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James Parkes
From European Rugby
to the
Frontier of Digital Wellness

James Parkes is a man whose journey I've been closely following for over two years. I first met him right at the start of his venture with My Day, and since then, his journey has been nothing short of inspirational.

From those early days, James' commitment to growth and innovation was evident. Over two years of tireless effort - challenging norms, embracing change, learning, and engaging with countless emails and conversations - have recently culminated in the launch of a go-to-market product that's set to redefine how businesses approach employee wellbeing and their role in social and environmental change.

The significance of James' work can't be overstated. It's a paradigm shift, creating vast opportunities across the UK and America. But this isn't just about launching a successful business; it's about creating a business built for good. James and his team are providing a platform that helps other businesses live their values more fully, ensuring the health of their employees while actively contributing to climate change mitigation and social impact initiatives.

It was an absolutely pleasure to sit down with him recently and dive into the mind of a man with global ambitions. 

Stay inspired. Stay curious. 

 

Tracey

James Parkes - My Day-0270.jpg

In a meticulously designed corner office where warm light meets cool tech, James surveys his dual computer screens. One displays complex algorithms and the other, a live feed of real-time user engagement data. 

 

This isn't just another tech startup; it's the nucleus of his grand plan to elevate digital wellness into a collective global endeavour. 

 

On the shelves are tokens of a past life: trophies and memorabilia from a nine-year stint with Exeter Chiefs. It was during this period that he played a pivotal role in the team’s rise to glory, transforming them into a powerhouse in European rugby. These pieces serve not as relics but as ongoing reminders of the resilience and collaboration he honed on the field—virtues he's funnelling into a digital landscape.

 

"Without challenge, there isn't change. We can't change ourselves if we don't challenge ourselves,” he reflects, succinctly capturing the essence of his entrepreneurial journey. This tenet isn’t a mere platitude but a governing principle, drawn from years of pushing physical limits on the rugby field and now applied to navigating the intricate labyrinths of the tech industry.

 

"Everyone just wants black and white...But without everything that we've been through, we wouldn't be where we are now.”

 

In an environment that often demands binary successes and failures, James relishes the grey areas. To him, these are the crucibles of creativity and innovation. He looks upon his career as a continuum of iterations, each phase learning from the one before. "The worst that will happen is I'll get it wrong and I'll learn a load and meet some amazing people. So think it's worth a crack," he says, lending his viewpoint an empirical flavour, almost as if he’s conducting a series of life experiments to reach an optimised version of himself and his venture.

 

"I now wholeheartedly believe that I am fully capable and appropriately armed to build a fantastic business - one of the biggest digital wellbeing businesses on the planet.”

 

Emanating from James is an aura of quiet yet impassioned confidence. It's not the brash assurance often seen in the startup world but a settled form of conviction born from lived experiences. “Being as ambitious as I am to do something at the scale that we want to, means you're always going to have challenges and you're always going to have things going wrong," he admits, recognising that ambition and friction are two sides of the same coin. It’s a refreshing form of realism, devoid of pessimism.

 

With a deep focus on values-driven leadership, James isn’t just out to make a profit. His goals are more expansive, bordering on the altruistic. "The actions you display are the ultimate way of defining whether or not you are being who you want to be," he articulates, aligning his personal philosophy with his company’s core mission. He envisions a rewards system based on climate action, social impact, and biodiversity—thus extending the touch-points of his platform from individual well-being to societal and environmental wellness.

 

As James leans back in his chair, one thing becomes abundantly clear: his story isn't just an unfolding tech saga, nor is it merely a transition from sports hero to digital visionary. It's a blueprint for what happens when relentless drive meets boundless imagination, underpinned by a commitment to personal and societal betterment. 

 

James and his burgeoning venture offer more than a service; they offer a lifeline to better living and corporate responsibility. 

 

For companies seeking to align their missions with these core principles, the invitation to collaborate is open. After all, as James likes to put it, "We all get one go on the spinning rock and you don't know how long it's going to last. So why not go out and try and do something audacious and monumental?" 

 

This isn’t just an invitation—it's a clarion call to join him in shaping a future that benefits us all.

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