Jason Stein | Crain's Portland

In this ongoing series, we ask executives, entrepreneurs and business leaders about mistakes that have shaped their business philosophy.

Jason Stein


Jason Stein believes that the foundation of any successful business is built upon a healthy balance in the areas of profit, relationships, and impact. One of the ways he helps to establish this balance is through his mindfulness presentation, "Meditation in the Workplace," which has been used by some of the top employers in the Pacific Northwest.

The Mistake:

In the late ‘90s, I was a primary care physician in New Mexico, under the guise of Chinese medicine. Not long after graduating and getting my official license, I was thrown into a hospital setting, seeing patients who were incredibly stressed out. I quickly learned that the majority of their stress was coming directly from their workplace.

This was a pinnacle moment in my practice: realizing that people were getting ill from the place they spent most of their time.

That got my wheels turning. I enjoyed interacting with my patients much more than sticking needles in them. Combine that with the fact that I'm a third-generation entrepreneur, and the decision to become a business coach almost made itself.

Often my clients are so overwhelmed they aren’t moving in a focused direction.

The Lesson:

I started coaching small-business owners. I wanted to show them a way of doing business that didn’t lead to the same type of burnout I was seeing in the hospital. Most of them were doing cookie-cutter training. My training as an acupuncturist taught me that everyone has individual needs.

Often my clients are so overwhelmed they aren’t moving in a focused direction. If I could get them to slow down, I was not only helping them with business consulting, I was also able to help them with life balance. After that, it was pretty easy to move some metrics, generate more revenue, as well as implement some self-care strategies.

In the beginning, I used a lot of the materials and processes I amassed in school; an initial consultation with balance charts to identify their top three priorities. From there, I would use my resources as a wellness provider and entrepreneur to pinpoint the simplest step forward as we moved from session to session.

Over time, I learned to educate the client up front that the progress would happen, but it would take time to put all the pieces into place. From this I developed my six-month PRI (Profits, Relationships, and Impact) program.  

Being a business owner can be extremely challenging. You’re wearing multiple hats, trying to stay on top of the constantly changing landscape of 21st century business, all while feeding yourself and your family.

The best thing you can do is get the support and accountability needed to continue moving forward with consistency. It’s not always easy, but with slow and steady intention, I can help business owners maintain the focus necessary to accomplish anything they are bold enough to imagine.

Follow Jason Stein on Twitter at: @IMJasonStein

Pictured: Jason Stein | Photo courtesy of Jason Stein


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