Charles has one goal in this life, at least as far as this podcast shows -- keeping families safe and dry. In this podcast, Charles talks about that in a literal sense (he's a vivid, visceral storyteller -- and that will be obvious), but we also explore that concept as it extends to the way you lead and treat your people.
Charles is an expert at the human side and the storytelling side -- and so we also talk about best practices for telling your own story -- something I think we all can learn a thing or two about.
Take a closer look at Charles: https://www.linkedin.com/in/charles-antis-a3b6637/
Read more about Antis Roofing's mission: https://www.antisroofing.com/
Enjoy! Full transcript below. And you'll definitely want to watch the conversation unfold:
FOLLOW AUTHENTIC AVENUE, AND ADAM, ON SOCIAL MEDIA:
LinkedIn (Authentic Avenue): https://www.linkedin.com/company/68049428/
LinkedIn (Adam Conner): https://www.linkedin.com/in/adamjconner/
Email Adam at firstname.lastname@example.org
Learn more at https://authenticavenuemedia.com/.
TRANSCRIPT BELOW (powered by Descript; accuracy not guaranteed):
Adam Conner: Charles. I was looking forward to this one and it's because it's because. Number one, I know this is going to be an incredibly high energy conversation and two, because the first time that we met listeners, we do a little bit of prep. Uh, we talked about a hell of a lot of things, and I was kinda jazzed that very little of it was like directly tied to like the actual business that you're in.
But it's the story around it that you tell that I think is incredible. Um, for the listeners, the viewers, anybody consuming. Though, can we just level set to start and say, okay, let's talk about the business for like a minute. Like, what are you, what, what, what are you do? But then we can see it behind you, keeping families safe and dry.
Let's talk more about that experience and what it holistically means, because I'm sure it's more than just a roof, but can we start there?
Charles Antis: Yeah. Yes, we can start with what I do. I am the founder and CEO here at Antis Roofing in Irvine, California, and we service exclusively homeowners associations from San Diego up to Malibu along the coast, and we keep them safe and dry.
You see that everywhere you hear it in our company, in all of our actions and the way we talk, we enthusiastically exist to keep families safe and dry. That's what roofing is about. It's that basic shelter that basic needs. We provide it. And when you start to hold it that way, you see yourselves higher, you see the impact of all of your actions, of every nail that goes in of potentially having meaning that can last.
And I think that's a powerful metaphor that has carried on once we started to pause and realize the truth of our trade. You,
Adam Conner: uh, you're exuberant, this energy is, is, is palpable. And I, and I know that, uh, that, that, you know that well, and that you've, you've kind of trained for it, but I'll ask about that in a second, because, um, this whole world that you've built quite literally over people's heads, um, has started with you.
You've said a couple of things. And so I just want to run through a couple of quotes, cause I imagine we'll reflect. The first thing that came to my mind when we had our first discussion was that you talked at length and very colorfully about the power of maybe God, if I get even I could probably call this whole show.
What happens when you invest in the power of maybe the quote that I remember you saying was that if I say maybe to something, it always happens, what a, what a positive way to look at. Can you talk a little bit about where that started? Was it when you thought of this business? Is it something before that?
How long has that power of maybe powered you?
Charles Antis: Uh, thanks for asking that, Adam, I'll try to go a little deep on that. I mean, what is it? I mean, I grew up in a simple town in Oregon, Myrtle Creek, Oregon population, 3000, everybody in that town that I knew every man that I knew either worked in the forest or in the lumberman.
And, and it was this blue color, but proud environment where everybody's work was at risk of even death. And, and it was a. Place to grow up in. And yet there was something that I saw in someone else, and I'll never forget when I was six years old at the wooden nickel day parade. It's the biggest deal in town.
And I'm down there at the end of the parade. After the floats go by the log trucks go by then there's this guy. And he's not like every other man that I remember this man, his name, his name was John shirt cliff. And he owned the local oil refinery. Looking back. He must have had a little more, uh, Capability to help, but he stood at the end of that parade every year, handing out dimes.
He, he, he, he didn't just hand out a dime, but I remember he did something that these other busy, hardworking men didn't, weren't able to do. He had capacity in him and he, he paused and he looked at me as if he grabbed me by the shoulders and noticed. And he handed me a dime, which in 1968 could buy two candy bars.
And I think that that was a really powerful thing that I didn't really understand, but I didn't even know what I was thinking, but looking back, I wanted to be John shirt cliff, and I think there's something right there. There's, there's wanting, seeing that. Was being fulfilled. I mean, I got a good vibration from him.
