With entrepreneurship in her blood, owing to her father who has been in the market since 1974, Nada Bassam has been working since the young age of 14years. A firm believer in the maxim, ‘Don’t put all your eggs in one basket’, she has dabbled in multifarious industries, including fitness, construction, fashion, medicine, and many more.
A business transformation expert, marketer, and business developer, Nada Bassam is also the CEO and Founder of 360 BD, Nada Bassam Fashion, and the General Manager of Fitness4life. With her passion for entrepreneurship and business, as well as her persistence and determination to create the best consultancy firm in the Middle East, her journey to date has undoubtedly been one of excellence and distinction.
To The Top of The Line
Even as a teenager, Nada’s interest was to stay active and never just hang around. She used to help out in science museums and other school activities during her school years. Her undergraduate studies in Fashion Designing provided her with a platform to work behind the scenes at fashion shows and other events. After graduation, she started working under her father in the construction and real estate industry for 6-7 years, learning the ropes of the field.
“I always like to see and learn many new things and explore new fields because I quickly feel bored doing things repeatedly,” she laughs. In 2012, Nada and Wael Hamarna tried their hands starting a business from scratch when they established Fitness4ife together. A huge learning experience for the couple, Fitness4life was their first foray into the world of entrepreneurship. Backed by a grand opening and consequently a successful business, they expanded their brand to two new and huge locations. With her expertise as a business consultant, Nada Bassam founded 360 BD two years ago, a one-stop-shop for all business solutions needs.
She says that new challenges are what keeps her motivated. The word “impossible” excites her as she seeks to take the impossible and prove that it is possible. “NO is never an answer for me,” Nada states. “If I see something that is possible and something that seems to be impossible, I will always choose the thing that is said to be impossible. It challenges me more in achieving the seemingly impossible. This is what drives me forward”. However, her primary source of motivation is the country that she owes all her major achievements, the UAE. The land that advances, innovates, and adopts every day is an inspiration for her and all her business ventures. “Every single day and every single year, UAE comes up with something innovative and within no time, they do it,” she says, praising the UAE for constantly thriving and growing.
Makin’ It Work
A master of many trades, Nada Bassam prides herself on being a “multi-tasking monster.” Her secret to being able to handle all these different industries with ease, is studying the market. She reveals, “I would definitely study it very well if I don’t know something, making sure that I know my needs and the needs of the market.” Putting herself in the business owner’s shoes gives her an advantage in providing workable solutions. She owes the success of her business to choosing the right people, giving them the right tasks, and getting a 360-degree view of the business. “Diagnosing the problems and executing the solutions are the keys to a successful business,” says Nada, who believes that there are no disadvantages in handling many businesses simultaneously. As someone who lives by the phrase, ‘the sky is the limit’, she believes that sticking to one industry will only help you thrive in selective situations and hence, not make you go beyond your comfort zone and explore undiscovered territories.
As a successful and established woman entrepreneur herself, her advice to women is to educate themselves. “Gaining knowledge and skills, not just degrees; developing the business and the self helps entrepreneurs scale extraordinary heights,” she strongly opines. Secondly, she advises entrepreneurs to get their priorities straight. “Since we are women, we are pulled in many different directions at the same time,” states Nada. “Prioritizing our daily, weekly, monthly tasks is critical to success. Knowing our priorities is one of, if not the most, important thing.” In entrepreneurship, if you lose your footing on one stone, the entire balance you’ve created crumbles down like a domino effect. Making time for yourself, your family, and your business is essential. “If these three things are given equal importance, barely anything can stop you from being the best in the game,” says this all-rounder.
The Business Mantra
Her mantra to a successful business is innovation. Especially since currently the business scene is highly volatile, innovation is your best friend. Adopting and adapting, improving, and innovating are essential for burgeoning your enterprise. “To cope with the market, you need to put your best foot forward,” Nada advises. “I don’t think anything is impossible if you have a good strategic plan and are willing to put in hard work.”
Her advice for novices in the start-up industry is to embark on a business that you incline towards. “Your business needs to be your passion and love,” she remarks. “The customers need to feel that to approach your business.” She also holds that assigning the right tasks to the right people keeps a business going smoothly and successfully. We are not superhuman and we are not capable of handling everything by ourselves. Hence, asking for help and entrusting tasks in the hands of someone capable is of the essence in running a successful business.
An Optimistic Look Forward
This prodigious entrepreneur comments, “I have lots more that I want to achieve. I have just started my journey.” Nada aspires to establish her consultancy firm, 360 BD, all over the UAE and other parts of the Middle East. She believes that starting a business without a strategic plan for the future is a “crime in the business world.” Her advice is to create a business just like one starts schooling, weathering each level with the end goal in mind. Nada Bassam wishes to help all companies, especially the start-ups in the Middle East, to establish themselves successfully and is more than willing to contribute her knowledge, experience, and expertise to achieve this goal. “It is a big challenge, but what is our future without challenges?” Nada concludes, looking forward to an optimistic new year.