It’s been a VERY exciting day here at Busylizzy HQ after finding out that our founder, Julie Clabby, has been shortlisted in the Great British Entrepreneur Awards! She has been recognised in the Health & Wellbeing category for the creation of the Busylizzy concept in 2011, subsequent franchising of the brand in 2014, and ongoing success across the South East.
The Great British Entrepreneur team received a record 4,800 entries this year across the eight regions, so it has never been tougher to make it to the shortlist – and we’re thrilled!
The whole Busylizzy concept was born from Julie’s own maternity leave experience of a real gap in the market for decent fitness provision for mums. If they are unable to access a gym with a creche or rely on family and friends to look after little ones while they exercise, what can they do? Bringing their baby with them to tailored postnatal fitness classes was the answer.
So Busylizzy’s roots lie firmly in the physical and mental wellbeing of mums. And it now encompasses mums to be with its pregnancy class provision to keep pregnant ladies fit and active during pregnancy, prepare them for childbirth and connect them with a network of other mums to be in their area.
Julie also sought to bring mum and baby class provision into the twenty-first century and lessen the culture shock of maternity leave for many of the high flying career women taking time out to look after little ones. No more cups of tea out of plastic cups in dusty old village halls once a week. She introduced a modern gym membership model and ethos not only to exercise sessions for mums, but also to baby classes. Nice venues, professional instructors and flexibility to attend a range of classes to suit changing diaries. Just because you’re on maternity leave, doesn’t mean you don’t have other commitments!
So with mums’ health and wellbeing as its cornerstone, the Busylizzy franchise platform has also been built around working mums and the increasing desire to create a flexible work-life balance around a career, babies, nursery and school. All Busylizzy franchisees are mums, and many have had second or third babies while also running their businesses. Even pre-Covid when home working became the norm, we all worked from home, running our businesses around our families.
The franchise network that Julie created works within web based systems and on flexible terms. Because of the flexible App based booking system which means members are in control of the classes they attend, the legwork of booking people in and out of sessions is taken care of. Franchise owners can log in and work when it suits them. No 9-5 in the office. They can organise their businesses when little ones are napping, at school or in the evenings – it’s all about working smart at a time and in a way that works around family life.
The regional finalists of the Great British Entrepreneur Awards will be announced in September – watch this space!