Each week, we ask small businesses key questions.
Here we speak to Nicole Wright, who runs Nicole Wright Personal Training from Den of Gask, near Turriff
How and why did you start in business?
I moved from London to Aberdeen to work as an events and conference organiser in the oil and gas industry. As we all know, times have been hard and events were the first thing to go.
It seemed like the perfect time to start afresh and do something I had wanted to do for years.
How did you get to where you are today?
After graduating with a history degree I found myself working for a private bank in the south of France.
It sounds idyllic, but an office job was just not for me and I moved to London to start my events career. It took me all over the world and gave me incredible professional and life experiences.
I kept getting contracts in Aberdeen and eventually I decided to move there. The events career did not work out as planned but after retraining I really feel like I have found my calling as a personal trainer and nutrition coach.
Who helped you?
My parents have always supported my decisions, even though I am sure they would have loved it if I had stayed in the south of France.
My boyfriend has been my sounding board as I changed careers, and he is also the brave tester of my healthy but not always tasty food creations.
I’m also a member of the Federation of Small Businesses as to grow successfully I need solid business support and advice.
What has been your biggest mistake?
I found it very difficult to say no to new clients and ended up working seven days a week and crazy hours. I was exhausted which is not much use to my clients. I now have a strict no weekend work rule.
What is your greatest achievement?
I don’t think I am there yet, however, sometimes when I am finding it tough I think how far I’ve come and remember that I am doing this by myself – and that feels like an achievement.
If you were in power in government, what would you change?
Child obesity is increasing dramatically but the way they are tackling it – for example, the sugar tax – isn’t effective. They need to get to the root of the problem through education and more sport and activities in schools.
What do you still hope to achieve?
I have big ideas for 2017. I’m working on a business plan to create an intensive and educational weight-loss retreat. I’d love to be able to do this is Scotland as the potential for new business is huge here.
What do you do to relax?
I love the outdoors and am in the perfect place for it. It may not sound relaxing but most weekends you will find me running up Bennachie. I do sit on the sofa sometimes too.
What are you currently reading, listening to or glued to on the TV?
I love real life adventure books. I’m currently reading The Sisters of Sinai (by Janet Soskice), the inspiring story of two Scottish sisters who went on incredible adventures in the 1800s, when women were still expected to sit at home.
What do you waste your money on?
Clothes – I love smart clothes but hardly ever get to wear them now.
How would your friends describe you?
As a chocolate-loving, crazy fitness person.
What would your enemies say about you?
I hope I don’t have any but I often get a few choice words from disgruntled clients when I put them on a crisp or doughnut ban.
What do you drive and dream of driving?
I drive a Fiat Punto, which is my first car as I only learnt to drive when I moved here. It is completely impractical for all my equipment and where we live, so I would love a big 4×4.