Too often in the pool and spa industry we see individuals taking sole credit for what is a group effort.
Frequently, a spectacular end result may have very little to do
with the pool contractor. That person may even end up with an award
for something that was successful in spite of them, not because of
It’s time our industry, as a whole, verifies what many of
us already know: the importance of the team.
On large projects in particular, it’s commonplace to
involve multiple design professionals. Architects, landscape
architects and interior decorators may all weigh in on a
You will notice that I left out the pool designer. This is
because there are only a handful of true pool designers. Pool
contractors that have had some formal training in design elements
are now becoming more prevalent in our environment.
But the crucial component of the team is the homeowner, also
known as your customer. Many times, the desires of the owner get
overlooked in the process of determining who will be the
“lead dog.” This can result in individuals focusing on
finding deficiencies in others’ work as opposed to
participating in solutions.
This type of conflict typically occurs when one or more of the
team members are incompetent, and attempt to throw the other
players under the proverbial bus. But then the whole team loses,
especially the owner.
The opposite is true as well. Case in point is the privilege I
had recently of working with a homeowner in Beverly Hills, Calif.
An incompetent pool contractor had attempted a remodel of an
existing pool alongside a spectacular home. The crisp, modern
details of the home went unnoticed to the pool man, and his design
and execution of the slot overflow and surge tank were a complete
We were ultimately called to provide design and mechanical
solutions, and the process of developing the end result as a team
was a true pleasure. I worked with John Crystal, Scot Robertson and
Jodi White of John Crystal
Pools, Jimmy Reed of Rock Solid
Tile, and Kenny Larribas, the homeowner’s representative
and job coordinator.
We partnered with a group of talented shotcrete applicators and
stainless steel fabricators to create a very special backyard. Not
only does this stunning project mirror the architecture down to the
smallest details, but the owner is thrilled in spite of the process
she had to go through to achieve the end result.
Did my company participate at a high level? Absolutely. Do we
deserve all the accolades? That would be an emphatic no.
Until our industry wakes up to the team concept, we will always be
viewed in the role that many in our industry play: the low bidder
on another’s idea.
Remember, true credibility is something you earn. False credentials
and taking credit for the hard work, talent and intellect of others
does nothing to enhance the perception of our industry. The
client – the most important part of the team – deserves
better, and so do the rest of us.