Mike Goldberg: A Foundation for Success
By James Florence, Diamond Certified Resource Reporter
CAMPBELL — As second-generation owner of Lawrence Flooring & Interiors, Mike Goldberg was able to create a successful livelihood by expanding upon the foundation originally laid by his father. “My father, Larry, started this business in 1971,” he says. “As a teenager, I started working for the business during the summer, both on the flooring side as an apprentice with the carpeting crews and on the furniture side as a delivery assistant. Later, while attending UCLA, I worked for a floor covering store, where I was able to utilize and expand my industry knowledge and experience.”
After finishing college, Mike remained in Los Angeles and started working for a large flooring store. However, it wasn’t long before the call of opportunity drew him homeward. “My father’s business was growing, and he asked if I’d be interested in coming back and working at the store,” he recounts. “It took a little convincing, but I decided it was worth a shot and packed my bags. More than 30 years later, I’m still here.”
Today, Mike says his favorite part of his job is staying at the forefront of his professional field. “As new products come out, they require different forms of installation, so the industry is in a constant state of development. It’s challenging to keep up, but it also keeps things fun and interesting.” Mike also takes pride in being part of Lawrence Flooring & Interiors’ local legacy. “After more than 45 years in business, we’re getting a lot of second-generation customers—people whose parents shopped here when they were growing up. It makes me feel good when someone tells me, ‘We’re so glad you’re still here!’”
Originally from Campbell, Mike resides today in Los Gatos with his wife, Kristine, where he appreciates the cutting-edge character of the Silicon Valley. “It’s a very exciting place to live,” he affirms. “These days, as the high-tech industry continues to expand, things are moving at a much faster pace than they were 30 years ago, so it keeps me moving along at a pretty good pace to keep up.”
Outside of work, Mike engages in a variety of activities, from fitness training to reading. “I spend a fair amount of my off-time working out, whether it’s cycling, running or lifting weights,” he says. “I’m also a skier, so, weather permitting, I like to hit the slopes when I can. At home, I enjoy sitting on our deck and reading a good book, as well as playing with our dog, Sarah. Over the years, we’ve gotten our dogs from the local animal shelter, which I’ve found to be very rewarding.”
Mike also likes keeping up with his and Kristine’s two grown children, both of whom are following their own respective career paths. “My daughter is currently attending the University of San Francisco, where she is in the Nursing School with plans to pursue her Doctorate as a Nurse Practitioner,” he says. “My son is majoring in aerospace engineering at Cal Poly. During the summers, he comes home and works in our warehouse, which is a big help and a lot of fun.”
In his life and career, Mike espouses the importance of maintaining good relationships. “In addition to hard work, healthy relationships are critical in business,” he explains. “This includes relationships with your fellow employees, vendors and subcontractors as well as your customers. All of these are very important to us, and I think that’s a big part of why we’re pushing 50 years in business.”
When asked the first thing he’d do if he were to retire tomorrow, Mike says he’d do some traveling. “I’ve been fortunate to do a fair amount of traveling in my life, but there are still a lot of places I’d like to see. I also look forward to watching my children pursue their own careers. They’re great kids—they work hard and care about people, and I can’t wait to see how their futures unfold.”
Ask Me Anything!
Q: What’s one book you’ve found particularly influential?
A: “Freakonomics” by Stephen J. Dubner and Steven Levitt. It’s a fascinating book that explores the wide-ranging impact of past economic events.
Q: What was the name of your first pet?
A: My parents had a little poodle that was aptly named Fifi.
Q: What’s your favorite local restaurant?
A: Aldo’s Ristorante & Bar in Los Gatos.
Q: What’s your favorite holiday?
A: The Fourth of July—without it, we wouldn’t be here today.
Q: How do you like your eggs?