This Entrepreneur Followed His Passion. It Led Him to the 'Business of Helping Others.'
Before you can really make a business of helping others you should probably take care of yourself.
Ryan Sieker, of Phoenix, Arizona, is no stranger to helping the greater good. With a background in marketing and programming, he has been guiding businesses to the solutions they need for years. He has also played a big role in raising awareness for the Arizona Walk Now for Autism Speaks fundraiser.
Starting the beginning of 2017, Sieker’s career made an interesting shift as he took the role of president at Float Pod Technologies. It was here where he really saw the rewards of working in the industry of helping others and making a positive impact on a personal level.
What anxiety will you relieve?
The Float Pod is a sensory deprivation tank used for meditation, healing, stress relief, muscle recovery, anxiety relief, PTSD, better sleep, and much more. While these tanks have been around for a while, the “float community” has been on the rise in recent years as the health benefits become clearer.
How did you get into this line of work?
Before we were Float Pod manufacturers, we were Float Spa owners. At the time, the float community was very small and the products and service options were even smaller.
After running a Float Spa and figuring out all the things wrong with the pods, we decided to create our own pods. The pods we developed had the customer and spa owner in mind and included many features we wished we had, and Float Pod Technologies was born.
My housemate, Nick.
In college, the owner Nick Janicki (my roommate) became interested in meditation and spirituality. Nick started practising meditation and became a student of it. Being a curious person, he investigated the topic further and came across sensory deprivation and floating.
Sometime later, he flew to Europe because there were few Float Pods in the USA at this time. There, he tried floating and fell in love with it. Years after this, he decided to get into the industry and opened True Rest, his first float spa.
I was an initial investor, supporter, and fan of the company. I watched the industry and Nick's passion grow. We stayed in touch over the years discussing the business side of things and an opportunity arose for me to step into Float Pod as CEO to take over and help push the company forward, allowing Nick to focus on True Rest Franchising.
What is the best thing about working the business of sensory deprivation?
The greatest thing about selling and manufacturing float pods is it’s a product that actually helps people. People with chronic pain feel relief, people who are stressed or have high anxiety can find stillness in their mind, soldiers with PTSD are using our products and finding benefits, MMA fighters are using it for muscle recovery, and the list goes on and on.
It makes me feel great as a human to be helping and advancing products and a culture that creates a positive impact on people's lives. Not everyone can say that about their product, but we can, and it feels amazing.
At the end of the day, seeing the evidence that our efforts are making the world a better place is why I know I’ve landed in a fulfilling career.
What are the biggest struggles you face in this industry?
Educating customers and business owners on the product. It’s still a new industry and while the general awareness has increased dramatically over the last few years, it’s not quite a household thing yet.
Outside of that, the industry itself is rapidly changing, and new competition has been created. Because of this, we are all collectively raising the bar of what the float industry is by creating better products to meet the demands of our customers and their customers.
Where do see the future of your field in 10 years? 20? 30?
Although floating or sensory deprivation has been around for many years, it’s popularity is really starting to grow, specifically in the USA. Alternative health treatments, meditation and spirituality as a whole are booming industries. I think we have just scratched the surface in the float industry.
Is it time for you to float?
In 10 years, I believe floating will be as common as getting a massage and we will see its numerous benefits unfold even more over time. In the long term, I think this is a practice in which people will find lifetime value.
With the ever-increasing use of technology in our lives, having a space to go and “isolate” yourself and your mind from all the distractions, even if only for an hour, will be a commodity in our future culture.
As science and meditation practices teach us more about the mind and body, I imagine the experience provided and benefits of the float industry will grow and adapt right alongside them, helping individuals reach their personal potentials.
Entrepreneur Editors' Picks
These Co-Founders Are Using 'Quiet Confidence' to Flip the Script on Cutthroat Startup Culture and Make Their Mark on a $46 Billion Industry
My 7-Year-Old Daughter Started Selling Eggs. Here's What She Taught Me About Running a Startup.
Why You Need to Become an Inclusive Leader (and How to Do It)
Career Transitions You Can Make in Your 40s and 50s
Billionaire Naveen Jain Is an Expert at Disrupting Fields He Has No Experience In. His Secret Sauce for Building Multi-Million Dollar Companies? 'You Have to Come as Naive.'
4 Principles to Develop Next-Level Leadership at Your Company
This Filipino American Founder Is Disrupting the Beverage Aisle by Introducing New Flavors to the Crowded Bubbly Water Market