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Johnny G & Friends

Adopting an Athlete’s Mindset in Business with Craig Tate


Teamwork is key to running a successful business, and no one knows that better than Craig Tate. A second-generation tire dealer with a passion for the tire business, Craig was a college football player who took over his father’s tire dealership with his brother, Chuck, in 2000, and named it Tate Boys Tire & Service. The two grew the business to seven locations in the Tulsa, Oklahoma area, running the multi-store business like they were operating a football team.


In 2018, Tate Boys won the Tire Review Top Shop Award, being named the best tire dealer in North America. Johnny g first met Craig about six years ago and since then, the two bonded over their love of sports and the tire business. In this episode of Johnny g & Friends, presented by Firestone, Craig and Johnny g delve into:

  • How they met and how they grew their relationship into a brotherhood (1:00)
  • What Craig learned from his dad, Bob, who started the business, and how he has carried on the foundations of how his dad ran the business (2:52)
  • The Tate family’s history of professional and college sports, including Craig’s wins at the University of Tulsa and what he learned from his brother, Chuck, in his professional baseball career (7:25)
  • How Craig’s discipline as an athlete influenced how he ran his tire business and why it’s important to be a student of the business and pay attention to detail (9:46)
  • Why emotional engagement is the most important thing to a tire sale (13:05)
  • The KPI that Craig believes is the most important to track to aid in business intelligence and growth (14:10)
  • What Craig believes is the ideal technician training process and how keeping track of technician performance fuels healthy competition (17:30)
  • The legacy Craig’s brother, mentor and business partner, Chuck, left at Tate Boys after his sudden death and how Craig continues to instill Chuck’s winning attitude into the business and his life (21:50)
  • Craig and Johnny g’s memories together including playing cribbage, golf and developing healthy competition (26:48)
  • Why Craig decided to sell Tate Boys Tire & Service to private equity backed Sun Auto Tire & Service in 2020 and how Craig is working with Sun Auto to improve retail processes and the customer experience within the company’s brands (27:55)

Watch the full episode above or subscribe to Johnny g & Friends on Apple PodcastsGoogle PodcastsYouTube, Spotify and Spreaker.