I want to feel like him. I don't want to feel like I'm risking my life all the time. At least for no reason, this guy was doing something and sharing. And I, I looking back now, I wanted to be him. And how that showed up is when I ended up in California, I ended up not, I ended up looking for work and I think it's worth it to tell you the reason I ended up looking for work as I was recruited, when I was.
21 to come to California and knock on doors and sell insulation. And I was doing that in the valley, in the San Fernando valley. And I knocked on a door and I, and I met a family and they were. I mean, they couldn't hear, um, the, the parents couldn't hear him. And I, and I, I created a bond with that family that day, you know, like you do in sales, you want to love those, you sell to, and, and, and I love this family and I sold them and I made like a thousand dollars on it.
The next day I went to get the deposit check. And as I walked up on the doorstep, I to knock on the door, um, nobody answered and I thought, well, they didn't hear me. They're deaf. And I knocked again. And this time the father saw me through the window. And he still didn't come. And I didn't understand. And suddenly I felt footsteps and I turned and I saw a woman.
I didn't recognize it was the neighbor. And she was pointing at me, yelling at me, asking me to leave. And they said, but why? And she said, because. Lied to my neighbors. You promise them savings on their electricity. That is impossible. And you're a crook leave. And I was humiliated and I was initially angry at this woman.
And then suddenly it hit me, like I looked at the contract and I looked at her and what she was saying, I realized that it was true. And I was, I was selling something that wasn't genuine. I was, I wasn't going to help this family. I was actually gonna hurt that family. And I was. Isolated by that instance, that that day I paused, I pondered and I quit my job and I, there I was 21 years old without work, but determined to find work that I would provide value.
And the only thing that I could see myself in at the time was in that little. And so I looked for a labor job and the only job that I could see was roofing. I had no experience, but that's how I entered the roofing market. And that's where we started. I forgot your question, Adam. I'm on. So Dino,
Adam Conner: I want to just, it's about the power of maybe by the way, do you still talk to them?
Have you ever, have you ever reconnected
Charles Antis: with that family? Well, this is, this is what happened in that capacity as when, when I am sorry. Yes. The family that I donated the. Is that what you're referring to? I'm referring to this deaf family. I'm sorry, the deaf family. I'm sorry. The deaf family. No, I, I, I have never heard from them, but I'm glad you asked that because for a long time in my heart, I was hurt and I was angry at the neighbor.
I didn't realize I was until I realized. When I pondered and looking back that that neighbor was the hero to that family, you know? So in my mind, yes, I want someday for, to get a call and it be from. Older woman who lives in Arlita in the San Fernando valley. And she's going to say, Hey, I remember you.
You're the guy that I kicked off the porch. Thank you for listening to me. And thank you for building a company. That's actually doing a service to people in the community. I think that no, I've never heard from that family. I wouldn't know where to look, but I would love to hear from them today. And I would love to show them how everything matters at Antis.
But, but in that capacity of getting the power of maybe really happened and I have to build up to the, you know, I was desperate when I started my company. I, I knew how to solve leaks, but I didn't really know how to do much. I'd I got a job at a roofing company. There wasn't enough work after awhile. And so I, I could solve leaks.
So I said, give me the leak that no one else could solve and let me fix it for free. And then I got a call one day from a woman and I was excited cause she had leaks in every room. And so I'm, I'm driving to this home the next day. I just started my company. I'm desperate for work. And in fact, I'm so desperate that.
Weather stripping on the home office, which was a bedroom. I converted to an office. So no one would hear my daughter, but I get this call from a woman I'm going out there the next day. But I'm noticing as I'm getting closer to her house, that the homes are getting more disheveled. I see graffiti and suddenly I get this feeling in my gut like, oh no, this is not a good job for me, but I continued until finally I turned on the street where the home would be.
And I just saw like this dead grass in this. Ah, small box home set back, and I'm hoping it's not it. As I go up to knock, there was like a one 40 and a half. So I'm thinking maybe there's another adjacent property, but I knock on the door and three things happen. This woman answers the door with this tired look before I could say anything.
I'm hit with the smell of mildew. That's so foul. It nearly knocks me down and now I'm just fight or flight. I need to leave it as I'm starting to leave wondering, and I'm going to say, I still haven't said anything. I feel a tug at my finger and I looked down. And as I looked down, there's a little six year old blonde girl with the biggest smile who doesn't, she's not in the same place as her mom and me.
