We had the good fortune of connecting with Fariha Ahmed and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Fariha, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I’ve always found motivation in being the underdog- in not being expected to succeed at something because I do not fit the “expected” image. I have a background in cyber security and that is where this mentality first was conceived, I think. It is a male-dominated industry, and I was definitely asked “Are you sure you are at the right building?” more than once when I first started out. This only motivated me to work harder and succeed at greater magnitudes. Today, while I still work in this field, I wanted to venture out into something more creative. After speaking to a few good friends in the Houston fine jewelry and luxury watch industry, I realized one common denominator:
There were no iconic female names in the game. Also, for years many of my peers encouraged me to use my Instagram following to my advantage and potentially making an income from it. I never found quite the right fit for me to utilize this, but now I finally felt that same spark of interest and passion I felt years ago while pursuing my tech career- I knew I wanted to break into this industry and make a name for myself.
I knew that my journey in this path would not be easy, if anything, it might be harder than my first career path. The jewelry industry can be very territorial, not to mention the potential hate that can come with you posting successful sales. Its all part of the hustle, and like it said, it just drives me to dig my heels in and stay focused. Pressure creates diamonds!
Alright, so for those in our community who might not be familiar with your business, can you tell us more?
I’m learning every single day and I am the most excited about where this journey will take me. As of right now, I call myself a “broker” for luxury watches and jewelry- which means that I am an independent worker who helps multiple jewelers sell their inventory by promoting it on my Instagram page (@farihathejeweler) and I receive a commission per sale. I enjoy the freedom this gives me to work with an infinite array of goods while helping out multiple businesses- so everybody is happy! I have been blessed enough to sell to two NBA players within my first few months of starting up. Marketing is a large part of success in any business, and I think my social media presence has definitely played a beneficial role in putting my name out there.
A common theme in the career paths I have chosen has been being an outlier in my industry, but using that to my advantage rather than letting it discourage me. I get messages on Instagram daily from girls around the country/world seeking life or job advice. Its a huge honor to know that they trust me enough to seek this kind of guidance from me- someone they have never met. I want to continue to inspire women to make choices that make them happy, and to not feel limited by any stigma- gender, cultural, etc.
“Never allow the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game” is one of my favorite quotes. I hope to show women that you can do literally anything you set your mind to, the only limitation ever is your own mindset.
Shoutout is all about shouting out others who you feel deserve additional recognition and exposure. Who would you like to shoutout?
The first person to give me a chance in my journey was my friend and local jeweler here in Houston, Borna Dayyani (BC Jewelers). You’ll notice that many jewelry shops are multi-generational family businesses, and he gave me the proper guidance on how to get started as someone who had no prior background in this field. Shoutout to you Borna, for believing in me!
Instagram: @farihaxahmed @farihathejeweler