Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Hayley O'Hara, Founder of Pelvic Goddess by Hayley Inc., located in Toronto, ON, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Pelvic Goddess by Hayley is a pelvic health and wellness brand that focuses on transforming the way pelvic health is practiced by giving it a role in our daily rituals. Our services include both in-person and virtual Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy, online prenatal and postnatal fitness programming, and online yoga classes. Our customers can be anyone experiencing pelvic floor dysfunction, those looking to prevent pelvic floor dysfunction, and those who want to improve the way they feel day-to-day through better movement and lifestyle choices. Our customers typically consist of a prenatal and postnatal population, those who enjoy fitness and yoga, and those interested in preventative health with the goal of aging well.
Tell us about yourself
I was inspired to start my business during the pandemic. I was working full-time as a Physiotherapist at two busy clinics in Toronto. I was incredibly burnt out and didn't feel the work I was doing was reaching enough people. Virtual programming was increasing in popularity, and I wanted to build greater awareness around pelvic floor health. I had the goal of scaling my services so that they were accessible to individuals all over the world and at a rate that was much more affordable than one-on-one Pelvic Floor Physiotherapy. Each day, I'm motivated by the difference that I'm making in my clients' lives - the positive messages that I receive from new and expecting mothers, the physical improvements I'm able to see my clients achieve in their sessions with me, and the global awareness that I'm raising around pelvic floor health. It's a conversation that we need to get more comfortable with having, and what I do on a day-to-day basis is making this happen.
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
My biggest accomplishment has been creating a supportive and loving community that values movement, preventative health, and wellness. I also feel that I am disrupting an industry, the Physical Therapy industry, that hasn't changed since its inception. Blending rehabilitation and fitness is not new, but doing it in a way that moves away from one-on-one sessions and integrates pelvic floor health and pre/postnatal fitness and therapy is something that is.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
One of the hardest parts of running my business is creating healthy boundaries between my personal life and work. I am the whole team - production, marketing, communications, copy, advertising, social media, and service delivery - when I stop, the show stops. It's hard not to continue working until midnight, and on weekends, it's hard to know how much of my personal life to share, and it's just really hard to be everything at once. Outsourcing is definitely the next step for me. However, while I'm still growing my business, healthy boundaries is an area that I will need to work on and develop.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Be prepared to fail and do not get hung up on your failures - this is time that you can spend learning from your mistakes and strategizing on how best to succeed going forwards.
- Businesses don't grow overnight. It can be years before you turn a profit, so be willing to not only invest money but also to lose money for the first few years that you are starting your business.
- Create a business plan and understand your why - if you don't have a solid "why" behind what you are doing, if you are only motivated by financial gain, you will not have the stamina to stay in the game and continue running your business when you are losing money and/or not growing your business as fast as you'd like to.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solo or small business entrepreneur that you'd like to share, then please answer these interview questions. We'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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