National Bank of Oregon – doing consumer, business and agricultural lending.

Brian joined his father at Aqua Quip in 1979, and has spent the balance of his career growing the family business.

In addition to working at Aqua Quip- Brian has been involved in several industry and community activities. Such as-

Past President of the Seattle Executives Association (a 100 year old Networking group)

Former Chairman of the Board of the Association of Pool & Spa Professionals

And currently is a board member for:

  • Kline Galland Home (Seattle based home for the Elderly) – current Chairman of Board
  • Bank of Washington, Lynnwood Washington

Brian lives in Bellevue with his wife Nancy of  35 years and has two grown daughters- one representing the 4th generation to work at Aqua Quip and a one year old Grandson who is hoped to be the 5th generation of the family working in the business.

When Brian is not working, volunteering his time or spending time with his family – he enjoys skiing, golfing, cycling, scuba diving, traveling the world and enjoying the outdoors (Brian summited Mt. Rainier in 2010). 

Topics: Interview Business Success Business Failure Leadership Culture