Burr Ridge native Patrick Yanahan says that after hanging out with his senior citizen friends at spin class or the gym, he became something of an “information vacuum cleaner” of articles focused about the needs of retirees and aging Baby Boomers. Whether you called this group the “silver tsunami” or the “coming generational storm,” the seniors he met all had one thing in common—in addition to the normal health issues that come with aging, these people became isolated from their children and others. This prompted an epiphany for Yanahan, who built on his knowledge to launch Silver Companions. The West Suburban business filled a niche in the senior care market that was not being met—providing a personalized range of services that include anything from help with a computer or smart phone to joyful and stimulating outings. “I have been really shocked by the overwhelmingly positive response we get from clients, their families, nurses, doctors, social workers, and retirement communities locally,” he says. “We bring joy, humor, and intellectual stimulation into the daily lives of people who might otherwise feel isolated.” Here are some of this forward-thinking entrepreneur’s lasts:
1. Great book you read that inspired your work?
There is a very humorous business book I read by Scott Adams titled How to Fail at Almost Everything and Still Win Big. That hit home with me as far as attributing success to learning a lot by trying, not necessarily succeeding, the first time.
2. Sage piece of advice you received from a client?
One of my senior clients said something to me recently that resonated: “Try to carve out something fun to do every day whether its singing a song, calling a friend, or going for a 10-minute walk. You’ll always feel better.” That made a lot of sense.
3. Small moment that provided the inspiration for your business?
When my nursing friends said, “Go, go, go, and do this business now. The writing is on the wall. Plus, we don’t want you talking about this idea at your retirement party 25 years from now and give us a pounding headache.”
4. Amazing vacation you’ll never forget?
I took my father to Ireland and Germany for his 75th birthday last month and it was a blast. The people, food, and scenery were amazing. It was a once in a lifetime, epic father-son bonding trip with lots of mini-adventures along the way. I’ll never forget it and neither will he.
5. Impulse decision that you’ll never regret?
Sharing with my family and my work colleagues that I was going to launch Silver Companions and once that was spoken, I knew that the was no turning back. Call it determination, finality, or whatever. Plus, I was hoping they would take me out to dinner on their dime for once to celebrate the commitment.
Headquartered in Wheaton, Silver Companions serves clients in Hinsdale, Burr Ridge, Oak Brook, and surrounding communities. For more information, call 630-877-4882 or visit silver-companions.com.