We had the good fortune of connecting with Kace Phillips and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Kace, how has your work-life balance changed over time?

Work life balance has always been a pretty tricky subject, and I’m beginning to think that in the digital world, there is no such thing. By that I don’t mean that you can’t have a personal life, but I tend to look at it as work life integration versus a work life balance. There are times during the work day when I need to do things for my family or myself, and there are times outside of the normal work day that I need to be working. There should be a balance, but there isn’t a definitive line of when each should occur.

But certainly I’ve had more of a need for balance as my career has gone on. Back in my 20s, if I wanted to leave work at 530, go to the gym for a coulple of hours, eat a relaxed dinner, and get back on my laptop to work, I was able to do that. But now, I have a wife and 2 kids under the age of 3, and they need my time, especially during the crazy hours of 530-8 or so — dinner, bath time, bed time, etc. So now I make sure that I am home at a certain time, and if I need to work at night, I tell my coworkers that I am available only after my oldest child goes to bed. It’s a lot of work in the evenings with the kids, but it really is the best part of my day.

Another thing that I’ve done at the recommendation of one of my mentors is to block off “me” time on my calendar. I chose Friday afternoons because that is typically when work is the slowest (if that’s even a thing!). But I call it “Kace Time” on my calendar and it’s 4 hours on Friday afternoons for me to do whatever I need to do. If I need to catch up on work for the week and get things done before the weekend, I’ve got that time blocked for no meetings and limited interruptions. If I want to pick up my son George early from school and take him to the park, I can do that. And oftentimes, I take that time to go play golf. It’s tough to play on the weekends, and it’s really a nice mental escape for me for a few hours to not think about the stresses of work, family, etc, and sort of mentally reset before the weekend — which allows me to give my full focus and attention to my family during those precious Saturdays and Sundays.

What should our readers know about your business?
RBA is a unique place to work. I don’t think we do things the “conventional” way, but we do what we feel is best for the growth of our clients’ businesses, the growth of our business, and the personal and professional growth of our employees. And in order to achieve that, we put our purpose in front of everything we do — to help good people do great things. If you have purpose and stick to it, the success and money will follow.

I’m definitely most proud of us earning the Ad Age Best Places to Work designation 2 years in a row. This past year, we were named the #3 Best Place to Work in the US, for companies under 200 employees. To me, that means we’re on the right track of creating a place where people can be happy in a well-rounded and balanced environment. That is the ultimate goal.

Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I always answer the question “if someone was in town for one night and could go to dinner anywhere in Dallas, where would you send them?” with Javier’s. Javier’s to me is the embodiment of Dallas. It’s delicious, and it’s quite a scene. It’s Mexican food, which is obviously huge in Dallas, and the drinks, service, and vibe are unparalleled. I truly love that place. But obviously if a friend was in town for a week, we have much more to do. I’ll name a few things I’d like to do with them:

– Go to Deep Ellum Art Co for a show
– Go to Granada for a show
– Go for a walk around White Rock Lake
– Eat a burger at the original Jack’s Burger House on Hillcrest
– Eat xiao long bao and hand-pulled noodles at Royal China
– Grab drinks at Cosmo’s in Lakewood
– Sing karaoke at One Nostalgia
– Watch the sunset and drink cocktails at Bar Belmont
– Go day drinking and eat cheesesteaks at Truckyard
– Eat the spring rolls at Green Papaya
– Play golf at Dallas Athletic Club
– Walk around the Dallas Farmer’s Market and eat a ton of food

Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
I definitely think my dad would be the best answer here. While there have been many people and mentors that have helped me get to where I am today, I wouldn’t be anywhere without him. First, he was my mentor throughout my life, and as an entrepreneur himself, I learned a ton about what it means to own a business and truly take care of those who worked with you. He taught me the values of running a lean operation, of honesty, trust, and integrity. I saw the way he ran his businesses and the success he had and always wanted to emulate that. He would tell me that “if you do what you say you’re going to do, things will usually work out pretty well.” and to “do the best you can with what you’ve got.” I think if you live up to those two principles, you’ll do just fine.

The other way my dad was a huge support to me throughout my life was financially. I was very fortunate that I was able to get a great education at St. Mark’s School of Texas and Arizona State University without incurring any debt. I’m forever grateful to him for that. I also graduated college in the middle of the Great Recession and he was very generous in helping me get through those tough times when it was nearly impossible for a recent college grad to find a good job. I’m not sure I would’ve come out of things ok without his support and encouragement during those times.

Website: therba.com

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Nominate Someone: ShoutoutDFW is built on recommendations and shoutouts from the community; it’s how we uncover hidden gems, so if you or someone you know deserves recognition please let us know here.