Many elements must be dialed in to perform well on the basketball court. Successful athletes need physical health and wellness, mental clarity, resiliency, determination, and drive to reach their goals, but even the best of the best can't do it alone.
That's where Greater Purpose Athletics and the newly launched Greater Purpose Management comes into play. Founder Jonte Wells designed a state-of-the-art, multi-sport training facility in Schaumburg, Illinois, to help athletes reach their ultimate potential. Not only is Greater Purpose Athletics the place to be for high-level training, but it's now offering management services to help young athletes with finances, legal matters, post-career plans, and much more.
When asked about the inspiration for Greater Purpose Management, Wells says it comes down to supporting local athletes so they can thrive, even in unfamiliar territory. Managing young athletes is something he has wanted to do for a long time, and it's been a big year as the organization blossomed.
“It started with me just having an athlete background, knowing a lot of athletes, what they grow through, and what they need help with on a day-to-day basis,” Wells said.
The Greater Purpose management team lets the sports agents handle contract negotiations, but all of the daily career advising, brand management, and on-court performance is left up to the managers. They walk athletes and their family members through every step of their careers. These talent management specialists make sure elite basketballers understand their financial assets, legal rights, and post-career options.
Wells and his team also offer brand management, helping athletes grow their personal brand through authentic partnerships and a strong social media presence, with the end goal of making a positive impact in their community. Of course, on-court performance is another priority, with athletes receiving extensive training resources and a personalized plan for the pre-draft training process.
Fitness and Marketing Talent Managers on a Mission
Long before Greater Purpose Athletics was a reality, Wells was a young Windy City kid finding peace on the basketball court. Fast forward to today, and the serial entrepreneur and sports fanatic is no stranger to hard work, whether it's in the gym or the office. With his knowledge of business, health, and fitness, he's so excited to lead Chicago's premier athletic talent management agency, a privilege and opportunity he doesn't take lightly.
"Being where I come from and being so young, I can relate to these people and the needs of these players a lot better. That's the feedback I have been getting," Wells said.
Having grown up in inner-city Chicago where safe sporting facilities were hard to come by, he understands how there can be a lot going on in the background for young kids and athletes, whether they are just starting out or trying to make it big. Between trying to stay safe and keep out of trouble, to making the right choices for themselves and their families, athletes often have a lot on their minds. Then there are the physical requirements of pushing their bodies to the limit, and the need to pour their heart and soul into their beloved sport in hopes it pays off.
Under Wells' leadership, Greater Purpose Management is helping athletes navigate and overcome all these possible impediments to find success on the court and in life. He wants athletes with limited access to facilities to have a safe space to come and train, as sports kept him out of trouble as a kid and he wants to share that with his community. He also acknowledges that COVID was hard for kids in inner cities, and how giving athletes an outlet to train and receive trusted management at the same time can make a massive difference.
"Athlete management is a huge part of everything that I'm doing, and this is something that I think has the potential to be really big."
Wells also explains how Greater Purpose Athletics and Management were designed not as money grabs, but rather with a bigger purpose to help kids grow. It's a true family dynamic where trainers interact with all athletes, creating a team environment with a focus on staying positive, finding ways to overcome adversity, and always giving it a shot. In a world where everyone's trying to get noticed and stay on top of the game, the Greater Purpose team is making it happen.
"Out of these players, they're in today's game, they're trying to do their Instagram, they're trying to build their social media, they're trying to build their own personal brands. So that's what we'll be focusing on," Wells said.
Managing Athlete Opportunities and Expectations
Wells says his athletic background has strengthened him as an entrepreneur and helped him bring unique ideas to life, especially when it comes to training and managing the next generation of basketball stars. After dealing with ups and downs throughout his childhood and adult life, he wants athletes to learn at an early age that they can never get too low and can always bounce back.
A basketball guy through and through, one thing Wells knows is the criticism athletes can face for their performance, especially as they rise the ranks through high school, college, and beyond. That's why Greater Purpose talent managers focus on helping athletes build a thick skin to handle criticism and turn it into a positive. It's all part of their personalized approach to athlete management.
"Athletes say our service is very hands-on, as we communicate with them daily to make sure they're happy," Wells said.
At the end of the day, Wells wants Greater Purpose athletes to know they are in good hands, both from a management and a business perspective. In addition to GPA, Wells is a real estate entrepreneur who flips houses year-round. He also owns two Sugaring NYC organic waxing franchises in Lincoln Park and South Elgin. While his training facility and management business has grown quickly with athletes coming from all over Chicago, he couldn't be more grateful or excited to serve ambitious athletes.
"We're trying to do everything in the day that our athletes ask of us - we're not just putting it off on the back end," Wells said. "We are so small right now, they are getting a ton of attention, and I think they appreciate that."
Building a Bright Future for Basketballers
The business itself may be new, but the passion for supporting athletes and the community has always been there. In the next five years, Greater Purpose Management hopes to build their memberships, something they are on track to meet as they strive for statewide recognition. By filling in a gap where a lot of other agencies just focus on contract negotiations, anything is possible for these young athletes.
"With the new rules for NCAA athletes on the name image likeness, college athletes can now have representation, which is a huge area we're going to tap into as well. We'll be helping athletes get an income of their own with their name, image, and likeness," Wells said. "So once that became official, that's when I knew it was time to officially get out there and launch it."