She is like, I've got a visitor and she's pulling me in her house and I had no choice, but to follow her through this crowded living room, into this almost an unsafe, uh, sized hallway. And then she turns into this room and I know it was her room because she looks up and points to. Uh, my little pony poster on the wall, but at that exact moment, I saw at her feet, the mattress, she slept on with mold and moldy bedding.
And then I was stuck. I was really stuck because. I had a mortgage payment to make I needed to get out of there, but I, but I didn't, I couldn't move because this little girl, she was so nice and smiling, but I couldn't move. And then suddenly after low, it felt like five minutes was probably 30 seconds. The mom with that same tired expression walks back in and something happened where out of my Boyce, out of my, out of my mouth, the words came, I'm going to take care of your roof.
I'm going to keep you safe and dry. And I don't ever recall saying that before, but there was that moment. And I, I want to pause on that moment. There's the, maybe there was, it was an impossibility, by the way. I didn't have the resources. But who was more prepared than me at that moment, being the very best at solving leaks to help that family.
And so I was stuck when the white, when the, when the woman walked back in, I just, it, there was that thing I couldn't say no. And it was really, I wasn't saying yes, but, but something in the moment said, maybe I can help. And I did. And I remember after I said it out of my thought, I'd told a lie because I didn't know if I could ensure enough.
I walked up on that roof. And it was shot. There was, there was no way I could just do a leak. It needed a whole new roof and I had to go out and get volunteers. And, but I did. And that weekend we showed up in six volunteers gave that woman and her six children. A safe, dry rub. I mean, it wasn't my best truth looking back, but it was dripping goop on the outside, but it was dry on the inside and the family stayed in that home.
And there's that moment that has repeated itself over and over at Antis ripping. Every time we meet a family that has a leaky roof and they don't have the money to pay, there's this thing that happens this capacity, that grows. If we don't say no. Now I've said no to things in the past. And that is a final answer.
It's always correct. But something magic happens in that doctor on an airplane moment. Let me explain. It's really important that, that you all hear this because you all have a moment just like this, and that's, if you're a doctor on an airplane and you hear that pilot over the Intercom, say, excuse me, there's a medical emergency.
You and I know that that doctor, we know that he, or she's gonna raise his or her hand and say, yes, I can help him that emergent. And we also believe that the doctor's not going to find out, get a card and send a bill. And, and I believe the impact of that moment is huge. And I want to freeze on that and say, we all have that maybe moment where we can say yes, like a doctor on the airplane.
And that doctor on the airplane impacts that passenger by saving their life, it impacts the, all the others that see that story. But look at what my moment had 32 years ago inside that woman's house near the LA. With her six children. Those kids have told that story over and over again, all the six volunteers.
Do you know what happens every time I run into them and I haven't for 10 years, but I did up until 10 years ago, sometimes the siblings, sometimes the volunteers, it was a high five, a bro hug a hug for people that don't have. And that's what culture feels like today. And Antis ripping, because we get to do that with big capacity in big ways in big gives locally and across the country.
And so it's that power of maybe is a really important pause. And I appreciate that you let us dive into it.
Adam Conner: Yeah.
It's one of the most colorful stories I've ever heard on this show. I've been in hundreds of times, I've talked to brands that fortune 100 hundreds of billions of dollars. And that is probably that's prob that's probably one of the most powerful stories that, that I have heard. And it's brings up two questions to me.
I'll ask the story-based one second. You obviously the obvious over-index on, on, on investment. However that word is defined in. Whether that be that first family that you gave that roof to, whether it be the people that you employ now, whether it be, um, the ways in which you give back,
it sounds like a weird question. W w why don't you think others invest in people the way that you so obviously, and a few simply do. I mean, because this is it's, it's contagious, like. Uh, I don't know anything about roofing. My, my, my uncle in my family, most successful business person that I have in my family is a roofer himself and got his own roofing company.
And I don't know if he has a story like that. And I'm just curious, like, it's so contagious. How, how did you get to this point? Because when I think of roofer in my head, stereotypically, typically I don't have somebody who tells stories like this, who is so, um, like you, how did you have you,
Charles Antis: have you done.
Well, first of all, that the capacity issue, why others don't do it so much as far as, as to the level that we do it. And I think that it starts with the power of maybe again, if you're, it's the opposite of that, when you feel like there's not enough. And oftentimes when you start a business, when you start.
Realizing there's all these regulations and there's all these additional costs. In fact, you, that never ends. It's easy to feel like there's not enough. And so there's a mind shift that has to occur. It's like we all have to awaken a little bit from the way our parents raised us and see the world a little bit differently, especially in the way that people need to be seen today.
