Interview with Female Entrepreneur in UAE

Why I chose this career:

Marianna: ​I am passionate about all things digital so digital marketing was a great fit for me – I love the endless possibilities of marketing brands using digital channels. A big part of digital and content marketing is writing and this is something I enjoy immensely; I need to be writing on a daily basis so my work fulfills that need for me. ​

How I prepare for success:

Marianna: ​I am always on the lookout for opportunities – no matter how small or big. I am a huge believer in thinking big and thinking outside the box. I don’t believe in setting limits to my goals and dreams. When I launched my digital strategy agency ​in the UAE at the beginning of 2014, my core focus was on staying afloat and making it through the first year – yet through perseverance, hard work, and a bit of luck, I ended the first year with working with a Hollywood film client!

“I don’t believe in setting limits to my goals and dreams.”

marianna uaeMy greatest obstacle and how I dealt with it:

Marianna: One of the biggest challenges of running a niche digital strategy agency in a foreign country is building up work connections and a trusted network of potential clients and suppliers​. It takes time, commitment and perseverance to develop and maintain these kind of relationships. I went as far as launching my own sushi networking dinners in lieu of and due to the lack of quality networking events.

My greatest fear:

Marianna: ​I’d say not being able to work for myself and enjoy all the highs (and even the lows) that being an entrepreneur bring with it. ​

My proudest accomplishment:

Marianna: Running a small business that actual makes a difference to our clients – we mostly work with SME’s and it is incredible to see the kind of difference working with a digital agency makes to their business and their bottom line.

How I blend life and work to create the life I want:

Marianna: One of the highlights of running a small, niche digital agency is being able to travel the world whilst still working – so I frequently take advantage of that. My husband and I are both travel junkies so we take any opportunity we can to get away and explore a new country.​

I am inspired by:

Marianna: Smart, strong, driven, dedicated female entrepreneurs – women who go for it, work damn hard, succeed, and pave the way ​for other women to do something similar. Oprah, Tina Fey, Sheryl Sandberg – massive inspirations for me.

Professionally, I aspire to:

Marianna: To make a difference to my clients, to add value to my team members in terms of developing their skills and knowledge, and to act as professionally and ethically as possible. ​

My career or business advice to other women in UAE:

Marianna: Work hard. Build a network of trusted connections. Get great referral partners. Save – launching a business in the UAE is expensive. ​

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