How has your multi-generational business remained successful after all these years?
: Everybody has to work for the common good of the family and not think of
their personal agendas. My uncles and my father stressed that and we continue to
stress that if the company does good, everybody will benefit. So you have to
think of the company first and everybody will be fine.
: We pride ourselves on being one of the last full service gas stations in
Hawaii. So when our customers come in, they get a little bit of extra. We check
their oil levels, we fill up their water reservoirs, we check their tire
pressure and we try to give as much value back to our customers.
: You have to be optimistic, be positive, and learn as much as you can about
the business and your competitors and just have a lot of grit to stay on the
What does it take to be a good leader?
: We have to work by example. We work shoulder to shoulder with our
coworkers, our employees. We’re not afraid to get our hands dirty and basically
we’re leading by example.
: We all work 6 days a week. By being out there almost all hours of the day,
wiping and vacuuming cars, whatever needs to get done, our associates see that
we’re not afraid to do the work with them. I believe that they appreciate that
more and that helps them realize that they’re valued here as well.
How do you promote McKinley Car Wash?
: The best way our business is promoted is just by taking care of our
customers. We donate a lot to organizations for things like silent auctions and
fundraising events; from what I’ve heard, it’s always a popular item.
: We don't advertise. It’s basically word of mouth. When customers find us
and they like us, they tell other people.
How do you learn from your competitors?
: My grandfather and his brothers laid a solid foundation for this business
to grow. Even though there are other businesses opening around us, I’ve come to
welcome the competition. I get to see what other people do differently and
ultimately, it makes us better. It shows us where we aren’t doing things well
and where we’re better than others. It’s all a learning opportunity for us.
What is the best part about working with Hawaii National Bank?
: We see them a lot. They're our customers and friends. We trust them. I love
that they give great advice.
: What I like best is our close interaction with them. Their service is
like our service; they’re quick to return a phone call, prompt with their
answers, whatever we need. In the early 2000’s, the property adjacent to
McKinley Car Wash came on the market. We were interested and HNB was right there,
making it very easy for us to get a loan to purchase and make some upgrades to
our equipment. The property allowed us to create a safer place for safety
checks, car detailing and a lunchroom for our employees.