Michael BoazMichael Boaz is the Founder of Boaz Construction, which offers budget development, vendor and subcontractor management, equipment sourcing, and more. General Contractors Magazine has recognized Boaz Construction as one of “The Best Commercial Contractors in Indianapolis, Indiana,” “The Best Tenant Improvement Contractors in Indianapolis, Indiana,” and “The Best Apartment and Condo Interior Contractors in Indianapolis, Indiana.”

Michael is also the Founder of iRestore, LLC, which offers roof inspection and replacement services, and Meadows Design Complex, which focuses on property management and redevelopment. He is certified by Procore Technologies as a Project Manager of Core Tools.

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Here’s a Glimpse of What You’ll Hear:

  • How did Michael Boaz’s entrepreneurial journey begin?
  • Michael discusses his process of working with owners in the hospitality industry
  • How restaurants have adjusted to the pandemic
  • Michael’s approach to managing a team and raising a family
  • How the pandemic allowed Michael to slow down
  • The coaches and peers that have positively influenced Michael

In this episode…

From running lemonade stands at a young age to building high-end homes and commercial buildings today, Michael Boaz has been through the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. So, what has his experience taught him about business leadership?

Like many across the globe, Michael’s life was impacted by the pandemic. However, he was fortunate enough to find the good within the unsettling times. Michael was able to slow down, spend more time with his family, and focus on what really matters. This period of reflection allowed him to rethink his priorities and improve the direction of his business.

In this episode of the Top Business Leaders Show, John Corcoran sits down with Michael Boaz, Founder of Boaz Construction, to talk about his leadership journey. Michael discusses how he brings value to clients, his predictions for the future of the restaurant industry, and how he manages a team with a growth mindset. Stay tuned!

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Rise25 Co-founders, Dr. Jeremy Weisz and John Corcoran, have been podcasting and advising about podcasting since 2008.

About Dr. Jeremy Weisz and John Corcoran

Dr. Jeremy Weisz is the Co-founder of Rise25. He has been involved in podcasting for 11 years and was a Senior Producer for one of the early business podcasts; he assisted in putting all of their systems in place and helped them add volume, feature, and edify various business leaders.

Dr. Weisz has also been running his podcast, Inspired Insider, since 2011. He has featured top entrepreneurs, founders, and CEOs of P90X, Atari, Einstein Bagels, Mattel, the Orlando Magic, and many more.

In addition to running Rise25, Dr. Weisz owns a nutritional supplement business and runs his chiropractic and massage facility, Chiropractical Solutions & Massage.

John Corcoran is a recovering attorney, an author, and was a former White House writer and speechwriter to the Governor of California. Throughout his career, John has worked in Hollywood, the heart of Silicon Valley, and has run his boutique law firm in the San Francisco Bay Area catering to small business owners and entrepreneurs.

John has been the host of the Smart Business Revolution Podcast since 2012. He has interviewed hundreds of CEOs, founders, authors, and entrepreneurs, from Peter Diamandis and Adam Grant to Gary Vaynerchuk and Marie Forleo.

John is also the Co-founder of Rise25, a company that connects B2B businesses with their ideal clients, referral partners, and strategic partners and generates ROI through their done-for-you podcast service.

Episode Transcript

Intro  0:04  

Welcome to the Top Business Leaders Show powered by Rise25 Media, we feature top founders, executives, and business leaders from all over the world.

John Corcoran  0:20  

All right, welcome everyone. John Corcoran here. I’m the host of this show and every week talk to smart founders, entrepreneurs, CEOs, all kinds of different companies ranging from Netflix to YPO EO activation Blizzard Kinkos lending tree Open Table, go check out some more archives lots of great episodes there. I’m also the co founder of Rise25, where we help connect our b2b business owners to their ideal prospects. And this episode is actually part of our Doubledare executive coaching series sponsored by Scott Anderson if you’re looking for an experienced executive coach that has been in the trenches as an entrepreneur to help your you break through a business plateau, Scott Anderson and double their executive coaching offer a proven system to scale your life personally and professionally. He has over 30 years experience as a proven entrepreneur who started over a half dozen companies, also a master’s degree in clinical counseling, which is just unheard of that kind of background, check out Doubledareyou.us for quick online assessment and schedule a free business blueprint from Scott That’s doubledareyou.us. And my guest today is Michael Boaz. He’s the founder of Boaz Construction and iRestore. Boaz Construction is a company that specializes in commercial construction. It’s based in Indianapolis, Indiana, and iRestore is a restoration company focused on insurance work. He fun fact Michael has two bachelor’s degrees, you don’t see that very often. And also is an active member of Entrepreneurs’ Organization EO which is a great organization I participate in as well. And of course, this episode is brought to you by Rise25, where we help b2b business owners to get clients referrals and strategic partnerships with done for your podcast, go to rise25media.com to learn more. Alright, so Michael, we’re chatting beforehand about how you first got involved in entrepreneurship. And at the age of the ripe old age of five years old or so, you said a picture appeared in your local paper with you running a lemonade stand on your parents’ lawn. And I think that’s so cool, because it took me a long time to get around to entrepreneurship. But it sounds like you had kind of had it in your bones. Were you raised in an entrepreneurial family? Or did you just have kind of a drive to go out and sell some water down lemonade and make 50 cents a pop but at a young age?