And for me, uh, it's. It happened, son, some beautiful ways in the stories, like I told you. And it happened also sometimes with a gun to my head. Sometimes it felt like. Had to do stuff that we didn't necessarily want to do, but it was really in changing the way that we held it, that that made all the difference.
I even in the way that we serve the client. I remember I just started telling, I haven't told this story. I told, I tried to tell it yesterday, but my storytelling coach that we'll probably talk about later was asking me some really great questions and in some wise, and how it started and, you know, not only is there a good.
And the way that we hold the community and the way that we hold our employees, there's a give to the client. It's a deep intent. And the story that I haven't told is, is what I used to do. And I didn't tell this because it was too. I feeling emotional, but when you hear it, I don't know if you're going to get it.
You might, but I'm saying, I don't know if it's, if, if people get it, but it's like, I was so desperate for work. I needed every job. I had very few calls in my clients were homeowners associations, like condos, and they would often call and there'd be 300 units and they had 50 leaks and they had no money and they had to solve those leaks.
And here I was, I had. I, I may not at that time even been able to sell them a rerun, but I had the ability to solve those leaks and, and I, and, and I, I was desperate to be their hero. And I remember driving out to the community. There was this ritual that I sorta had that I would, I, I I've never talked about, but I would drive to the condo.
I would go near the area where the leak was. I would hopefully not be seen and be by myself, I'd take a ladder, I'd climb up on the roof. And I would go to an area near where the leak was in the say it's leaking around a chimney and I would lay down, put my back on the roof in a safe area. And then I would lay my head upon the tiles.
And then I would with big design. Want to solve that leak I'd want to solve the problem in a way that they could get all the usable life out of the roof. And, and I would, I, as I laid down there, imagining that most of the roof was in good areas, just looking at the chimneys or events or whatever, I would imagine what if I could design the plan that would keep this community safe and they could get all the usable life out of the roof.
And then I would go into this thought, and this is the part that's I think maybe a little deep, but it really worked. I would imagine. I am water. It's really was. I would imagine that I'm a bead of water and I'm insuring where it looks to be this whole and how I would travel down the paper, the flashing drip upon the Joyce, the plates drip upon and find its way down.
Cause water can travel 50 feet. I, I, I can't, I never told that. Cause it sounds like I'm defining water. Like I'm a guy that's going to sell you that I can go find water in a desert and sell you a well, but I can tell you that's exactly what occurred. And then what we did is we have so many stories of communities that would do a maintenance for $50,000 in spread instead of spending 3 million on our roof.
And we would get them 10 more years out of their roof before they needed to reroof. And so there was a deep. Desire to serve. The consumer, in every instance, it felt like there wasn't enough. There's not enough money that I can solve all your leaks for $50,000 and a $3 million reroof. And yet when you think maybe there's capacity, there's, it shows up, it shows up in performance.
It shows up today. It shows up in performance and where we have an expression and Antis that every nail matters. And because there's 200,000 parts on the average roof we install. And if you have purpose in your company, Then it shows up in your employees and there's nothing similar about two side by side installed by two different companies, nothing similar.
Every nail goes indifferently in Antis. We believe if we set up purpose right in our company, every nail can go in, like it matters. And that's kind of where we've ended up by always looking at things purposely. I don't think I answered your question, Adam. No, I will.
Adam Conner: You know what the great part about this.
I was asking about investing in people, which obviously you do, you just told me about how you, how you seek to serve is that I get, I get so taken with these stories that I it's magnetic. Like I sure have some questions and bullet points of me as I'm sitting here in the interviewer chair being like, wow, how do I, how do I help the best answer story get told?
And I'm looking at it. I don't need to ask these questions. It's not because I haven't done the prep is because. Jumps off of the page. It flies out of the microphone. I know, I know that. I know that that's why nobody comes out of the room with a, with a natural ability to do that. But you have invested in people and invested in yourself clearly in this way, that desire to serve it, you know, even in the ways in which you said, like the very tactile ways laying on that roof, I didn't know, water traveled 50 feet, by the way.
Uh, Uh, listeners, viewers, you know, that I have pretty much always have something intelligent or eloquent to say, and I'm struggling to do so at the moment, but that's okay because this is about telling Charles his story here. And I know that people have helped you tell your story, including that coach.
