So you want to launch a wellness company? Great.
Since founding Innerfit in 2016, I’ve realised that owning a business means ultimate responsibility. I’ve realised that it means seeing both sides. I’ve realised that it means dichotomy.
That is why the lessons shared always come with the opposite; a counter of equal importance: part 2 shares lessons 5-10 I’ve learned since launching my own fitness business.
Plan Ahead and Be Flexible
If you have ever hired a Personal Trainer, your programme will likely have been built by mapping out where you are today vs. where you want to get to. The same applies in business.
Since leaving the pool to co-found Neat Nutrition, Lee Forster has used goal-setting to scale the sports nutrition company with great success.
The discipline and planning engrained from years representing GB Swimming transcended into his business style. Yet Lee also acknowledges the need to be flexible and enjoy the ride: “Starting a business is a fantastically rewarding adventure with many up’s and down’s. One thing I definitely always look at it trying to enjoy the journey more and fixate less on a destination.”
Flexibility was also picked out as being essential by Personal Trainer Flo Seabright. Balancing dance, study and business commitments, Flo explains: “the initial juggling act can be a struggle as you aren’t able to go 100% from day one”.
Balancing planning and flexibility is tough, but that is all part of it. As Flo adds“it’s not all rainbows and unicorns; starting your own business is great but it’s also tough as you drive progress. Rejection is inevitable so see it as character building; just keep swimming!”
You Know Nothing and You Know Enough
You might be reading this article in the hope of learning something? Wise move. Seeking out knowledge and support from those with experience and expertise can save time, money and the pain of learning the hard way.
As founder of Po_ten_cy Zoe King explains, “I’ve learnt the importance of outsourcing the parts of my business I’m not good at or despise doing which, for me, was bookkeeping!”.
That rule applies whatever industry you launch into, with that same sentiment being shared by founders of Kit Studio, Chris Bounds and Hannah Rea. As Chris and Hannah explain, “A key lesson we’ve learnt from launching Kit is the power of investment. In the same way that we want people to invest in us as the experts in our field, we too need to invest in experts in their field. Whether that’s a consultant, accountant or a junior designer, investing in people when you’re starting out is daunting – but it definitely pays off”.
But sometimes you do know enough. Sometimes you have to make a judgement, a tough call or decision which keeps you moving forward. Speaking as an ex-strategy consultant, the worst thing you can do is stop moving; reach paralysis through analysis!
It’s Messy & It’s So Simple
Still with me?
At this point, you have read through 80% of the lessons I wish to share with you. At times lessons 1-8 may have over-simplified; at others come across messy. In some ways, this article is the perfect metaphor for the entrepreneurial path I and others have tread.
Founder of Welltodo Lauren Armes built her business from nothing. As my former Business Coach, she helped me do the same, largely by helping level-up my beliefs and find simplicity amidst all the decisions needing to be made.
As Lauren explains, “self-belief is a massive part of starting your own business. Once you free yourself from doubt and set your vision, you can focus on building momentum, day by day”.
Untangling yourself from limiting beliefs can be a challenge. But, the more progress you make, the simpler things become.
The same is true on a day-to-day basis. Have you ever heard Winston Churchill’s words about “If you’re doing a job you love, you’ll never have to work a day in your life”? Well, Personal Trainer Josh Ward and I agree: that is absolute rubbish.
As Josh says, “if you are doing something you love, you will work harder, longer and tougher than people who are doing something they don’t like. You will want to give up probably a lot more, get more frustrated and look at the fact your normal, employed, stable job friends are seemingly doing so much better than you. You’ll have rollercoaster days/weeks/months, with periods of elation, and others of sheer pessimism”. But, Josh goes on, “work smart and hard through the struggles and you will make it work and make a difference, and you’ll have the biggest satisfaction in knowing that it all came from YOU”.
So What Now?
So many more lessons could have been listed in writing this article.
I hope that the 10 we have shared in writing this article have helped you in some way. But remember, armed with all the wisdom and reading in the world, sometimes there is no substitute for learning by doing.
In the meantime, good luck!
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Before becoming a Personal Trainer, Chris worked at a top US investment bank, Strategy Consultancy and Sports Marketing agency. His experience taught him that physical and mental wellbeing sits at the heart of good performance. He founded Innerfit to improve workplace wellbeing and set out on a mission to transform how organisations approach wellbeing.