Michael Boaz  2:31  

Yeah, so I was raised in an entrepreneurial family. My, my family’s sort of my dad’s sides, like, third generation, Middle Eastern, and Syrian to be specific. And so that whole side of the family all had their own business, you know, like a shoe store.

John Corcoran  2:53  

In the States or back in in Syria?

Michael Boaz  2:57  

Yeah, in Indiana. Yeah. And in a town where I grew up called Terre Haute, Indiana. So grocery stores, attorneys, lots of grocery stores. So I was, I was always like, Saturdays we’d go and, you know, go and clean out rental property and visit grocery stores. And so I just saw that my, from a young age that everyone owns their own business, I always knew that that’s what I was going to do.

John Corcoran  3:26  

And, and aside from the lemonade stand, were you also starting businesses like in high school?

Michael Boaz  3:31  

Well, I, I cut grass. So I had lawns that would, so I always had, like, you know, between 20 and $60 in my pocket. And and another thing we had these contests every year in school, you know, you would so think it was like, I’m trying to remember was a candy and stuff. Yeah. And so there was, this guy would come right to the classroom, and we’d be prizes, and he tell you all these prizes. So three years in a row, I was number one salesman, and wow. And you know, I’d given my mom would hit everyone up at her work, I’d go door to door to door. And just I got this little television that was like, it had a handle. You could carry it. This is in the 80s. And that’s technology. Huge, huge deal. So I’m not sure how you really you were the coolest kid in school when she got that thing. Yeah, I took a lot of pride in that. And so yeah, I always kind of had a need to you know, have some money in my pocket. Yeah, yeah.

John Corcoran  4:46  

And then, so you go and you graduated from your first bachelor’s degree, which you got in construction management and you went into construction shortly after that. what point did you take an interest in

Michael Boaz  4:58  

building things? That’s a good question. I’ve wondered that myself, it’s either, you know, it’s either pictures I grew up, looking at, at the wall on, you know, on the wall, or my dad had rental property. And his idea of a remodel was, I remember one time, there was a hole in the wall. And he screwed a piece of plywood over it. And I just remember thinking like, there’s got to be a better way. Or,

John Corcoran  5:32  

I laugh because I’m looking at your website right now. And you have this beautiful restaurant on, you know, in in the front page of your website, just gorgeous high end, luxury, you know, looks like the most elegant place to go eat. So I can’t even imagine you coming from that. But maybe that’s how you got a passion for making things look beautiful.

Michael Boaz  5:52  

It is a phenomenal place actually to, to to experience if you’re ever in Indianapolis that that photo you’re looking at is called Barwin. 14. It’s it’s a it’s a vision of Martha Hoover, who’s sort of the queen bee restaurant here in Indianapolis. And but yeah, I love that. That photo you just mentioned I love making beautiful spaces and beautiful finishes and just creating a space that’s going to be community and I really enjoy that. But what’s that?

John Corcoran  6:26  

Tell me a little bit? I’m jumping ahead here, probably but what’s that interaction like working with the restaurant tour? You’re the construction company. Were you know, implementing the vision Tell, tell me what that’s like, you know, she comes to you with a new project or any your clients come to you with new project?

