Tell us more about Well Defined:
We started Well Defined to help bring the wellness industry to life, helping translate all the passion for wellness that we all see on social media, into engaging live events and experiences, and helping small businesses in the industry to grow their potential and awareness. In a nutshell, we run content driven events and live experiences, and we also provide both event management, and business growth strategies to brands in the industry. Our overall aim is to break the mould of traditional business, and make the wellness industry a more inclusive and collaborative place.
Tell us a little about your background and your role within your company?
Before Well Defined, Chelsea and I ran Be:FIT London together for a total of 5 years. Chelsea was from a commercial background, and I used to work in health and fitness marketing, primarily for boutique gyms. Together we built a wellness festival that helped women to find health and happiness, and after growing and developing the brand for years, we decided it was time to move on together to the next challenge.
What incentivised you to start?
Both the events industry and the wellness industry had changed so much in the time we had been working together on Be:FIT, and we wanted to do something where we could really pioneer that change. We were tired of the corporate structures and limitations that were held against us every day, and both wanted to own a business where we could steer it to represent what we believe, and collaborate more closely with all the amazing people we had come to know over years in the industry.
Have you ever done anything like this before?
We have a lot of experience with wellness events and event management generally, as well as strong backgrounds in marketing and commercial, so none of that was new to us. Owning a business on the other hand, was certainly a new chapter and a huge learning curve. We have both always been very entrepreneurial and ambitious, so we knew we could tackle the challenges that came with it.
How do you handle the competition?
We firmly believe there is space for everyone in this industry. It isn’t like other industries- people are so supportive of each other and all just want to collaborate to drive the greater good, I think that’s what makes wellness so special. Of course people will try and copy ideas or tear you down, but for every one of those there’s many others trying to help and support you along the way!
What do you predict for wellness in 2019?
It’s going to be a big year for sure. Definitely a lot more live experiences and events – watch this space! I also think more brands will start to embrace the message of making wellness less intimidating and more accessible for all – that’s what the industry certainly needs.
How do you promote and PR your business?
To be honest it has happened really organically, through all the brilliant relationships we have in the industry. Social media is definitely very key for us too though, and we push the importance of this channel with the brands we work with too – Social Media Strategy is one of the packages we offer as a company.
What does a typical work day look like for you?
Often our day will start with a morning class in London, followed by back-to-back meetings. We always try and fit in some focussed laptop time in the afternoons (on our matching pink laptops!) and then we will either have an event in the evening, or be catching up on emails. Event work never stops and hours are definitely not consistent, so it changes every day.
What has been the hardest thing(s) about starting this latest venture? How you’ve worked around the challenges
For us, everything has taken off really quickly which is amazing, but there is only two of us and only so many hours in the day. We have had to expand quickly to keep up with the demand, which has meant having to learn a lot about our business and plan for the future in a very short space of time. Sometimes you have to step back, and take the time to replan and refocus.
What advice would you give to someone looking to start in the health and wellness industry?
Do it! Don’t let fear hold you back. There is so much more room for creative, passionate people in this industry. If you don’t know where to start, I would say start going to lots of events and speaking to as many people as you can – you never know when an opportunity might open up, and it’s all about getting your name out there.
What are your favourite brands right now?
That’s an impossible question to answer! There are so many! We love that so many wellness brands are developing new products around sustainability – that is a trend that we can absolutely both get on board with.
What’s been your biggest achievement in life thus far?
Definitely launching Well Defined. The success we have had in a small space of time is overwhelming, but we are very proud of what we have achieved.
And biggest failure?
We don’t believe in the word failure, is there ever such a thing? We prefer the word “Learning”
What’s been the funniest moment of your career?
In the events industry there is always funny moments! Last year we ran a tour, travelling for 2 weeks straight across the country running daily fitness events and attending multiple workouts with very little sleep. It was filled with deliriously tired moments, including our team of 5 girls, in gym gear singing spice girls to each other at the top of our voices on our tour bus. That was something I never expected to be a career moment!
Who were your role models growing up?
I’ve always been inspired by women who know what they want and go for it. My mum was one, she was always a working mum, and super passionate about her job in the NHS. And there have been many more women in my life since who I’ve looked up to in the same way.
Did you have a mentor or people you asked for advice?
Chelsea and I both have a few people who we have always respected in business who have certainly supported us along the way, but generally we do that for each other! Best advice around this is, if you need support- don’t be afraid to ask for it!
How has what you do, changed you as a person?
A lot! At uni and growing up I wasn’t the sporty girl at all, and I was much more interested in going out drinking than going to the gym. I think working in wellness and finding my own personal love of fitness has really helped me find self confidence and be more comfortable with myself, and I can’t imagine not being in this industry now. Owning a business has also helped me to get thicker skin – you just have to because you are going to take blows and setbacks, and you have to take it all in your stride.
What are the top 5 books and blogs on your reading list?
I’m so bad with finding the time to read books! It’s a personal goal of mine to start making time for it though. Lauren Armes, Welltodo Global Founder recently shared her book list with me, so I will be starting with a few from that.
If you could do any other job, aside from what you do now, what would it be?
I’m also a trained Personal Trainer, if I wasn’t on my side of things I would definitely want to be training people for a living.
What’s yet to come?
A whole lot! We have lots of really exciting events coming up in the next 6 months and even more planned in 2019. Best thing to do is follow @welldefined_ or join our mailing list as we send out industry news and exclusive event updates. We also have big expansion plans and we are currently working on some international projects, so watch this space!
Do you have any unconventional words of advice?
One of my favourite quotes is from Oprah: “Don’t think you can be brave in your life and your work and never disappoint anyone – it doesn’t work that way” –
It’s so true. You won’t always make people happy all the time, you have to do what your gut tells you, and back yourself all the way.
What is your motto?
Doubt kills more dreams than failure ever will. So….just go for it. What is there really to lose.
If money and time were no object, what would be on your to-do and to-see list?
Literally everywhere. I travel as much as I can and love an adventure trip. I want to see the world. I am planning to climb the three peaks next year, and after that Machu Picchu is high on my to do list. If money and time were no object I would probably also take a few weeks to chill out in a 5 star hotel in the Maldives though!