And I was about to cut you off there. I want to ask what the coach is like I've never heard of. I mean, when I hear a storytelling coach, I hear like media training and all the CMOs that I talked to, like, get that a lots of very high, uh, It's a very important part of their life, but what were you going to say there?
Charles Antis: I think I cut you off. No, I think we're on the same topic and storytelling coach. I mean, I think that, well, I do invest in my employees, anything they want, that's really how it's the conversation starts. Uh, but I. Selfishly. I invest in myself and, and I love assessments and take assessments. People. They let you see things differently.
That's the only way you can grow and shift mindsets to keep up with the shifting in the world. And so whether it's disc or emotional intelligence, well, about six years ago, I really was going for a deep dive and I went to Seattle to the imperative purpose lab, Erin, her. Big project. One of the biggest purpose projects is the biggest purpose project in the history of the world.
And I spent four days there and it was, it was painful at time, you know, exposing yourself in front of strangers. And there were some big players there and there was a particular pod that I was working with and it was the CEO from carnival, one of the carnivals fleet, cruise lines, Tara and Tara. I don't remember her last name, but Tara.
Ah, Tara and I had a discovery, uh, and another couple people in there. And she said, as I was being hard on myself, that I don't manage people well, and that I don't tutor people. One on unwell. She really, with the real, with this program said, Charles, that's not who you are. You are an ambassador. You are, you live to ignite passion and others for social change.
You are awakened when you can awaken others to see their superpower. And suddenly I put that on and I realized, oh my God, I've been performing in the wrong areas. Let me do this and attract the talent. And so I started investing in myself and there's when I told Tara Tara, I'm getting a lot of speaking engagements now, and I'm not the best speaker I just run on and on and on.
And she said, I S I said, Tara, I need a speaking coach. He goes, no, Charles, you don't need a speaking coach. You need a storytelling. And I'm like you, I didn't, to me, I didn't picture what you picture. I pictured like an old 80 year old mark Twain looking gold miner. I don't know. I did. I just,
instead I meet this silicone valley guy named Jay golden. Who's just a really deep thinker. And he thinks that he tells me things like stop wasting people's time dropping names and with bullshit and with. They can't hear it instead. He didn't talk like that. I made that crude don't waste. People's time dropping names.
Don't waste people times with antidotes. That don't mean anything, but give them a real story of change. And he taught me that stories are beautiful. Living things that if we go back and look at them from different angles, almost like a drone in the room that we can have self discoveries and company discoveries.
And he taught me how to tell a story. And there is a way to tell a story. And I've learned that my people inside my company, that I thought they heard me, but they can only hear one thing kind of, but now I can move. In the most important area by telling a story, I do it every day inside and outside the company.
And there was a formula to the story. And the story is you have to make the list. Make their body react where there's a little pain, there's peril in the story. So their body has to excrete cortisol that uncomfortable, but you can't leave them there for very long, or they will shut you out not only today, but forever.
It's a, it's a, it's a survival technique of the subconscious brain of the reptilian brain. But after you give, given that cortisol, you give them the antidote to that kryptonite. You give them the oxytocin by telling them. That we gave them a roof. When I give you the moldy mattress, scientifically your brain experiences.
Cause you've smelled mold before you are in the room with me. Once I was told this by Jay golden, the next time I told that same story, there were 600 people in the room and you could've heard a pin drop. And I looked in the room and he was right. Everybody's smelled the mode. I mold. I watched them react.
If you want to be heard and you want to move the dial. And when you met purpose with storytelling, when you really tell the right stories, and there's a lot of great storytellers that tell the wrong stories, the wrong story is, is like I D I'm gonna tell you really quick. I had candidates in the. Three weeks ago from JFS ripping academy.
These were all men who had had difficult past and there were suddenly here and I told them some great stories, but I also, that day started telling him about some of the Ronald McDonald house Gibbs across the nation. And, you know, and not saying it was the wrong story, but it wasn't the story for them right now.
The story for them right now is you're in the trade where you get to provide. Basic shelter. Your hands are the hands that are going to keep families safe and dry. You know, it's, it's my point is you got to tell the right story to the right crowd at the right time. And I'm the first thing I asked you, Adam, is who's your audience.
I got to know where you're at. And then if I know where you're at. And just accept it without judgment. And then I know where I'm at and what's exciting me right now. And what's exciting me right now is the power of maybe, and you know that, and so we're moving it. And then, and so if I'm talking about what I'm excited about, And I know where you're at, then we can move together.
