Randy Gartz has a rewarding job as Managing Director of Technology Search and Consulting for Fairview Search Group. Even though he spends his workdays at the recruiting company finding the right people for the right jobs, he says it was dumb luck that set him on his own successful career path.
After leaving his hometown of Manalapan, New Jersey to study Finance and play soccer at the University of South Florida, he stayed in Tampa for two years after college before moving to Jacksonville, Florida.
While in Jacksonville, he went to a recruiting office to ask them to help him find a new opportunity and he walked out with a job leading their staffing office. "I really hit it off with the president of the company and he said he would teach me the business," Randy says. "I discovered right away that it was the perfect job for me. I ended up staying there three years and helping them grow their business."
His next job was working for 15 years with Robert Half, the largest accounting and finance recruiting agency in the world. He started out in Maryland and then Washington, D.C. before being asked to travel throughout the U.S. and occasionally to Europe. In 2001 he moved to his wife's hometown of Melbourne, Florida until 2009 when he was recruited by the owners of Sherpa to come to Charlotte.
What he loves about his work is the positive experience of helping people find employment that utilizes their talents. "Early in my career, I found a job for a guy who had been out of work for months," Randy says. "He didn't do well on his first interview, so I coached him and helped him with his confidence. Eight months later he got a job. Later, he told me how close he had been to not being able to take care of his family and how much he appreciated me putting myself on the line to help him. That's when it really hit me that my work was so rewarding."
During an interview with The O Report, Randy got the job done by sharing everything from his best timesaving tips to his favorite restaurants and his most meaningful charitable cause.
What do you love about this stage of your life?
My daughters have been “teaching me” for a while and now that they are in college I enjoy watching their minds expand from their great education. Olivia is at NC State University studying Mechanical Engineering. Rachel went to the University of Pittsburgh for her undergrad and is currently pursuing her master's degree in Occupational Therapy at East Carolina University. To see them immersed in their field and doing such great work is my greatest reward as a parent. I equally enjoy all the one-on-one time I’m able to get with my wife now that the girls are away in college. We enjoy new trips, fun times with other empty nesters, and socializing at good restaurants and concerts.
What are your wardrobe staples?
My work environment has changed over the years. I have a closet full of suits and ties but currently at Fairview Search Group we are more business casual so I have an equally large collection of khakis and golf shirts. On the weekends, I enjoy yardwork after being inside most of the week so I actually have a few drawers full of “outside” shorts and shirts mixed with many drawers of golf shorts and workout attire.
Where are your favorite places to buy clothes?
Having traveled to Europe and the UK for business on a few occasions, I was fortunate to experience first-hand how an authentic haberdasher and clothier make a fitted business shirt and suit so I enjoy local men’s stores like The Sporting Gent or Taylor Richard & Conger. Of course, Nordstrom is consistently great.
Who are your male style role models?
I’m not sure if I have one because I’m in so many different settings that my choices are quite varied. I would probably say that I follow those who are slightly on the conservative side but still creative and stylish. Probably someone like the James Bond characters professionally and LeBron James in a more casual setting.
Any favorite grooming products or grooming tips?
I’m pretty basic on grooming other than being a strong follower since Day One of the Dollar Shave Club's six-blade razor, Dove soap and Aveeno lotion applied a few times a day (because I have slightly dry skin). I also read an article years ago about shaving in both directions to remove the dead skin from your face that can cause irritation and cause wrinkles faster so I’ve done that for 20 years.
How do you stay in shape?
I played multiple sports my whole life - mostly soccer, basketball, football, golf and hockey - all the way through playing college soccer and a few years afterwards, so being physically active has always been a part of my life. I also have three brothers so that was a “sport” itself!
What are your favorite charitable causes?
I’m on the Charlotte board of the American Diabetes Association (ADA) and have been a supporter and fundraiser for ADA for over 15 years in multiple cities that I’ve lived throughout the country. The number of people suffering and finding out they have diabetes is increasing faster than any other disease in the country - currently approaching 30 million Americans. Having met many afflicted by this deadly disease, I feel a great sense of urgency and responsibility to help bring a cure.
What do you like to do in your downtime?
That’s a tough one for me as I don’t really have much downtime. I always feel I can be doing something to advance our society, my business and my relationships with family and friends so I only sleep 5-6 hours a night (I'm working on that). I enjoy yardwork and find it therapeutic and rewarding while also being a good workout. I should read more. I enjoy history and learning about the plights of other cultures for survival and success. Sunday afternoon is for watching golf and football and taking a nap.
Any timesaving tips you want to share?
Put your work outfit out before you go to bed, repack your gym bag as soon as you get home to ensure you have it to take to work for a morning or lunch workout, shop early (7 a.m.) on Saturday morning, shop online as much as you can, and plan your next day before you go to bed to help limit distractions tomorrow.
What are your favorite restaurants?
I like all types of food - my Italian/German/Irish heritage is a blessing and a curse. I prefer to mix it up so depending on the mood, my favorite places include Midwood Smokehouse (BBQ), Lorenzo’s (pizza), Capital Grille (steak), Dressler’s (Continental American), Upstream (seafood), Copper (Indian), Rai Lay (Thai), and Luce (Italian).
Where are your favorite places for a getaway?
Hope Town in the Bahamas, Amelia Island and the mountains of N.C. (Brevard, Asheville, Boone).
What was your childhood dream profession?
Professional soccer player.
What was your first car?
A 1978 Toyota Corolla that my mother had, then my sister, then my brother, then me in 1983.
Who are your favorite writers or filmmakers?
Martin Scorsese, Lesli Linka Glatter (Mad Men), Ava DuVernay (Selma), Clint Eastwood and John Grisham.
Who is your favorite hero of fiction?
What do you consider to be your greatest achievement?
Helping to raise my two children to be both successful and good caring people.
What is your motto?
Protect those who need it, and expect much from those to whom much has been given.
What is your vision for the future?
My remaining years will be balanced between preparing to care for my Mom when she begins to need it (she's 82-years-old); enjoying as much fun time with my wife and children as I can; and giving back to society for all the wonderful times, people and treasure I’ve been given in my life.
What is the best business advice you’ve ever received?
I had a very successful millionaire boss early who said “numbers don’t lie but people do.” It kept me grounded in not being swayed by opinions that weren’t deeply rooted in quantifiable facts. My Mom taught me an equally great business lesson: Listen to what the person is saying, not the words they’re using.
What did you learn from your father or grandfather that still influences you today?
Hard work pays off; finish your work before playtime.
What’s in your glass during Happy Hour?
Either Jameson with one ice cube and lime, a glass of Pinot Noir (preferably Domaine Drouhin) or a Tito’s with lemonade and cranberry.