Today I brought a friend to coffee!
The 411: Helaine worked a corporate job in New York, living the day to day grind with a steady paycheck and all the perks before an accident left her with a broken back. Doctors told her the workouts she loved were off the table – no more Soul Cycle, no more Barry’s Bootcamp, nothing high impact.
Helaine quickly researched what she COULD do and found rowing! She couldn’t shake the idea that this workout could help others. She dove in and started CityRow in 2012.
Today CityRow has franchises across the country, their own studios and an at home experience called CityRow GO. She’s been featured on the Today Show, Shape Magazine, Health Magazine, and the NY Post among others. Basically, she’s a PR darling.
Helaine sugar coats nothing when explaining the obstacles she conquered, how she figured out what she’s good at and how to translate your skills to start a business.
Key questions to ask yourself (15:33):
Are there a lot of players in this space?
What’s my differentiating factor?
What makes me different from the competition and how do I stand out?
Helaine biggest secret? She manages her energy, not her time! For some people meetings are more draining than checking emails. For others it’s the exact opposite! Sit down and get clear about when you’re “on” and when you’re not. Once you figure that out you can optimize what to do and when.
By avoiding burnout. When Helaine started CityRow she started it as a side hustle. As in she still had a full time corporate job and didn’t quit that job until she was sliding credit cards in the studio. While this worked, she admits it caused major burn out. She now pencils in putting herself first. To do this she looks at her calendar the night before and makes changes as needed to prioritize her physical and mental health.
Leave pockets of “nothing” in your calendar. These pockets of nothing leave room for magic. It’s during the nothing times that we can hear great ideas in a podcast or book that can end up changing our lives.
Did you hear Mirror was bought out by Lululemon? Mirror is an early-stage start up that sells a mirror-like computer screen that works out with you. Here’s the link to the article.
Large players, like Lululemon, are buying competitors and absorbing new innovative companies. If large players don’t have innovation in-house they are spending big money to secure it. This business strategy works across industries and can be a solid win for both parties!
Gmail plugins are Helaine’s jam. Her current favorite is Streak. It helps you manage important emails, bump things back, and send emails later.
She also recommends grammarly to catch pesky grammatical mistakes and Slack for keeping connected while working from home.
Check out her company, on the web: City Row and on Instagram.
Helaine can be found on LinkedIn as well as Instagram.
Next week we’re talking to Charlie O’Donnell from Brooklyn Bridge Ventures. Get your stalking in now friends, here is his LinkedIn and of course a link to add our coffee date to your calendar!
See you then!