So every time I get into a conversation, I never tell the story the same way I get excited when someone like you gets excited and ask the question differently, you know, and by the way, the power of maybe might be the name of the book that I'm writing with Jay golden. But, but right now today, the. And the reason I got emotional, when I, when I was telling the story about me laying on the roof with my head and imagining that I am water right now, the name of that book for me today is I am water because I think we're all water.
In fact, I want to, I just want to say this and you tell me if this has any, cause you know how we get excited. Some days I'm seeing it right now. And, and so, you know why I'm water because water always finds the weakness. It always finds the vulnerable in a failing. And that's where that I love that I am water because that's what I was to solve those leaks.
So back long ago, that's what I was to go solve the leak on that family. And that's what we do in community. That's why we've had in this right here in this, on the other side of that wall, we've had 50 blood drives in the last 18 months. We've taken on almost 4,000 life-saving units of blood. Why? Because we could, because there was a blood shortage.
Why? Because I am water. Why do we delay? Boxes of food with second harvest as part of the second harvest truck brigade, because they couldn't fit. Every Tuesday at two last year. So we sent a fleet every Tuesday at two, so we could deliver boxes. And I got to tell you when I went to deliver food, I just got to tell you a quick story.
This is why we do this. We get to have these experiences. I didn't want to deliver. But when after the pandemic last year, a lot of our giving, which is how we're defined our habitat. We've given every habitat roof and locally for the last 11 years, we do hit meals, a love and provide the roofing and Ronald McDonald house.
But when everything's shut down, we didn't, we lost part of our identity. And then Susan Degrassi, one of my VPs said, Charles, we have food insecurity. Now we always heard about food insecurity, but I didn't feel. And now all of a sudden they pause and go, oh my God, they're seniors. There's children in our community that don't have enough food.
And so I went to deliver my first box of food, even though I wasn't comfortable. And I delivered a box of food to the second story of the condo and I knocked on the door and a woman answered and she asked me to bring it in and we weren't supposed to come in at that time, but I knew I needed to. And as I walked in out of the corner of my eye, I see.
A woman and an old, old, thin night gown who's coming toward me. And it kind of intimidated me. And she was saying something as you got closer, she was saying, bless you, bless you, bless you. And it was honestly, it was feeling so uncomfortable and I was, I was putting the box of food down to leave as quickly as I could, but as I put the box of food down and I paused and turned.
All of a sudden, I just felt whoa, like awakened in the moment. Like instead of it being like hit with a dart, I was hit with this blessing. Like she was blessed. She was saying, bless you, bless you, bless you. And I felt blessed. I didn't know what blessed was until that moment. And I felt so good and I remembered what we're supposed to do, how we're supposed to help.
And then that woman said, wait a minute. And she took off down the hall and I, I thought she was retrieving a gift from me or something. And I'm imagining what I'm going to say. And instead she comes back around the corner again with. Her head sunken holding a completely squeezed flat tube, tooth Colgate toothpaste, asking for more.
And, and, and so in that moment, you know, there was a beautiful time where I got to have that, oh my God, this is what we're supposed to do. It doesn't matter if it fits this is what's needed today. And then yet also see there's so much more we can do. And when you lead like that, That is authentic leadership.
And, and, and the other thing that, you know, you're all about all authenticity. I got, I got a riff on vulnerability because it I'm really discovering something where there's never been more inauthenticity in the world that I've lived in than I see today self prescribed. And I'm not saying that angry. I'm just saying that as an observer and a little uncomfortable with it.
It's so it matters so much more today. How you show up. It matters so much more today. I was going to riff way down, further in that, and maybe we can.
Adam Conner: Maybe, you know, I, uh, you know, I mean, I'm sure you got a ton of stories about all, all sorts of different situations like this. Um, you know, whether it be somebody who you're delivering food to, and maybe you felt a comfortable laying on the roof all the way back to that first story that you told me, what is clear through all of them is not only this desire to serve, as you told me before, but also almost a duty.
It feels. To make more than just safe and dry to make people's lives better. The reason why I say it like that is because I can't tell you how many times I, I hear that and it'll be like a, let's say somebody who has the marketing for like a tech company and it's like, make people's lives better. Well, I, I get it.
I, you know, I know why, you know, I know why the thing that you're doing is making people's lives more efficient or more productive. But at the end of the day, I just, I don't feel it. It's not public. It doesn't, it comes from their head. It doesn't very much come from the. Another quote that you had told me that I want to hear your thoughts on, and maybe we can get into vulnerability a little bit about it.
