We had the good fortune of connecting with Umi Pl and we’ve shared our conversation below.
Hi Umaima, can you walk us through the thought-process of starting your business?
I wanted to be my own boss! I wanted to have my freedom and obviously give more time to my family. Time once gone never comes back. A minute cannot be rewinded. I wanted to have full control over my career. Hence I knew Time and Choice are my primary reasons for starting my own business. Skincare has been my hobby since I was 17. What I want the world to know about my business is that my hands are a gift to the amazing women of color that go unnoticed and undervalued on a daily basis. I knew I have the distinctive ability to create a connection of trust with my clients. My capacity to listen to the specific needs of each client, and create a well executed strategy, allows me to focus on their particular skin concerns. I combined my years of experience in sales and marketing. Having my own work space has given me a lot of flexibility. I don’t have to be on anyone’s schedule, and I have greater control over how I deliver those services to my clients.
My business journey has been a learning curve for me. There have been many stones & thorns in my journey of success, but I just told myself one thing, “NEVER STOP”. Today I’ve been blessed to stand in the same space as some of pretty powerful women in this world, CEO of Burhani Laser Med Spa.
Can you give our readers an introduction to your business? Maybe you can share a bit about what you do and what sets you apart from others?
As an esthetician I love helping others. I love when someone comes to me with either a skin concern or just not feeling beautiful, and I can help them have confidence that they are truly beautiful. I know how important it was for me to develop a solid client base. It wasn’t that easy, especially in the beginning when I was just starting out. I made sure to make the most out of my esthetician business and become a booked solid esthetician, I made sure to monetize to multiple 6 figures without spending a dime on ads. There are a few things that set me apart from others. I always followed up the next day with my clients, always asked them to come back and send them a thank you message after their important. Clients love to be THANKED! Keeping up with trends is another game changer. Everything constantly changes and improves, especially in the skincare industry. Always being a leader when it came to new techniques has helped me become a booked solid esthetician. I have learnt to get my name out there, Social media is my biggest platform. Posting everyday or once a week has helped our business grow. Continuously marketing myself and my business has set me apart as a successful esthetician. My challenges were my competition. Just like any other industry, the beauty industry is very competitive, even as it continues to grow. I made sure to stay on top of my competition. This opened my doors and gave me a chance to see what other successful businesses are doing and find ways to add them to my own strategies. I picked a few tips along the way and found out how you I could improve my own business. Lastly, keeping up with education has helped me tremendously. Clients want an educated skin therapist. The more we educate them on skin science, the more it would benefit our business. It is very important to operate with a positive “Will do” mindset. I truly believe the difference between those who succeed and those who don’t is persistence and confidence. Do what you love, forge on when everyone else quits and serve others with heart and integrity. If you do that, everything else will fall into place. At the end its my dream to open a second location of my business in Dubai and get it well known not only in the United States, but through out the entire world. Hopefully open a location in every country if everything works out well!
Let’s say your best friend was visiting the area and you wanted to show them the best time ever. Where would you take them? Give us a little itinerary – say it was a week long trip, where would you eat, drink, visit, hang out, etc.
I love the woodlands! I could spend an entire week there. From high-end shopping to outdoor adventuring, The Woodlands is for anyone who visits. Firstly, I would take her to the market street. There is so much luxury shopping, and fine dining, Almost feels like a small-town. Top brand names such as Tiffany & Co. and Michael Kors are among the many shops in Market Street, while the dining options include Texas’ only Tommy Bahama restaurant and Jasper’s. Along with the stores and restaurants, They also have a Cinemark movie theatre and an open plaza that gives kids space to play, which is a big bonus!
Another place I would visit is a hiking place called the George Mitchell Nature Preserve. Just five miles of natural surface hiking and biking trails. This is a protected area and more like home to a variety of wildlife, making it a great place for some birdwatching or wildlife spotting.
Kayaking at the Riva Row Boat House would also be on our schedule for the next morning. This is one of the best ways to enjoy an afternoon. We would start from the boat house, paddle through a scenic canal flanked by tall grass and pine trees until we reach the lake, where our true adventure begins.
One of my favorite restaurants in the Tommy Bahamas. It is right off the shoreline off The Woodlands Waterway with our island-inspired fare, hand-crafted cocktails, and one of the most comprehensive selections of Tommy Bahama apparel and accessories anywhere. Reservations are required but they do allow walk-ins.
We would then visit the Crystal Clear Lagoon in Texas city. This 12-acre Lago Mar crystal clear lagoon is the largest in Texas and a unique staycation destination. There’s white-sand beaches to swim or dine lagoon-side on our beach boardwalk.
Six Flags Hurricane Harbor. This amazing waterpark is located North of Houston in Spring. This is a theme park also known as Hanna-Barbera Land. This amusement park had all its rides removed, with the new owners installing a water park with several water slides.
The best Indo-Chinese food in town at Nukkad Dhaba is one of my favorite places to eat. This place is open until 1:30am which is a plus for all of us! They serve authentic Indian Chinese Cuisine which has the authentic taste and consistency like Chinese food from Bombay, India. They serve extraordinary food and they have outstanding service.
Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
Everyone in life gets a chance to experience sweet and sour memories. Like any other parent my Mother has been the biggest encouragement. She has guided me how to raise a business on a shoe string budget in a one room suite office building. She guided me exactly how to use my inner talent. Today I was able to use that skill to build a huge successful business. I was able to book appointments very quickly and constantly made sales on after another. The biggest thing I learnt was to always surround myself with happy people. My mom always said, “People either build you or drain you, and there’s nothing in between,” and she’s right. I always made Sunday the day that I would get rid of all my complainers. Why? Because I knew it was not worth it. I would make sure to deny service to those that were a complainer, and pulling down my good. I knew they were not going to be a long term client and wouldn’t stay around very long. I considered that one of my major jobs. I learned that if I was going to build a big business and do something, I better have a system to make it go faster.
My loved ones have made me learn over time that a negative client or a negative friend can takes you down with them. They always want company which is fine. But I made sure to surround myself with only positive people for one reason only, I want to be happy.
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