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Welcome to the Lab

Where you get to study the most important subject matter there is….yourself.

While we have plenty of experience both coaching and being coached, the goal of Growth Makers Lab is to create a cooperative community where we can support each other in removing the blockers between our present self and our best lives.

Life can be like a laboratory, and we benefit by becoming scientists and approaching ourselves with intellectual curiosity as well as compassion. With GML, you’ll be able to look at yourself as you are now, as you were in the past, in your moments of glory and your moments of guilt and shame and find value in all versions of you. Not only that, you’ll develop acceptance and gratitude toward your past self.

The GML process isn’t meant to be started and completed, but rather cycled through over and over as you navigate decision-making moments in your life, career, and relationships. The community element provides the essential perspectives and accountability necessary to keeping you on track. 

Though it isn’t a hard and fast rule, we believe that most of our blockers occur in one of these four domains:

  • Mind
  • Emotion
  • Body
  • Vocation

As a result, these domains are the core pillars of the GML process.

Richard Mara

CEO, Co-Founder, and Executive Coach

Richard Marra is a Corporate Executive with over 25 years of experience in the digital healthcare industry. He holds both an MBA and a Masters in Healthcare Administration from Benedictine University as well as a Bachelor’s in Healthcare Administration from Southern Illinois University. Richard holds numerous professional certifications, including the Executive Leadership Program at Purdue University, Lean Six Sigma Black Belt, and is a licensed Financial Services & Life Insurance Agent.

Richard has coached over 100 clients from Fortune 500 companies like LinkedIn, Gilead, and Marriott. From his personal encounter exposed to secondary trauma growing up, his own personal self-worth issues, and to his many years of coaching experience that included executives, front-line employees, and individuals, he has guided many through periods of self-doubt and sabotage in order to attain countless outstanding results. 

Richard is married to Robyn and blessed to have three amazing daughters, two dogs and enjoys living in Texas.

Christopher Goff

Co-Founder and Executive Coach

Christopher Goff is a speaker, author, and advisor on the subjects of Sales Operations and Compensation. He is currently pursuing his MBA from Rasmussen University and holds a Master’s degree in Economics from North Carolina State University, and a B.S. in Finance from Catawba College. He is also the author of three books and is the Senior Director, Sales Compensation at Labcorp.

Christopher lost an astounding 133lbs during the pandemic and has continued to keep it off because of the alignment development he pursued with his mentor Richard Marra.

Christopher is married to the love of his life, Tonya. They live in Raleigh, NC, with their puppy Gracey.

Read Our Stories

How We Got Where We Are and How We Can Help You Get There Too

Rich’s Story: My Personal B.S.

How do you measure success?  I’m told I’m successful.  I did all the things I was supposed to do.  Go to school, get an education, get a job and live happily ever after.  Fast forward 20 years and I felt empty.  I checked all the boxes, had great corporate jobs, career growth, and a beautiful  family.  That is how many measure success in life.  I did it because that was a “social measuring stick” to measure success.  But as the emptiness got bigger, imposter syndrome and depression set in. It caused me to go backwards in my career and in my life.  Knowing that there had to be more to life, I read countless self-help books, watched Ted Talks, went to self-help seminars,  listened to hundreds of hours of self-improvement podcasts.  Some small changes did occur but not enough to outweigh the devastating feeling of losing in life. Regret occupied my mind to a level that created shame and guilt.  The lowest levels of energy that actually cause health problems and disease (dis-ease)…I could not face my family because I felt that I had failed them.  Fortunately, I did not have to deal with any serious disease that would make turning this situation around even harder,  

Finally, after being forced to make changes for fear of things getting worse in life with bad consequences, I discovered how my personal B.S. or belief system was holding me back.  After several self-improvement techniques, I found my own breakthrough that catapulted me two levels higher in my career with over a $100K increase in salary in two months.  More importantly, my kids got to see their Dad happy again which is priceless.  From that turning point forward, I knew my calling was coaching to help others transform their lives and I knew I had a combination of professional business experience, executive and individual coaching experience, and real hardened-by-life personal experience that together can radically change businesses, leadership, and peoples lives. 

You can’t copy others’ path to success.  You must find your own journey.  It’s a journey worth taking and sometimes in life you don’t get the option to quit and you must face your fears and situation head on.  No degree, education, or prayer group can get you through it.  It is an inside job and your own path is required.

All of this is to say:  I am an alchemist. I’ve been where you are, I’ve arrived at where you’re going, and I want to help you get there.  I’ve turned my mess into my message and I am eager to help others transform one belief at a time. 

I took the content I was sharing with my clients and turned inward – I applied all my coaching concepts to my own life.   I don’t claim to help people create success. This is not a rah-rah hard charging program.  Rather, what makes my approach different is instead of trying to force clients into success, I remove their barriers to get them aligned with success based on a proven process.

Forever an avid student of personal development, Rich’s core mission is to bring expanded awareness & higher consciousness to as many people as possible, and to find greater ways of helping leaders and individuals make a bigger impact, so they can lead their greatest possible lives and serve the greatest number of people using principles and trainings based in neuroscience, transformational psychology, and the Laws of the Universe.

Chris’ Story: How My Life Changed Because of an Airplane Seatbelt

I was 428.8lbs. I recognized the way I felt in my own body and wanted something different. I had been successful, to a degree, with diets and exercise, going through cycles of losing over 60lbs before gaining it all back, as so many have experienced. 

Then I joined a group that met weekly and was focused on support. Over time I came to understand that so much of how I got to where I was at that peak was related to my thoughts and emotions. I also started to focus simply on the acts of awareness and allowance. That translated into dealing with my perfectionism, acknowledging my relationship with food and various eating tendencies, pursuing deliberate physical movement without judgment or expectation, and so much more. 

One of the focuses that I especially recall is my desire to be more comfortable when I travel–specifically on a plane. And for me that meant not needing a seat belt extender. For those of you that require one of those, you know what I mean. It’s an embarrassing play that requires calling the flight attendant and announcing loudly that you are too big for the seat belt and you need something special in order to follow regulations. 

What I didn’t realize when I put that as an objective of my weightloss journey was that I was manifesting this future experience. I attracted the feeling of comfort and space into my life through weight loss. And I didn’t have to wait until I met my weight loss goals to begin feeling more comfortable traveling. My objective also translated into accessible first class seats as well. I didn’t realize until recently that I’ve been flying exclusively first class since that time. What I did was attract to myself the thoughts of comfort and space, and how it manifested was through width, length, and location on the plane.