The Traveling Entrepreneur: Sally McWilliam
Welcome to The Traveling Entrepreneur! Each Monday, we'll feature a different entrepreneur who spends at least part of their working hours on the road. This week is a special edition! Sally McWilliam is currently in month 7 of a 12 month honeymoon. Sally has worked in the fitness industry her entire career, but she's launching her online business while she's on the road. I was so fascinated with Sally's story that I modified the usual questions to fit her situation. This isn't the last you'll hear from her on this blog!
Meet Sally McWilliam
Q. Can you tell me a bit about your business?
A. My business is all about challenging the current fitness notions of our image focused society. I help women develop self confidence and find empowerment through exercise, real world nutrition, and body positivity advice. I have recently expanded into online training so it’s great to know I can help people all across the world!
Q. What is your favorite thing about being self-employed?
A. I can spread my own message of health & wellness, instead of furthering someone else’s I don’t believe in just because I work for them.
Q. What is the most challenging aspect of your business?
A. As I am currently in South America a huge challenge is working with infrequent wifi and sporadic electricity.
Q. Did you leave a 9-5 to pursue your business? If so, what was that process like?
A. No, I’ve always worked in the fitness industry. Starting at 18, I’ve traditionally worked ‘odd’ hours but it has only been recently I have expanded into online training.
Q. Who is your biggest inspiration in the entrepreneurship world?
A. To be honest, myself. I don’t say that to sound like I am the greatest, I say it because I feel it. I look inward for inspiration, not outward.
Q. What originally inspired you to work for yourself?
A. I was sick of the way fitness & health are promoted. According to Instagram, Facebook and Women’s Health magazine, fitness = being slim and drinking kale juice. Instead of complaining about the narrow minded message that the industry spreads, I decided to create my own platform to speak from.
Q. What was the best piece of advice you received when you were first getting started?
A. It’s harder than you think it will be.
Q. If you had to start your business over from scratch today, what would be your top three priorities?
A. I would make a plan. I would learn more about taxes & money. I would take more deep breaths.
Q. Do you travel frequently while maintaining your business?
A. Yes! I’m almost at the end of a 9 month adventure around South America. Over the last five years I have traveled to 31 countries and lived in three. It has been a whirlwind adventure - just the way I like it.
Q. Are there any tools or resources that allow you to work from anywhere that you would recommend to other entrepreneurs?
A. Being a Fitness Trainer and not being particularly interested in technology until a year ago I never thought I would say this but my Apple Mac is by far the best business building tool for me.
Q. What has been your favorite destination so far?
A. What a tough one! Peru, Austria & Italy have all captured my heart a little more than the rest.
Q. How does traveling enhance your current business?
A. Experiencing health and fitness from different perspectives in different cultures is hugely helpful for me as a human, and as a business owner. The first world is so focused on ‘rich girl fitness’ where anything less than an expensive gym membership and the latest workout gear just won’t do. By seeing the real world, I can better relate to people from all walks of life.
Q. What advice do you have for people who want to travel while they work?
A. Find a balance between enjoying the new place you are in and developing your business. Set aside time each day to grow your business. Some days that might just be 15 minutes, others (like if theres a monsoon outside) that might be two hours.
I passionately believe life is there to be lived. I follow my inner most dreams and make them a reality. I thrive on lifting others up, opening people’s eyes to the beauty of life and educating people on the true value of health and fitness. If you like fitness, awesome scenery and laughs connect with me on Facebook or my blog.
If you're a globe trotting entrepreneur, and you'd like to be featured (or if you know someone who might), please email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.