Michael Boaz  6:43  

Take us through what that process is? Like? That’s a good question. What here’s what I want it to be like, they come to me with whatever level they’re at, in their journey with what they know about their business, which is ultimately hospitality. It’s a very tough business. And once I listen to them and understand their needs, I love to advise and I love to solve problems for them. I want to make their life easier. I want to make the structure easier to manage, own eliminate problems. So I want I know that any with any business. But probably specifically a restaurant here once you’re open, it’s very difficult to close and fix anything. All the time. Yeah. Yeah. And so we, early on, I was just fascinated with making things very robust. Like, I remember I went into this space and I and I looked at the new the dishwasher. And like it was just black, the walls black. Everything was rotten, rusted. And I’m like, Man, that is. That’s just it’s disgusting. It’s wrong. And so we we actually developed our own details. For walls, wet walls, walls, we build very robust non. The products that we use in the walls we build in the restaurant, just for example, it’s a little bit nuts and bolts. Building Science is not terribly sexy, but they don’t mold. They don’t rot. They don’t mildew. They don’t feed mold. They don’t break. And so we take a lot of pride in that. And then you know today restaurants are often about an experience. It even even the the restroom. It’s gotta have, it’s gotta be it’s gotta be nice. It’s

John Corcoran  8:46  

so funny too. I can tell because I’m looking at your Instagram here. You’ve got pictures of these beautiful restrooms that you’ve created that are obviously look like a restaurant.

Michael Boaz  8:55  

Restroom. Yeah, so if we’re doing tile work in a restaurant, we look at it as artwork. If we are doing we’re adjusting every every, every time we build we’re adjusting till we get a very comfortable like banquette seat where you’re seated at a table, the elevations of the tables. So it’s really just all about solving the problem for the owner. And and improving the experience for the user. And that’s simply put, we’re going to deliver more value if we build your space, because we’re not there to build what’s on the print and and then have a transaction. We’re there to give you more value than then we’re receiving. And we’re going to go above and beyond because we know what doesn’t work. Yeah, so yeah, it’s

John Corcoran  9:53  

amazing because it’s so restaurant is so many different things that you wanted to be beautiful. It has to be functional. I mean, take Such a beating, you know, for a restaurant, I worked in restaurants when I was in, in college in high school, and you know, just take a super big beating. So they, they need to be all those things at once. And as you said, you can’t just shut it down and close it for a month. And, you know, you’d go out

Michael Boaz  10:16  

of business, if you did that. You have the kid that is or the, or the man or the woman or the person that is running the dishwasher station, they shouldn’t care about what’s surrounding them, they they’re not focused on keeping things dry. So we build them so they could sort of have a fire hose ran on them. And everything in the perimeter can just get completely soaked and kicked in the balls for you know, 15 20 years.

John Corcoran  10:47  

Yeah, talk to me about running. Well, let’s first talk about one more on the topic of restaurants. I don’t know how things have been over the last 18 months with COVID. And restaurants having to change in Indiana, but certainly here in Northern California, it’s been so hard on restaurants, you know, they had to, you know, there’s these different phases, first they shut down, then they could reopen for takeout. And then they could have some outside seating. So then they started building this outside seating. And then some of them really invested a lot of money in in outside seating, building more if they have the space for it, right. And they had to put a lot of money into it and then inside open again, and then that shut down and it’s outside. Again. It’s been so hard on these restaurants, how has it been for you have you stepped in with any clients and been building different seating configurations.

Michael Boaz  11:40  

We’ve assisted with a few clients and, and actuating outdoor systems enclosures where we’ll have like an aluminum frame, and it’s all covered with a clear vinyl, so you can heat it, everyone just want to increase seating. So if they could do it outside, some of them could afford to do it. We work we helped a few people there. We had clients that just rented tents and put heaters in there. And we’ve we’ve started, we’re building a few restaurants starting like right now. And we’ve seen a lot of adjustment for carry out, carry out seems to have taken, like, generally, I think it’s around 10% of the business can be carried out now. So we see a lot of restaurant tears asking and planning for a carry out station for DoorDash. Uber,

John Corcoran  12:39  

yeah, that’s a change. I’ve noticed that with restaurants in recent years, like needing to reconfigure or have a couple of, you know, spaces where the DoorDash or Uber can pull up and park and run in really quickly and get the food or and the same thing for people picking up and carrying out.

Michael Boaz  12:54  

Trying to make it efficient for everyone. Yeah. So we’ve seen a big shift there. And I believe it’s here to stay. I did what I think with, with the younger generation, with millennials, myself, and I’m in between houses right now I’m under remodel for my future home. And it’s just easy. You know, so I think that that part of business will stay. And I think it’s probably a smart idea to be prepared to make that more process as efficient as possible.

