Today was the third day in the Virtual Women Championship organized by 360 Experiential Solutions under the Auspices of the National Council for Women & in partnership with ExxonMobil. And the day started with a fire-side chat between Malak Wahba and Sandra Farid the CEO of Acumen Consulting firm.
Sandra Farid is a graduate from a German system school which taught her to get things done the right way, then she has graduated from the American University in Cairo with double majoring in Economics and Business. After graduation, she has started working in corporates for 1.5 years before shifting her career to become an entrepreneur who founded her consulting firm named Acumen.
Malak’s first question to Sandra was to tell us more about her hardships & how she has managed those hardships during her entrepreneurship journey.
Sandra tackled an important myth that is well-spread given that entrepreneurs thinks that they will start focusing on the work, projects, clients, and building the team right away. However, you need first to deal with electronics, furniture, internet connection, maintenance, taxes process, banking & salary payroll, and deal with logistics crisis. And those non-work related activities consume 40%-50% of your total time. So, those tasks are exhausting & not straight-forward which led Sandra took a lot of time streamlining the logistics & trying her best to automate them. And the main advice Sandra gave was to seek help from various people & organizations to get a clarity on all of the possible solutions.
Then Malak asked about the fact that Sandra is the advisor of the Antiques & Tourism minister, which might lead to more challenges as a young woman. And below are all of the challenges that Sandra listed being a young woman in the government.
Resistance being the younges woman in every meeting.
Sandra used to be rough in the beginning, which she learnt through mentorship that this is wrong. And that she needs to check all of the possible options always. Instead of having the attack mode.
And then Malek asked Sandra to reveal all of her other faces other than being an entrepreneur & working as an advisor in the governmental sphere.
The fact that Sandra is an outgoing person, who used to be a professional basketball player, currently she plays music in addition to acting. She loves to win & explore new things doing multiple things.
Sandra was super clear that she is passionate about her job, however her job is not her passion. And that’s why she can’t have only work on her plate.
Malak then asked what is the best or the worst thing in being a woman.
From Sandra’s point of view, the best thing is being a multi-taster who never has her “nothing” box. However, the worst thing is the fact that we are emotional & this leads to having more pressure on ourselves which might lead to less functionality at some point.
Malak then asked around the dreams that Sandra didn’t fulfill yet.
Sandra shifted her mind-set from being target-oriented to be journey-oriented. As the win is just a moment & the journey is the thing that stays with you. So, her dream is to become the best version of herself & to work on her tolerance level. She aims to be impactful enjoying the journey & exploring more things as she is a combination of many things.