Describing himself as a ‘serial entrepreneur’, Founder and CEO of health and wellness digital platform LiveSmart, Alex Heaton, has always had a passion for starting a high-growth business. His interest in technology began at a young age, learning how to code at the age of 14.
From the outset, I had high ambitions to start a business. With both my parents being architects, they encouraged me to question how things worked. My passion for technology developed further after studying computer science at university; studying a scientific subject sets you up to think in a logical, problem solving way.
After my studies I worked in digital marketing for a large array of clients including the NHS and the Department for Education. Not only did these roles engage my passion for design but the nature of my work meant there was potential to positively influence people’s health and wellbeing.
The health and wellbeing of my team is a priority and at LiveSmart we have a number of initiatives to encourage a healthy lifestyle. I like to lead by example (it keeps me on my toes!) and running to our office, which is based in London, is a key part of my routine.
Having run a number of marathons I think that running a business can be just as challenging. In fact – it’s like running a series of marathons back-to-back!
Growing up in Wales and spending 14 years in Yorkshire sparked a love for the outdoors — I was surrounded by a number of national parks, so for me hiking and the outdoors helps me to relax and provides me with a new perspective.
I encourage my employees to integrate health and wellness into their lives. Being flexible about lunch breaks so they can go to the gym, for example, is one way to support employees. And, at LiveSmart we provide health assessments accompanied by tailored health coaching to help employees improve areas of their health and wellbeing.
We also enjoy a bit of friendly competition in our office too with teams vying to be ‘top of the board’ through a number of activities, including step challenges, relays and hikes.
I know that if I feel good, I can give my best at work – and the same goes for my employees.
How do employees fit health and wellbeing around their work?
As an employer, it’s vital to understand the importance of normalising exercise and appreciate what’s stopping you or your employees from integrating healthy living as a part of work life.
Be committed, be flexible and make it fun – accommodate those with busy lives who want to stay healthy and, importantly, engage those who might otherwise give it a miss.
Alex outlines the benefits of his wellbeing programme
Alex gives his top tip for young entrepreneurs starting out in business today