An Interview With
Earlier this year I was delighted to chat with Melinda the founder of Baby2Body. Baby2Body was launched in 2015, and are the health and wellness solution for pregnancy and motherhood, with over 1.3 million women on their platform so far. They provide personalised and stage-specific lifestyle coaching through workout programs, nutrition plans, and wellbeing support — keeping women informed and empowered on how to stay as healthy as possible at this critical time!
Tell us about your career journey that led you to start up your own business?
I’ve been devoted to fitness and wellness, with a particular focus on women, for my entire professional career. I studied psychology at University and was an athlete, so fitness was a prominent part of my life and I got my certifications as a fitness trainer early on. But I also grew up with two parents who owned their own businesses, so entrepreneurship was embedded in me from a young age. I actually sold my first business — care products designed for health clubs — at age 23. That entrepreneurial itch didn’t go away and upon moving to London, I started offering prenatal and postnatal fitness classes that integrated wellness topics. I recognized the power of what I was doing then and how personalized coaching could be delivered at scale to women all over the world. So I grew that business, which led to the launch of a successful fitness and wellbeing DVD and writing for numerous publications. Then, while still working and raising my two kids on my own I got my Masters in Sport Psychology, went to work in consumer healthcare innovation at Philips, and eventually in late 2014, I left that job as I had the tools I needed to launch Baby2Body as a complete, digital health and wellness service for women.
What sparked the idea for your business?
Business ideas are always rooted in some combination of personal experiences and expertise, and that’s what sparked me too. Shortly after I moved to London, I became pregnant for the first time, and I immediately went looking for fitness classes catered to pregnancy and found absolutely nothing. What I needed most didn’t exist, so I created it because I had the skill sets and background to do so and I saw the opportunity for what that could become.
What challenges have you faced as a startup and how did you overcome them?
There’s a new and unique challenge every single day when running a startup — you face all of them. Whenever we encounter a new challenge I don’t want to become so stuck within it that I’m making decisions out of fear, and so I never go there. When I’m facing something that feels daunting I remind myself and my team to take a step back; to give our minds the space and energy to make complete, conscious, and confident decisions. It’s about rising above the challenge to get a new viewpoint and planning your progression forward from a place of strength, not weakness.
How do you manage the Mumboss juggle?
Remembering that quality always beats quantity when it comes to time spent with my family, my kids, my friends — and accepting you’re never going to have enough time for everything. Especially as a single mother running a business, it can feel like I don’t see my kids as much as I’d like to, but I make sure that the time we spend together is as rich, loving, and as meaningful as possible. I think also having my children see me push myself and fight for my dreams has given them the confidence to do the same in their young adult lives — and that’s what I’m most proud of.
Finding ‘me’ time as a Mum is hard, how do you make time for yourself?
My avenue for self-care has always been exercise. I can step away from everything by spending an hour in the gym. It allows me to unwind and take off my CEO hat, my mom hat, my friend hat — I’m just there for me. Once I’ve had that sacred time to focus on myself, it allows me to take on those roles in my life with renewed energy.
What’s your favourite business tool/resource/app?
Anything that makes my life easier or takes something off my plate is a favourite! But probably the one business tool I’m on every single day is Metabase — which allows us to track our key metrics and keep an eye on all of our data in real-time, so I can know where the business stands and how we’re doing against our goals, which is invaluable to success.
What advice would you give to anyone setting up or growing their business?
Make sure you love whatever is at the heart of what you’re doing. It’s really easy to get frustrated or distracted or demotivated when you hit those roadblocks, but if you really love what it is you’re doing and whole-heartedly believe in it, that’s what will keep you going.
Thanks so much, Melinda, it was so great to hear a bit about your business and motherhood journey. Danni x
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