Stephen Davis, a serial entrepreneur, venture capitalist, seasoned inventor and healthcare pioneer, has a deep passion for mission-driven companies and organizations that seek to promote social good and greater access for all. After a number of family members were diagnosed with Lyme Disease, Davis began to research treatment options with little success. During his search for a solution, he began working with Stuart Gross at Waveforce, where they had already developed prototype devices that used frequencies delivered via light emitting technology. FREmedica was incorporated in 2016 by Waveforce Electronics for the purpose of launching wearable technology designed to help people struggling with a variety of health issues including Lyme disease.
How has your business changed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic?
SD: As most businesses, one had to shift how we approach the market. We were helping a lot of people overcome Lyme disease by going and sharing a story of hope to Lyme support groups. This was a strategic approach for us. Today, that has been challenging as we find it harder to get into the online Lyme support groups. Our mission has not changed as it is our goal to help as many people get their lives back.
What is your proudest and darkest moment so far? Share a key high and a key low from your journey if you can.
SD: My high moment is getting my family back. Watching my daughter and her sons flourish was the goal. That was enough for me if I would have stopped at that point. I am a hero to my daughter and that feeling trumps all things. The low point for me is knowing that millions of people are struggling with a debilitating disease when there is a non-evasive solution that has been developed for them. Reaching these people is hard but we will continue to help one person at a time.
How is your company changing the landscape?
SD: If people give us a chance to help them, we will. We can help them in many areas to get their life back to the way it once was. We have put together a team of doctors to help us create frequency packages for a number of health issues.
What do you wish you knew when you started? Is there anything you would do differently?
SD: I wish I would have known how difficult the marketplace was to penetrate. Not sure what I could have done differently other than getting a little more aggressive in market penetration. We know if you enroll in our 90 day program you will advance in life, but it does take some time to get into a better place with your health.
What advice/credo do you live by as you grow the business / what is your professional and personal mission statement?
SD: One of the things I share with my team is that we must have grace for one another. In fact, I suggest they put on grace grease because sooner or later we will rub one another the wrong way. We need to know that this is not our heart towards one another it is just sometimes we need to push through a project which can create friction. Having grace in these situations builds relationships as your company is only as good as the people you have building it.
Where do you find inspiration when faced with challenges?
SD: I am a man of faith and when in doubt I take a pause and get re-centered on what is important which keeps me grounded.
What does “success” look like for you? What do you think will help you achieve it?
SD: Success in my book is every time we get a testimony on how we helped someone overcome the symptoms of Lyme disease with the usage of FREmedica’s WAVE 1 device. This affects our families, our friends, our communities and our workplace. That screams out success to me. The best way to achieve this is having people with Lyme disease take a chance with us to help them.
Has personal or professional “success” changed for you since the COVID-19 pandemic?
SD: I think our success as a company has been hindered by COVID-19 as we can’t get face to face in a live environment to share our story of hope. This is changing.
What’s it like to work alone or with your partners? What advice do you have for fellow entrepreneurs about building and leading teams?
SD: I am satisfied working alone or in groups. In today’s environment with COVID-19, I find it a little more challenging with our teams as we are relational at our core and that has been compromised. One thing I try to do when on a zoom call with my teams is push for all cameras on so we can see each other when we are meeting. It does not matter how they are dressed or how they look. Overall, I feel it has a positive affect when we are able to see one another smile.
Many entrepreneurs continue to perfect their daily routines to support their work and greater vision; would you mind sharing your morning routine or a regular ritual that grounds your work each day? How has it changed in recent months?
SD: In the morning I try to remind myself of what is important. I take a look at my world and then decide how best to enter it. I find if I just jump right into my days they don’t stop until late into the evening. I try and take a 5 to 10 minute pause between calls or meetings just to get grounded and to make sure I don’t bring feelings from a previous call into the next one. Today, I find that I have to be so intentional in finding down time which we all need.
What keeps you motivated during this time?
SD: My motivation is simple. People are sick with Lyme disease and the number of cases continues to grow out of control. People with Lyme disease are usually financially strapped as they have spent all they have trying to get their lives back. We know we can help them so we continue to push forward on their behalf. Our whole team feels this way.
What kind of an entrepreneur do you want to be known as, as in, what do you want your legacy to be?
SD: I would like people to say, “this man cares for people and did everything in his power to help people live life to the fullest, particularly people with Lyme disease.” My legacy is my family and that they continue to care for the ones that struggle in life. If you’re able to help, “HELP.”
Have you experienced mentorship in your career? Do you feel it was easily available to you?
SD: I think the best mentors have been watching other entrepreneurs work out their passions which is very seldom driven by money. They are driven by doing good in the world.
Who are the people who have mentored or influenced you in your life or career? How has their influence changed the trajectory of your entrepreneurial journey?
SD: Well first is my faith. Without faith I am not sure if I could find balance in my life. The other person who helps me stay on track or get back on track is my wife. She inspires me in low moments and encourages my successes. There are many other ways that I get mentored, but these two areas are where I always go first.
What is a quote or some words of wisdom that help get you through the tough days?
SD: For me, I simply take a pause in my day. Most times, I will pause several times in a day. The purpose is to stop, get re-grounded in my “WHY” and know what I am doing is for the benefit of others that don’t have the means to help themselves. That gets me going through the tough days and the good days.
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