Simon Clark is the founder of Sustainable Homes Melbourne, Melbourne’s leading renovation expert designing and building beautiful, liveable transformations that respect the Australian environment.
Simon began his career as a carpenter in the year 2000 and is a self-confessed timber nerd. After completing a Diploma in Green Energy Assessment in London, England, Simon brought his new-found passion for environmentally-conscious construction back to Australia, launching Sustainable Homes Melbourne in 2014.
Simon has since become a huge advocate for environmental sustainability, including co-founding industry climate action organisation Builders Declare, where he also sits as chair. He also served on the Yarra City Council Environmental Advisory committee.
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Table of Contents
If you were in an elevator with Warren Buffett, how would you describe your company, services, or products? What makes your company different from others? What is your company’s biggest strength?
Simon Clark: Sustainable Homes Melbourne transforms people’s lives. This sounds big, but it’s real.
People who live in leaky, run-down old homes that are freezing in winter and stifling hot in summer put their trust in us to transform these homes into beautiful, comfortable, sustainable homes. Our company’s biggest strength is the ‘timber nerds’ out on site every day, breathing life back into these old homes.
Carpentry is such an important profession in our society, and it should be celebrated more. The work we do is highly skilled, bespoke and incredibly intricate – there are very few people who can do it
Quiet quitting, The Great Resignation, are an ongoing trend causing many businesses to struggle keeping talent engaged and motivated. Most are leaving because of their boss or their company culture. 82% of people feel unheard, undervalued and misunderstood in the workplace. In your experience, what keeps employees happy? And how are adapting to the current shift we see?
Simon Clark: Nobody wants to feel undervalued.
It’s essential for business leaders to look after and ensure their employees feel valued and are heard.
Everybody has something to offer given the right opportunity, and it is more than important than ever in what continues to be a candidate-driven market, that employers are creative in assigning the right tasks to the right staff member.
Sustainable Homes Melbourne makes a point to keep our team (on- and off-site) updated every quarter on the ambitions and challenges the business is dealing with
Here is a two fold question: What is the book that influenced you the most and how? Please share some life lessons you learned. Now what book have you gifted the most and why?
Simon Clark: The book that has influenced me most recently is Ray Dalio’s ‘Principles’. The one major thing I have taken away and am implementing is the exercise of reflecting on the outcomes that occur from my actions.
I use this in my personal and professional life. It’s helped me to understand what I could do differently when faced with similar decisions in the future and enabled me to consider different ways of dealing with problems life and business throw at me.
The book I gift most is ‘A Thousand Splendid Suns’ by Khaled Hosseini because it is simply a beautiful book.
Business is all about overcoming obstacles and creating opportunities for growth. What do you see as THE real challenge right now?
Simon Clark: The real challenge right now is supporting people while we navigate an upheaval to the way our homes are used.
Most of our clients are professionals who have adopted a hybrid approach to work, meaning they’re spending a lot more time at home and are therefore demanding more things from their home. It’s good for us, we’ve always thought people should expect a lot from a home in the way of comfort, amenity and general quality of our living environment.
From inception, we have aimed to improve the quality, sustainability and energy-efficiency of old homes.
In your experience, what tends to be the most underestimated part of running a company? Can you share an example?.
Simon Clark: Without a doubt, the number one lesson has been that we must be adaptable in business and life more generally. There’s nothing surer than things will change, it’s not a good or bad thing. It makes me appreciate the present.
This is the attitude that has given me the strength and resilience to thrive after 20 years in a volatile business environment that includes recessions and of course the pandemic.
You’re never completely ready for change, but you need to be agile enough to roll with the punches an accept what is in your control when the time comes
What does “success” in the year to come mean to you? It could be on a personal or business level, please share your vision.
Simon Clark: I’m really looking forward to the leaders I’m working with grow and hone their skills in the industry.
I’m very fortunate to have a great group of people to work with at Sustainable Homes Melbourne.
We have some big plans for how we can improve all aspects of our product and stand up clearly as Melbourne’s number one sustainable home builder
We are working on some interesting projects that will redefine and transform the idea of what it means to live in a sustainable home in a major city.
Jed Morley, VIP Contributor to ValiantCEO and the host of this interview would like to thank Simon Clark for taking the time to do this interview and share his knowledge and experience with our readers.
If you would like to get in touch with Simon Clark or his company, you can do it through his – Instagram
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