You just, you told me that a good mantra to live by, or maybe it was more micro than that, but I thought of it as macro is to lift everyone you pass. Do you have, I mean, like who have you looked up to? Who. Who lifted you? I I'm so curious because obviously you've, you've gotten the people to help you tell these stories.
Well, and yet, and you have the stories, thankfully, that you can tell, um, just as you lift every one that you passed, do you have a few examples of those who we can either look up to or who you've looked up to, who have lifted you, who have passed you and lifted.
Charles Antis: Uh, I mean, there's, I got to go back to the simple stories because they define us once we pause and look back in our lives, and I told you about John Shurtleff and, you know, I, I recently read he's passed on, but he lived that kind of life.
And there was another guy, uh, that I remember what this is just Halloween time. And when I was six or seven and, you know, I lived in a, in a relatively poor area and, you know, it was, it was middle-class, but people you get a Tootsie roll or a wax, you know, wax lips. Trick or treat at a house. There was this one house, it was the Hannah House.
They owned the Coca-Cola bottling company. And we knew when we went there that they were going to have a witches' cauldron full of root beer, that they somehow the brood. And I get this big mug of root beer. And I was also going to get like, like a $2 candy bar that was going to be the biggest candy bar.
And so there was something magic about people that had capacity. It was, it was whether, you know, it felt, it always. Like, you know, there's something always good about people that shared what they had. And I just think that I've always noticed that in companies and I live in orange county where some companies do a good job of telling that story, whether it's Edwards, life sciences, PIMCO, taco bell, there's so many companies while who's fish tacos and, you know, and they, they live in such a way where their employees get to see it and feel it, you know, and, and also I got to say, you know, It's all about real stories, how your real stories show up.
We give out giving cards in our company, which are 5 0 1, 3 C gift cards. They only be cashed at a nonprofit where people get to tell who they gave it to and why. And there's the magic, you know? And like everyone that knows me, I'm going to try to pull this up. You can see my socks. I have these Stripe socks.
Those are some sweet looking socks I've been wearing. I have 40 pair in my drawer. They're a little bit worn because I've been wearing them for four years on two campaigns. These campaigns have got every roof adopted on every Ronald McDonald house by all my, by my family companies across the country, that we've also just raised $13.7 million.
Katie Rucker my co campaign chair to double the size of the house, but it happens because it's my real story. And I'm going to tell it to you quick. I have seven year old twins. They're a hundred percent healthy today, but they entered the world in. Children's hospital orange county NICU because they were six weeks premature and they weren't talking, they weren't breathing.
They had tubes stuck in him. I go in there every day. It might, or my wife's Dawn's beautiful pregnancy went to us nervously drive into the hospital. We went to the hospital twice a day for two hours a day because the CHOC nurses told us that if we took off our shirts and we laid our naked babies on our naked chest, that, that skin on skin.
For four hours every day, we give them the best chance to heal. So you knew we were there. And one day I was going in and by the way, every day, going in there, the Ronald McDonald house station was right next to that two beds. You could spend the night, they had computers, they had coffee, they had snacks.
They had a nice attendant named Susan, who was always say, oh, come here. And I ignored her. I was in fact, I feel bad today, but I was rude to Susan because I was so. Against being part of the families that had sick kids. I was in denial and I was in my lane. And one day I went in and I, and I was behind. I was late and I was going to have Charlie on my chest.
And I, and I was panicking because I had chronic heartburn that day. And I knew I wasn't going to be able to do it. I didn't know what I was gonna do. And I'm on my way in. And no attendant was at the Ronald McDonald house station. And I looked down and I saw a little green nature valley granola bar. And I, I took.
I took it cause I had no intention of Owen, anybody, anything, but I don't remember anything adamant except for about an hour and a half later. I remember being in that NICU and laying back. Gurney. And I had Charlie asleep on my chest. He was sleeping. I had no pain and I started to get that metaphor of, oh, what Ronald McDonald house does the keep families close so they can hear.
So the kids can heal and I lived it. So even though it's a simple 20 cent granola bar, it's had a huge impact in my life and the life of my stakeholders all around. And I think that's what, you know, would you want this to work? You're real stories show up. Were your real stories show up in what you do, your people's real stories show up, and then if you want to have movement, Well, it's personal to your brand, to your company's brand, to your personal brand.
Then you need to volunteer and you need to show your stories. You need to live it and show that authenticity because that's how people will know you, how you, who you stand next to. And it's really powerful when you carry the brand of goods. People see me as a Ronald McDonald house representative. Let me tell you what that feels like to their reptilian brain, to the reptilian brain, the same brain that would have been nomadically traveling across the Plains 10,000 years ago.
