While not directly connected to his education at The University of Winnipeg, music has long been an important part of Mack Borys’ life.
Not only was it integral to getting through his studies, but something that has provided him motivation, solace, and so much more. Now, as Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Musician Guidance, the recent UWinnipeg grad is using his business savvy and marketing expertise to ensure musicians can share their talents with the widest possible audience.
Borys, who graduated from UWinnipeg in 2022 with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing, launched the service in early 2021 with the goal of helping artists go from hobbyists and part-time dream-chasers to full-time musicians. Musician Guidance provides users with one-on-one mentoring, connections with music experts, and opportunities to learn directly from industry figures, including coaches, songwriters, and producers who have worked with stars such as BTS, the Jonas Brothers, and Britney Spears.
“Knowing how many scams are out there in the music industry, and how many artists fall into them or fail due to reasons they can avoid, is something that pained me,” Borys said, “and something I wanted to set out and solve.”
Already, too, Musician Guidance is seeing success. Among its highlights are helping artists land recording contracts, reach the million-stream mark on music platforms, and score opportunities to work alongside certifiable stars. Musician Guidance mentors have likewise assisted in the career of the winner of singing competition The Voice UK. But Borys is also enthused about the smaller-scale successes, such as helping artists land their first paid gigs in which they perform their original music.
For his part, much of Borys’ work is behind the scenes. Whereas the musically inclined mentors work directly with the artists, Borys is relentlessly working to find new partnerships and opportunities for collaboration that can expand the resources artists have at their disposal.
That’s not just limited to chatting with industry bigwigs, either. It also means diving into technological tools that have potential to be game changers for musicians. It’s in those day-to-day pursuits Borys most often draws on what he learned at UWinnipeg, particularly given the collaborative nature of much of his classwork and assignments.
“(It) pushed me out of my comfort zone, to talk to people, build connections, and grow a network,” Borys said. “When I look back on that, it’s that self-growth in regard to networking that UWinnipeg helped me grow into, which has proven to be extremely beneficial for myself in my professional career.”
Borys’ understanding of how to work within a team to achieve a goal was clear in winning the 2020 Virtual Hackathon alongside teammates Francine Camia and Justin Baldwin. But, it’s also a skill that was fostered and nurtured repeatedly through the community feel on campus.
Borys is quick to point out the effort professors, especially, put into forming bonds with students, be it by way of making themselves available before and after class or stopping to chat while walking the halls. Before arriving at UWinnipeg, he had been told to expect such an environment and, in part, it was what drew him to the University. Experiencing it firsthand – and the way he puts those skills to use now – confirmed he had made the right choice.
“The community at UWinnipeg is second to none, and as someone who is not overly talkative or outgoing, I was still able to form great relationships,” he said. “I really take pride in that, because if business taught me anything, it is that relationships are everything – literally everything.”