We had the good fortune of connecting with Anthony Winston III, P.E. and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Anthony, as a parent, what have you done for you children that you feel has had the most significant impact?
I have two children (5 year old Charlotte and 6 year old Olivia). There are quite a few things that I’ve done that I hope make a lasting impact on my kids.
Saying “I love you”
We normalizing saying “I love you” in our household. All children need to hear it but as a father, I think it’s especially important that my little girls know Daddy loves them. I think it gives kids the confidence to face the world knowing that they have parents that are in their corner.
Money is a topic that comes up quite often in our home. I make sure they understand the value of things and that you have to work hard for whatever you want in life. As an entrepreneur, I collect checks occasionally (we’re almost totally digital) and I’ve had conversations with them as to what it means to cash a check. We also touch on creative ways to make money. So often kids get defeated because they want money but there aren’t many ways for them to make it.
Buy toys with a purpose
We’ve never really purchased toys that did not teach anything. Since they were 3 and 4, our girls have had STEAM toys such as architectural, electrical sets and chemistry sets. Hearing them come up with ways to play with the toys for unintended uses shows me that the toys spark thought. They have got into arguments about where electricity originates. As an Electrical Engineer, that brings me so much joy.
Don’t push college
As they get older and start talking about next steps, I want to make sure they know college is not the end all, be all. I want them to direct their career path and we want to empower them to do so. So many kids go to college because it’s what their parents want.
What should our readers know about your business?
I started Winston Engineering Inc while commuting on the train to my first job in construction. I came from Government contracting and realized I could make an impact in the construction industry. Winston Engineering Inc provides MEP (Mechanical, Electrical & Plumbing) Engineering construction permit plans for residential and commercial buildings. We recently celebrated 6 years in business servicing over 400 clients and over 1000 projects!
Starting a business is actually very easy. It’s running it and making a profit that can be difficult. I started the firm with just a laptop and CAD software. Finding work initially took a lot of work. While commuting, I would have a long list of potential clients and over and over say “Ok Google, call [number]”. I would cold call as many people as I could as to not waste a moment on the train. Once I got a large enough project that would sustain my family for a few months, I decided to walk away from day job. It was the most liberating feeling I have ever felt.
If you had a friend visiting you, what are some of the local spots you’d want to take them around to?
To me there is nothing better than an amazing glass of red wine and good conversation. I thoroughly enjoy wine bars especially when the person pouring is knowledgeable about wine.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
I’d like to recognize my mom, Terry Hawthorne. Since I could remember, she’s always encouraged me and told me how proud of me she was. To this day she still says how proud she is of me. Some part of me succeeded in school because I wanted to make her proud.
I’d like to recognize my Grandparents, Anthony Winston Sr and Rudy Winston (deceased). I lived with them from 10th-12th grade and I learned invaluable lessons from them about life.
I’d like to recognize my amazing wife, Erin Winston. She maintains a serous trust in me when I come up with out-of-the-box business ideas. Whenever I need to step away to take care of business, her response is always “I got you”. Now a lot of my motivation is to make her and our two little ones proud.
I’d like to recognize my fraternity, Phi Beta Sigma Fraternity, Inc. I learned a lot intangibles that I still apply in business from my frat. Items such as how to dress in meetings, conduct meetings and run organizations.