It means I'm safe to travel. That means for their children. I'm safe to travel with because I think it is unimaginable to ignore sick children. That's not words, but when you see someone who represents a nonprofit like Ronald McDonald house, the reaction is there's a good vibe and that vibe translates to safe families.
The same thing, you know, we've done it all the rest for habitat. We're going to, in two weeks, we're going to, we're going to show up on a build site in orange county and we're going to drive the 500,000. Into the hundred and 37,000 tile that we've donated roofing, providing free roofing for the last 86 families over the last 11 years.
And we're going to have KTLX there to tell that story because it's a big story when you live this impact. Cause it makes us feel so good because we know that those families that go into those homes that we help provide. They are three times more likely to go on to further their education after high school.
In fact, that is exactly what's happened on these 86 homes where we've donated the roofing. Those families have gone on 76% of the. To further their education after high school. And that's a huge difference. And when you live that it's powerful when you live your real stories and people know where you came from, they can trust you.
And, and the last thing I'll tell you, as advice to my friends out there is volunteer, joined the committee for the cause that's near and dear to your heart. And. Do this scrutinize who the leader is, make sure they're a good business leader, not just a passion person for their cause and look at who's on the board and join the cause that has board members who have something you want.
This is a really noble cause that you're doing. If you can assume those traits, then you can do. Be more, see yourself higher and do more with your company. And I think when you see it that way, it's really powerful. So that's the type of leadership that I recommend. If you're in businesses to make money over the next 10 years, you're good luck.
You need to have a story and your story needs to have a purpose and it needs to ring with authenticity. So when people hear it, they go, oh, They get you. And by the way, the vulnerability I spoke to earlier, it's really important. Like if, if I walk into a room and I'm dressed really good and I, and I trip and fall.
Uh, the vulnerability is this in my, on my way down. Am I worried what people are going to say? And I'm in, is that, is that look on my face or am I guffawing at myself? And then, you know, there's a moment where you just let yourself go if you're too rehearsed. So I don't, when I prepare for a talk like this, I can't prepare the word.
If I have to read a teleprompter, I'd get it. I'll have to do it, but I want to tell it as fresh and real as possible. I want to make a mistake when I tell it. So you can tell it's real. I want you to ask me a sideways question. I want you to qualify it so you can tell that it's real. And I think when you, when you start to see it, like you have to tell it like that, then people start to believe it.
And it matters more than ever. Five years ago, Adam people said, don't be so. Nobody tells me that today, the world is craving authenticity and it shows up by your end unrehearsed, it shows up by the way you react, when you're real in the moment, it shows up by you telling your real stories of how you believe you can share what you have your doctor on an airplane thing that makes the world a better place.
Adam Conner: Yeah.
I don't even know how to follow that up or close it. I'm Ghana. I don't think I do it justice, because you told me story after story, after story to me, I think about this word. So show's gone Authentic Avenue. I focus on that word a lot. Authenticity. I'm about to ask you a question to define that word. Not only even know if I can, because I feel like I spent the last 40 minutes doing it and I personally see the word of the lens.
I don't see it as a thing. It is a lens through which people act and give and invest in behave. I want to figure out how to make it tactile. So I, in closing would like to ask you this, you have all of these phrases and sayings and stories. If there were a Charles Antis dictionary and the word authenticity happened to be in there, and you flip to that page, what might that definition read?
I want to know how you think about that word, how you define it. And I know it's through the stories. I'm just curious if there's a prevailing sentiment through it, all that you think encapsulates it. Well,
Charles Antis: well, I think Hoth intensity for me is, is believing you can and living your life. In such a way that you could tell anybody anything a hundred percent truthful.
Imagine if you could live your life in such a way where no longer where there's secret shading, we no longer were. Imagine if you never resented where you saw everything as a blessing where you could pause in the moment and not know, you know, I think, uh, authenticity is not knowing. Because in not knowing we can hear and we can discover the most beautiful new things in a world that is changing faster than it's ever changed in any of our lab lifetimes.
Adam Conner: As a fantastic words to, to close with, I am thrilled that I was able to bring your perspective and story here because. I said it at the top. I don't think I've had a competition quite like it, at least not here. So I am highly grateful for what you do. The stories that you tell in the way that you are.
Thank you for it. And, um, uh, on behalf of the viewers and listeners, everybody who ever consumes this now until eternity, appreciate you walking down Authentic Avenue with me.
Charles Antis: Thank you.