John Corcoran  13:30  

Yeah. Now, as we record this in late September 2021, the labor market hiring, recruiting has been a big challenge. I know you’ve lost a few people like every business has in you and you said that, you know, your philosophy, you know, towards managing your company and putting good talent in place is similar to what Phil Jackson did when he was coach of the bulls bringing different personality together, you know, types together. Talk to me a little bit about that philosophy that Phil Jackson approach.

Michael Boaz  14:02  

Well, I’ve had, you know, in this business, you know, you’ve got a lot of experienced guys that are sort of construction guys, you know, maybe maybe not the most eloquent, guys, but they’ve been a journeyman journeyman carpenter. So trying to just understand everyone’s strengths and playing to their strengths. If we have someone that’s a good communicator, but someone that’s not a good communicator, we have someone that only sees the worst in a situation we would we try to coach them up to really focus on changing their sort of optics in the lens of looking through. But really, really, it’s I think the biggest fascination that I have right now from Mike management and Just all those personalities is understanding the way the brain works. You know, we talked a little bit about that. And, I don’t know a tonne about Phil Jackson was a massive fan, I watched all of those games on the back to back three beats, but I knew he was, uh, at least, I think he adhered to the Buddhist. You know, I think he’s a Buddhist and. And so there’s a lot of interesting mindset, similar parallels to some of the stuff that I’m doing with a coach right now. I mean, Scott’s been a great coach of mine in the past, and he’s, and I’m still working with him today. And I’m more I’m doing a lot of the work the sort of inside out work with a coach named Demi McConkey.

John Corcoran  15:54  

What sort of mindset pieces do you find that are important to focus on whether it’s for you personally, or for one of your team members?

Michael Boaz  16:03  

Yeah, I try to, I’ve tried to have conversations and use language to, for example, if a guy, we’ve had a guy that’s like, man, just everything’s going wrong today, you know, just nothing goes right? Every time that’s the same on it. And it’s really not true. It’s like living in your past experiences and understanding. You know, the really, you’d that’s all learned behavior, and you can kind of unlearn that. And it’s really not happening to you. It’s just happening.

John Corcoran  16:42  

It’s so funny. I was at my kids back to school night, last night, and second grade teacher for my son, Toby was talking about the power of yet and saying, I can’t read yet, or I don’t know, long division yet. And it was all about this kind of growth mindset stuff.

Michael Boaz  16:59  

Yeah, I literally, if I hear myself say anything like that, I I’m very careful today. I don’t, I’m careful of the things I say around my children. I have a six three and one. And if even if my wife wants to do things, something that I financially, I don’t want to just say, well, rather than say, we can’t afford that, I say, well, let’s figure out a way. Let’s let’s, let’s figure out how we can afford it. Yeah. And so I’m really trying to create a mindset. Here, one of our core values is is calm, assertive. And so, you know, it’s kind of hard. It feels a little preachy and Kochi coming from me. Some, I’m careful where I, where I intervene with some of this stuff. But I’ve been fascinated with the brain. I started, I started reading books from Dr. Bruce Lipton. I don’t know if you’ve ever I don’t know if you’re aware. Yeah. And, and really just started understanding the the brain is really just this hardware, right? And it, it gets its operating system from the basically from the third trimester up to seven years of age. And your environment is where all of this is learned, whether it’s positive or negative. You’re what you see. It’s not even what it doesn’t even have to be told to you. You’re viewing and building. Right? And that sort of creates the very powerful sub subconscious mind.

John Corcoran  18:53  

Yeah, absolutely. Let’s, let’s talk about, you know, this last 18 months have been just absolutely crazy. For so many businesses. Take me back to March or 2020, when the pandemic hit, what was going through your mind? I know you had some projects that you were working on at the time, and you were fortunate to be considered an essential business. But, you know, did you at any point, did you freak out? Or did you know how, what was the reaction like for you?

