Hanani is the CEO and Director of Fro Sister, Author of Thinking Outside The Box: A guide to personal branding, Entrepreneurial mentor to young women, product formulator and does all this while taking care for her family. Hanani is a multi-talented woman who has managed to fuse all these skills, creating an International hair care brand. After completing her first degree in food chemistry, Hanani worked in Food Microbiology and then moved on to do a Master’s degree in Business and another in Human Resources Management landing a senior managerial position as a Human Resources manager.
A fusion of Hanani’s skills, hobbies, knowledge of food chemistry as well as the love for the Afro natural hair led to the creation of Fro Sister natural hair and skincare products. She encourages natural beauty by making products which manage natural hair and promote hair growth all using natural ingredients. Hanani is always working on healthier alternatives for hair and skincare products.
Hanani strongly believes that Focus, Determination, Self-belief , Drive and Prayer are integral ingredients for success. Her aim is to inspire others to reach their full potential as reflected in her book (Thinking outside the box: A guide to personal branding). She currently mentors young women starting out in business and shares her story to inspire others.
Can you tell us about your background and career to date?
After completing my first degree in food chemistry, I worked in Food Microbiology and then moved on to do a Master’s degree in Business and then Human Resources Management landing a senior managerial position as a Human Resources manager. I am the CEO of FroSister, natural hair and Beauty and Author of Thinking Outside The Box: A guide to personal branding.
What would you say are the main personality traits you have that helped you progress?
I’m a risk taker. My philosophy is to live and not just exist. When you set goals and relentlessly go for it, you get a sense of fulfilment, joy and you learn along the way – this is part of living.
I am always willing to learn new skills. I call myself an entrepreneurial student.
Success is never guaranteed, but experiencing setbacks along the way is basically a given. What differentiates those who ultimately fail from those who succeed is the ability to humbly admit where you went wrong, I learn from mistakes, and move on. I make the proper adjustments instead of dwelling on the setback and beating myself up.
In your career, what has been the most difficult challenge and how did you overcome that?
The most difficult challenge was starting my business. Jumping into new territory, cultivating the courage and self-belief.
What are the top 3 things you would advise people to do to manage their career growth?
Be ambitious , think big and really go for those things that make you happy.
Plan and take action through working on your Personal Brand.
Keep focused. Constantly keep your eye on the prize.
How can one ensure that they are a top performer in this competitive and ever changing environment?
Continuous learning. The business world is constantly evolving and we need to keep up.
What does diversity mean to you?
Appreciating the beauty and power of individuality.
What observations have you made about the progress of diversity and inclusion in organizations that you’ve worked in?
It still is a very slow progress.
What do you think is the key to unlocking the talent pipeline in women of colour that could open the door from middle management to senior management?
It’s in the accepting and understanding the beauty of different cultures.
Have you experienced any kind of discrimination in the workplace (consciously or unconsciously)? And how have you tackled it?
To be honest, I didn’t have time to even allow that into my thinking process. I was focused on winning and being at the top of my game. They say, “Be so good that they cant ignore you” and that is exactly what I did.
What role do you think mentoring plays in career progression?
A good mentor breaks you out of your comfort zone. There will always be people around to comfort you, but a good mentor is one that encourages you to keep improving and pushes you into new experiences.
What advice would you give to someone beginning their career in any industry?
Always be willing to learn