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CEO of Innovative Air’s Behind-The-Scenes Battle

February 2, 2022

Michael Carlo: “My Behind-The-Scenes Battle”

Building A Family And A Business While Fighting
Stage 4 Breast Cancer

Here’s something most people don’t know about Michael Carlo, CEO of Innovative Air: The challenges of growing a successful HVAC company with 32 employees have always taken a backseat to the REAL challenge in his life — his wife’s 15 year battle with stage 4 breast cancer.

What Have The Last 15 Years Been Like For You?

I’ve been dealing with terminal breast cancer for the past 15 years. It was the backdrop of my life. Chemo, surgeries, and “change of plans” were my constants — throughout raising two daughters, growing a company, and the ups and downs of living.

We tend to forget that no matter who you are or what you do for a living — we all are human beings with VERY human struggles. This one’s mine.

How Did You Manage To Build A Successful Business From The Ground Up While Dealing With All This?

When you’re dealing with life and death, you see things with more clarity. Everyday frustrations — broken appliances, stressful schedules, difficult people — are just blips on your radar, if they show up at all.

It’s hard to get worked up about a minor inconvenience when your wife is going into experimental surgery that may or may not be life-saving.

Living from moment to moment and being there to experience life’s inconveniences can no longer be taken for granted. That perspective allowed me to not sweat the small stuff.

How Has Your Personal Life Shaped Who You Are As CEO Of Innovative Air?

You never really know what’s going on with another person. I know this all too well. And that’s why it’s easy for me to give other people leeway to be human.

When one of my employees is not acting themselves — it can be a minor giveaway — I make sure to pull them aside and find out what’s going on underneath their neutral exterior. Divorce, loss, financial hardship…everyone’s got something.

What’s Something You’d Like More People To Realize?

We’re all human. We’re all dealing with something. And we all deserve kindness.


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If you’re looking for a HVAC company that will give you all the time, attention and energy you deserve, contact Innovative Air today!