Michael Boaz  19:24  

Yeah, so, you know, respect to all of those businesses that I know a lot of people struggled. I knew a lot of people struggling. A lot of people, especially in hospitality. We’re not in a good situation even to get PPP because maybe they weren’t financially healthy. So I don’t want to seem disrespectful to anyone. But for me, it was only positive. It was only just like, for the first time I slowed down and spent like meaningful time with my children. And I had Add Time, and I just started, I started just relaxing, I noticed that I was sleeping really good. And again, I don’t want to sound like short sighted are way off base here. But my experience was never fearful, we were an essential business, we did have some really good projects going. And one of them was a surgery center. So we felt like we’re helping people on some level and in the healthcare industry. And so, for me, it was a, it was a first time I had an opportunity to really slow down and be grateful for what I did have, and try to design my life and improve, you know, the direction that I wanted to go in. And I, I was showing up to my EO meetings just like, happy. And you know, never the virus has never scared me. I know that it’s it’s a totally different story for people that are high risk. But um, yeah, I think it was, it was a really good, positive experience for me.

John Corcoran  21:23  

And as things have opened up, how do you bring that experience back with you and and make changes, if any, to preserve a piece of that, that calmness, that tranquillity that you described that you had

Michael Boaz  21:43  

after COVID? You know, again, I’m gonna, I think there’s one I think Scott coaches on on, I know, he’s very interested in something called Untethered Soul. It’s a book by Michael singer and Scott Scott, and I’ve talked about it. And I was also doing some of that work with another coach, DME McConkey that I’ve mentioned. And so I started really comprehending that my situation doesn’t create my experience. Right. So I started, I really learned how to take back my experience. And, and it really is in sort of disconnected from the situational stuff that was happening around me in business, you know, because I had been through years ago, I couldn’t sleep. And I just maxed out on stress. Absolutely, max so

John Corcoran  22:49  

crazy that it would take a pandemic to solve that.

Michael Boaz  22:53  

You know, I think it was just timing, it really wasn’t so much the pandemic, I’d already started doing that work. But I think, for me, the pandemic was kind of like, you know, the realization of what really matters, you know, I think, the reflection and saying what really matters, and at that time, I realized that wasn’t, I didn’t spend enough time with my kids. You know, I got to know my kids in like, first two weeks, like on a deeper level than I had had. That’s the truth.

John Corcoran  23:27  

That’s great. That’s great. But Michael, we’re running a little short on time here, but I want to ask, you know, this is a big fan of gratitude. If you look around at you know, your peers and contemporaries, others who you’d consider maybe in your industry or other yo forum mates, you’ve mentioned a couple of thought leaders and authors that you look up to, but they were the key, you know, champions, friends, peers, contemporaries, who you would give a shout out for, for helping you along the way.

Michael Boaz  24:05  

You know, EO has been a great organization. For me, it’s opened many, many doors for me. Some of my close friends in EO guy named Sebastian and iOS Chicago guy named Ivan and EO, Indianapolis now YPO and those are really sticking out coaching Scott Scott, when I hired Scott I had never had a coach. And I just thought on my mindset was like, I’m not going to spend extra money on a coach, which was really short sighted. And so Scott was was great. I can’t say enough good things about Scott. I mean, a guy that has founded companies blown up companies is a therapist and just really gets it. Scott’s great. And I’ve continued to refer people to Scott and I continue to work with Scott. I haven’t coached him he McConkey that I’m extremely grateful for. And authors, you know, Robert Kiyosaki, Michael singer. Two that really come to mind. And I think you and I had we had a very brief conversation about Garrett Gunderson and wealth factory like,

John Corcoran  25:34  

yeah. guest on my show. Yeah.

Michael Boaz  25:38  

I spent a few years with that organization and I became friends with Garrett. While I’m going to visit Monday, and just financial IQ just went to the next level. Yeah, yeah.

John Corcoran  25:50  

Super smart guy. Well, this Michael, is it been great. Where can people go to learn more about you and your

Michael Boaz  25:56  

companies? Yeah, they can. You can follow us on Instagram at Boaz Construction. We have we have some other real estate endeavors that you can see from you can find on our you can find us on Instagram. A company called add Meadows Design Complex which will rebrand and Milky Way and yeah, if our website Boazconstruction.com, right. Yes, actually. No, actually, no, it is buildboaz.com Build.

John Corcoran  26:36  

BuildBoaz.com. Alright, cool. So go check that out. All right, Michael. Thanks so much.

Michael Boaz  26:41  

Yes, sir. Thank you.

Outro  26:42  

Thanks for listening to the Top Business Leaders Show powered by Rise25. Visit rise25.com to check out more episodes of the show and to learn more about how you can start your own podcast