In the words of the famous 1966 song: “this is a man’s world, but it wouldn’t be nothing without a woman or a girl”. More than half a century later, the playing field between the sexes has levelled out a bit, and in an age of celebrity brands and social media influencers, it’s easy to think you can be fit for business without putting in much effort.

The reality – particularly for girls and young women – can be quite different. Look at Beyonce. She’s a fierce, independent woman in charge of a creative empire that would make most City businessmen blush and, quite rightly, has the world at her feet.

Did she achieve this success without breaking a sweat? Not. A. Chance. As a young woman of colour, she fought to be taken seriously first as an artist, then as a businesswoman. She may be sitting pretty now, but the singer, actor, fashion icon AND mum-of-three knew she had to graft to get where she is today.

If you (or your daughter, sister, niece, granddaughter, insert other nouns here) are itching to follow in Beyonce’s footsteps and build your own brand or run your own business in the future, then here is a heads up: we’ve got this.

24 fingers (us), Little Piggy (Kathy Ennis) aka 24 Degrees have teamed up with BlitzFitMe (Oliver Berquez) to create Fit for Business, a training programme for young women aged between 16 and 21 who are looking to be their own Queen B, but may not be certain how to get started.

Where school and college – even university – ends, the Fit for Business programme begins, equipping 24 young women from Essex with the skills they need to keep their bodies strong and healthy, as well as turning a smart business idea into a money-making reality.

The exercise and nutrition component of the Active Essex-backed Fit for Business programme will help participants:

• Improve their fitness levels – strength, stamina, endurance and posture
• Have a positive body image
• Get better sleep, have more energy and reduce fatigue
• Learn how to create healthy and tasty meals
• Improve their focus and achieve more

Meanwhile, the entrepreneur component, led by 24 Degrees, will help participants:

• Understand the basics of starting a business
• Learn how to take an idea and create a business plan
• Create products and services
• How to market a business on social media
• Build a personal profile online

As well offering guidance about personal health and business skills, Fit for Business also offers guidance and support via a range of activities including:

• Coach-led online fitness sessions every week
• Weekly expert-led business start-up training sessions;
• Access to the BlitzFitMe app and all its features including: home workouts to accompany the coach-led sessions, blogs/articles, recipes, and social media templates and content ideas;
• Workbooks and support resources;
• Daily support from our experts;
• Weekly feedback and check-ins.

Emma Goode and Kathy Ennis, co-founders of 24 Degrees, said about the launch of Fit for Business: “We’re so privileged to be able to share the lessons we’ve learned in business, especially with young women.

“We’re really looking forward to seeing what they will achieve and how far they will go after taking part in the Fit for Business programme.”

Oliver Berquez adds: “I’m super excited to be working with Emma and Kathy as I know what a difference improving someone’s health, fitness and nutrition can have on someone’s life. It’s so important that people are fit for business, and by helping the next generation of entrepreneurs learn these vital skills, this programme will have a huge, positive impact on their performance, both personally and professionally.”

The first course will begin on Monday 14th September, 2020, and places are being snapped up fast.

Thanks to generous sponsors Sport England, which has provided 75% of the funding, the 20-week online programme costs £75. That’s the equivalent of £3.75 a week – not bad for something that could set you on a path to being your own boss for the price of a cappuccino.

Want to sign up and get ahead of the pack? E-mail to register or book your place directly here. Remember: healthy mind + healthy body = healthy business.

PS: we haven’t forgotten the next James Dyson/Jay Z of Essex either. A custom-design programme for young men aged 16 and above launches this autumn.