Fresh off finishing a business degree, Mackenzie Bloom moved to London, England and was “dead set” on working in the sports industry. But she just didn’t know where to start, as she was in a new country and didn’t have a network.
Then in 2015, Bloom met WIT Fitness founders Dan Williams and Sam Kitching “totally by chance,” she said. At the time, she was working as a retail assistant at an Intersport in central London, and Williams and Kitching opened their original WIT concept store in the basement of the Intersport.
“Wandering downstairs one day on my lunch break,I was instantly captivated by the concept and saw huge potential. That night, I went home and learned everything I could about weightlifting shoes, and the next day I went back and tried to sell a pair to Sam Kitching. Dan likes to joke that I am one of the employees of WIT that was never actually hired. I just turned up one day six years ago and have gotten stuck into the incredible ride,” she said.
Q&A with Bloom:
How do you take your coffee?
Bloom: “Lattes always with sugar if it’s the afternoon and I’m dying for a sugar kick.”
Tell us about your role with WIT:
Bloom: “As Brand Director, I work directly with our CEO and CCO to define what WIT stands for as a brand and set our multi-channel content strategy. I manage our content and production teams, our events and activation teams, and work closely with our heads of partnerships and marketing to make sure that we are speaking with one voice and offering as seamless of an experience to the training obsessed as possible.”
What does a day in your life look like?
Bloom: “Honestly, this can look so different day-to-day, depending on what projects we have on the horizon. Recently, I have delivered experiences at the CrossFit Games, where I worked closely with our Events and Partnerships manager to build a 5,000 square foot multi-brand retail space with appearances by Mat Fraser and Sara Sigmundsdottir and managed our group of incredibly talented content creators to make sure that our social channels were filled with some of the most astonishing performances of the Games…Three weeks after that, the full business set about launching the WIT x Sigmundsdottir collection…Also, five to seven lattes is pretty constant in my daily working life.”
What’s your advice for up-and-coming women looking to pursue a career in the fitness space?
Bloom: “Take up space, find other women to support you and to look up to, and don’t let stubbornness get in the way of your professional development. CrossFit is incredibly egalitarian when we are talking about the sport itself, but the sports industry as a whole isn’t there yet, and most board rooms are still male-dominated. When you’re starting out, don’t be overly confident to the point of being arrogant, but if you have an idea you have thought through, speak up for yourself and allow yourself to take up space because no one is going to do that for you…If you can, find somebody that you can use as a sounding board. My person has been Darina Dunne, Director of Ireland’s Filthy 150, who I was lucky enough to meet four or five years ago, and who has given me some incredibly pragmatic advice over the years. Another is our CCO, Stephanie Outlaw, who I view as a mentor, and that I know, if there are areas in my own development that need working on, I can count on Steph’s help. Strong women lift up other strong women, so if you want to be badass in CrossFit or the fitness industry as a whole, hitch yourself to someone who looks like they’ve got it right and then just try to learn as much as you can.”