Bryan Golnek is the founder and CEO of Golnek Sports. Through this company, he offers clients physical therapy, helping them deal with back pain and other joint issues that come with extreme sports. Golnek got into this career out of a passion for sports. While in college, he wanted to become a baseball player, but an injury meant he could not play at its optimum. Being the go-getter that he is, Golnek decided to channel his energy toward helping athletes in need of physical therapy. He trained, got the necessary certifications, and worked under a mentor for a year. It is only after he felt confident enough that he ventured out and started the highly successful Golnek Sports. Besides running Golnek Sports, Bryan Golnek is also into philanthropy and has for years donated to foundations looking to help reunite lost children with their parents. Golnek is also looking to start offering periodic free therapy sessions to the elderly. Golnek is also a mentor and has, over the years, helped many young people launch careers in physical therapy, among other entrepreneurial ventures. He takes pride in knowing that his skills are changing the lives of athletes and helping others find a way to earn a living.
Where did the idea for your career come from?
I was always the athlete amongst my friends, even when we were kids. This love for sports grew on me, and in college, I used to play baseball and hoped to do it professionally. Unfortunately, I got an injury one day, and while I could still play, I knew I couldn’t compete at the top levels. At the same time, I got fascinated by the physical therapy sessions I had been through. That’s when I decided to go for training in physical therapy and do it professionally. I did several certifications, worked under a mentor for a year then launched Golnek Sports. It’s been a decade-long journey, and I love every bit of it.
What does your typical day look like and how do you make it productive?
My typical day involves dealing with my team in the morning to schedule the clients we need to see for the day. By 9 a.m. I am usually ready to start seeing clients, which I do until 3 p.m. After that, I leave to go meet new clients and pitch to new ones. To make my day productive, I ensure that I start my day as organized as possible. This helps me give clients the best possible services while saving enough time in the day for networking.
How do you bring ideas to life?
Whenever I get a new idea, I act on it immediately. Whatever challenges I encounter during the implementation phase, I can deal with them on the go. I learned early that once you get an idea and start scrutinizing it before implementation, you will abandon it. There is always a tendency to overanalyze and, in the process, miss out on potentially life-changing ideas.
What’s one trend that excites you?
I am most excited about Augmented Reality and Virtual Reality. Thanks to these technologies, it is becoming increasingly easier for companies like mine to offer services virtually to a wider audience. This could be one of the ways that I believe we can unlock new growth avenues for the company going into the future. I intend to start experimenting with these technologies and see how it goes.
What is one habit of yours that makes you more productive as an entrepreneur?
I have many habits that I believe make me successful, but the biggest one is waking up early. I am always up by 4 a.m. for my morning exercise, which helps me start the day energized and alert. I believe this routine has significantly impacted how efficiently I do my job. It is one of those habits that I would urge all aspiring entrepreneurs to try out. With an energetic start to your day, you can achieve much more in a day than you can imagine.
What advice would you give your younger self?
I would urge my younger self to let their passion help them choose a career path, and not the illusion of money. When you are passionate about something, you tend to give it your all, which means a high chance of new discoveries that can lead you to new heights of success. I would also advise my younger self to develop positive habits such as eating right, and workout. These may seem trivial, but as you grow older, they can help you maintain high energy levels and stay healthy, which means less lost hours having to deal with lifestyle-related health problems.
Tell us something that’s true that almost nobody agrees with you on.
That’s a tough one. I think you would have to be exceptionally smart to know something true and no one agrees with you on. More like Einstein-level genius. That said, I always find myself in disagreements on issues that my friends or work colleagues don’t have enough data on. However, we try to get the info together and reach a consensus. It seems to work pretty well in strengthening work-related and social bonds.
As an entrepreneur, what is the one thing you do over and over and recommend everyone else do?
I would recommend that every entrepreneur have a way to get feedback from customers in real-time. It can be through a short message, an email dedicated to feedback or even a toll-free line. The idea is to ensure that you are always in the know of what your customers think of your services, and what they expect from you. I would also recommend that once you get such feedback, make sure to act on it as fast as possible.
What is one strategy that has helped you grow your business?
My strategy is to always offer the best services possible and let that be my marketing tool. The idea is always to have my clients act as my ambassadors and send their friends and others close to them to my business. This strategy has worked because my client numbers are always going up, even though I don’t spend much on paid advertising.
What is one failure you had as an entrepreneur, and how did you overcome it?
My biggest failure was hiring the wrong people at the early stages of the business. They were rude to clients and completely unmotivated. Before I could diagnose the problem, I had lost a lot of clients and almost closed down the business. To overcome this problem, I researched the business, found out what the problem was, and then replaced all the problematic employees. Things started picking up slowly, and in a few months, customer trust in my services had returned.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
I would urge them to consider getting into the Augmented Reality market. It seems to hold a lot of potential, and I believe anyone who gets into it has a strong chance of doing well going into the future.
What is the best $100 you recently spent? What and why?
I spent $100 on a lunch date with my daughter, and I loved it. I had been away for a while, so the time we spent catching up, laughing, and all that is priceless. It was $100 well spent, and I would gladly do it again.
What is one piece of software or a web service that helps you be productive?
I use Zoom a lot. It helps me easily connect with clients and get to know their issues before I book them in for a physical meeting.
What is the one book that you recommend our community should read and why?
I would recommend they read, Good to Great: Why some companies make the leap and others don’t by Jim Collins. It’s a book with many valuable insights on creating and running a company that can achieve greatness. A company whose reach is far bigger than its owner.
What is your favorite quote?
I love the quote, “there is no shortage of remarkable ideas; what’s missing is the will to execute” by Seth Godin. It’s a quote that motivates me to act on my ideas whenever they come up.
Steve (Stefan) Junge hails from Germany and helps with the day-to-day publishing of interviews on IdeaMensch. While he and Mario don’t share a favorite soccer club, their enthusiasm to help entrepreneurs is a shared passion.