Entrepreneurship

Richard Galvan and Sonia Galvan on the Entrepreneurial Spirit and Maintaining a Solid Work-Life Balance

Richard Galvan and Sonia Galvan are entrepreneurs from Rio Grande Valley, Texas. They own and operate G5 Internet Services, delivering high-speed internet and streaming services to residential, commercial, and state and local governments.

Richard Galvan attended colleges throughout central and south Texas playing baseball. He eventually completed his degree at the University of Texas. In 1994, he started his first job at Dell, sparking his passion for technology. Within 10 years of working for the company, he had travelled to almost every country in Latin America as a regional account manager.

Tragedy brought Richard Galvan And Sonia Galvan together when Richard’s grandfather died. Sonia’s family owned and operated Rudy Garza Funeral Home and Richard met Sonia as she was typing information for his grandfather. The couple just celebrated their 20-year anniversary, surrounded by their three children.

Richard Galvan and Sonia Galvan launched G5 Internet Services in 2008. By delivering high-speed internet service wirelessly, G5 uses point to point and point to multipoint technology. This eliminates the costs for tierra fiber and or cable as well as the segmented cost associated with over head fiber on telephone poles. G5 can deliver internet to customers within a seven-mile radius and has a plan for all level of customers. G5 Internet Services’ motto, “Where together we stay connected” has meaning, driving the company’s initiatives, direction, and purpose.

As engaged members of the community, Richard Galvan and Sonia Galvan support local, state, and international non-profit organizations. Most recently, they showed support for a battered women’s shelter in Nicaragua. They have served on numerous boards, directed local events, and sponsored many local activities. Sonia Galvan has served as a board member for Pregnancy Testing Center, a local, non-profit center for women that are pregnant. Richard Galvan has served as vice president for the City of Mercedes Economic Development Corporation for six years, FCA, and president for his local country club, and, until the pandemic hit, served on a cohort to build a new joint educational facility with Harlingen ISD and the University of Texas RGV.

Why did you decide to create your own business?

I’ve always had the entrepreneurial spirit. I had some horrible managers and learned from them to be the type of leader that I wanted to be by not doing what they did basically. I started off my entrepreneurial ventures by launching a hard drive repair business in 2006. For me it was always about both what I was doing for myself and what I was doing for others.

What keeps you motivated?

At the end of the day, my family is and will always be what keeps me motivated. We are building a business and a legacy for the next generation: our children, grandchildren, and so on. We are also in a unique situation where in addition to caring for our children, we are also caring for our parents because as family, it is what you do. You have to make your time with your family count.

Where do you get your inspiration from?

My parents, who have both always been hardworking, inspire me. While they came from humble beginnings, my father when to law school and my mother holds a doctorate degree in education. They put themselves through law school and were still able to build a family and provide for us. They taught me what resilience looks like.

How do you maintain a solid work-life balance?

For us, it was important to make a work-life balance a business value rather than leaving it up to the individual. While the internet never closes, we have always made our work hours Monday to Friday, 9 to 5, for all of our employees. If you build a work-life balance into company culture, it normalizes it.

What suggestions do you have for someone starting in your industry?

A lot of business owners are afraid to lose money when launching a business. While I get that this can be a real fear, money is a tool that is used to build your company. By spending a little more at the onset of your company, your build will be stronger and you’ll have more resources.

What is one piece of advice that you have never forgotten?

While the market and economy fluctuates, there is and will always be work, it just depends if you want to do it. Rather than making excuses, put in the work and don’t be afraid of it. As well, work is a part of life that shouldn’t be categorized by your work hours. Your work will be meaningful if you give it meaning. If you spend your days complaining about it endlessly, it will always be a chore. Make it count for something by setting goals in your professional life and achieving them.

What’s one piece of advice you would give to others?

A closed hand is only for holding. An open hand allows for giving and receiving.