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Meet Lisa Goodman of Washington Park Chiropractic

Today we’d like to introduce you to Lisa Goodman.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
My path to entrepreneurship started as a desire to be a health care provider and help people become a stronger version of themselves. Over the last 13 years that has transpired to employing a dozen amazing people in Wash Park and connecting with the most tight-knit community, I could have imagined. And I did imagine it. My husband and I often reminisce about the day, 15 years ago when I wrote my first business plan as a class project. It included a vision of a multidisciplinary health care office in a close-knit community, with brick walls, earth-toned paint and patients who ran into friends and family in the waiting room. Some of my classmates didn’t take this project seriously, I often wonder what their practices look like. I grew up dreaming of becoming a medical doctor to help people. I realized after undergraduate school at the University of Miami that I could be more help to people as a holistic doctor rather than an allopathic medical physician. My mentor was a successful, strong, optimistic, mother and business owner in downtown San Francisco. I looked no further, chiropractic was my future. In 2006 I graduated as valedictorian of my class at Palmer College of Chiropractic West in San Jose, California. Prior to chiropractic school, I spend four years as a Media Planner at Goodby, Silverstein and Partners in SF, an experience which I am infinitely grateful for. As first careers go, I highly recommend working at an advertising agency that specializes in branding. In October 2006, Washington Park Chiropractic was born in a tiny, unremarkable office with brick walls and earth-toned paint in an intimate community that supported and grew us to what we are today.

We’re always bombarded by how great it is to pursue your passion, etc – but we’ve spoken with enough people to know that it’s not always easy. Overall, would you say things have been easy for you?
Depending on the day I would answer this different ways. The real answer is that the road has a lot of bumps and struggles. However, something happens when you are doing it for yourself. Every challenge that arises needs a solution, and often fast. This leads to several ‘jump off the cliff’ moments. Meaning you have to trust your research, your advisors and your gut. I had a few of those moments I’ll remember forever. The first is when I couldn’t get a bank loan (without five years experience owning a business), so I opened a business with a $5,000 credit card line and hoped I’d be making enough revenue to pay my $900/month rent in three months. Another unique challenge to being a female entrepreneur is that I had my first child 13 months after opening my business. My second child was born just after expanding to our new (and current) location. I was resourceful enough to bring both of my babies to work with me for several months – who has that option?! Aside from getting the business off the ground, there have been countless challenges along the way. There is a huge difference from being a one-practitioner office to an employer of multiple people who rely on you. Its basically like you multiply all of things you need by 10 and handle all of that on a daily basis. I love almost every second of it, but there are very significant challenges and responsibilities that show up when you least expect them.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Washington Park Chiropractic story. Tell us more about the business.
As was my goal, our practice specializes in sports injury, pediatrics, and prenatal care. We have evolved from a chiropractic practice into a holistic practice incorporating in equal parts elite acupuncture, massage and nutrition all supporting our founding specialties and principals. Our growth and character is entirely due to our patient community requesting more. We listened to our patients and we responded. In addition, I attend 2-3 professional conferences per year and bring back new technology, new practice guidelines and new knowledge that we incorporate into the practice. I am proud that we stay consistent, and continue to evolve. Our patients know that we will always offer the most cutting-edge treatments available within our scope of practice. We also have an extensive network of medial and holistic specialists we can reach out to (instantly, via text!) if we need to for our patients. I am also humbled and proud that pediatricians, midwives, obstetricians, neurosurgeons and our chiropractic colleagues in Denver refer patients to us for comprehensive, profession and compassionate care. It is stunning to me that our medical community is so inclusive for the best interest of our patients. I travel around the country, and trust me, we are a special and unique community.

Has luck played a meaningful role in your life and business?
Luck. What an interesting word. It is a word that many people use to refer to people who have had success. If I could tell you how many times someone has said how ‘lucky’ I am. The answer is zero. Hard work = success. Not luck. If things fall in your favor, its because of hard work. Hard work now, hard work ten years ago, it all pays off. Luck, no.

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