Technician Tips • Industry Insights • 42 minutes

Passion Got Us Here: How to Have a Competitive Mindset in HVAC and Plumbing

May 28, 2024

Episode Overview

Patrick Boldt and Craig Childress are champions of the industry.

Both are reigning title holders from the 2023 Elite Trades Competition Series, which annually celebrates the range of skills possessed by tradespeople throughout the country.

Boldt won the apprentice division of the HVAC competition; Childress took both the HVAC and plumbing titles in the professional division.

Along with televised fame and glory, each title comes with prizes ranging from $3,000 up to $40,000.

Each champ is humble about his journey.

“I have a lot to learn, and I’m probably always going to continue to learn,” Boldt says.

Childress says he recently had the opportunity to judge a high school trades competition. 

“It was awesome to see the growth that these students are coming up with and how knowledgeable they are as sophomores, juniors and seniors in high school,” he says.

Both Boldt and Childress are thankful that the ETCS showcases their profession and lets the public have a look at what the trades are all about. 

Competing for those titles is somewhat representative of doing the job on a daily basis, they say.

“I like solving problems,” Boldt says. “And this job is all about efficiency–you can’t waste your time–or your customer’s time.”

Boldt and Childress each found the competition gratifying–from the five-minute quiz to start the qualification process to the experience of performing trade skills in front of cameras.

Should everybody consider trying out for the ETCS?

“You can’t win if you don’t try,” Boldt says.

Patrick Boldt and Craig Childress recently joined ServiceTitan’s Jackie Aubel on the “Toolbox for the Trades” podcast, which included the ETCS champs’ thoughts on:

  • [5:52]: The benefits of vocational high school

  • [10:52] Why veterans make great tradespeople

  • [21:56]: How technicians should be qualified, trained, and treated

  • [24:53]: What people should know about the work technicians do

  • [33:27]: What skills come in handy during the competition

To hear more stories from the trades, subscribe to “Toolbox for the Trades” on Apple Podcasts, Spotify, Google, or anywhere you get podcasts.

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About the Show

Toolbox for the Trades is a podcast where top service professionals share the tips, tricks, and tactics they use to succeed in their industry. Hosted by Jackie Aubel, this podcast is brought to you by ServiceTitan—the leading home and commercial field service software.

Episodes will feature stories and strategies to help contractors grow and scale their service business.

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