Advice and Insight from Entrepreneur Princess Dena bint Nahar Al-Saud
Interview and write-up by: Maria Cometti
Have you ever been unsure whether to move forward with an idea? Have you let fear of failure keep you from pursuing your dreams? If so, Riyadh based entrepreneur Princess Dena Bint Nahar Al-Saud has some advice for you! Princess Dena is the co-founder of both the Empowerment Hub and the boutique consultancy firm Neat, and founder of Yummy Tummy Bakery.
I had the pleasure and honor to meet Princess Dena at her Neat office. Have you ever met someone who both inspired and informed you, while at the same time made you feel right at home? That was how I felt during our interview. Princess Dena is someone I wish for all women to meet at some point in their lives. Until that time comes, I hope this interview leaves you feeling empowered and inspired to get out there and make your mark in the world!
M: Have you always known that you are an entrepreneur? What inspired you to go into business?
D: I haven’t always known. I feel that what inspired me was making the right decision at the right time. It is all about trusting your gut & good timing. I love to bake and Yummy Tummy started as a home business. Friends of friends started coming to me with orders and soon it was too much to manage out of my home so I expanded into a retail location.
M: What is the most import lesson you have learned about starting or running a successful business?
D: Trust your gut always and do everything with love and good faith. Look at failure as a learning milestone and nothing else, if anything, you will learn more out of your failures than appraisals. Your intention is what is most important.
M: How did the Empowerment Hub come into existence?
D: It came to life when 5 like-minded Saudi females were approached by one of the co-founders to bring to life the concept of mass fitness events intertwined with giving back to the local community.
M: What are your goals/plans for Empowerment Hub?
D: Our main goal is to revolutionize what women feed their minds and bodies. We aim to strengthen women’s health and fitness awareness in the Kingdom by creating active, social, and educational events. More importantly, we want to give back to the community. All proceeds will go to different non-profit organizations and charities in the Saudi…Fitness4aCause!
M: Tell us about your recent acceptance and plans for study with THNK School of creative leadership?
D: I am still overwhelmed, being one of the youngest they have ever accepted. I believe in design thinking method, and apparently the THNK method expands on that way of thought and help leaders develop and strengthen their skills in an innovative way. I look forward to implementing my learnings to my current business and my country.
M: What is your primary role in your bespoke consultancy firm Neat?
D: I am the co-founder, and I usually take care of everything involved with creativity and thinking outside the box. From brainstorming new business ideas, to conceptualization and to ideation, to fulfill yearly high-level marketing strategies.
M: What motivates you to do what you do?
D: I have a love for learning, and my main motivation is mainly that! I like exploring new ideas, concepts, places, cultures and cuisines mainly to learn. I also have a huge heart and an open mind.
M: What work are you most proud of?
D: Summiting Kilimanjaro, I know it’s not “work” per say but it is what I am most proud of. The experience changed my life in making me realize that everything is overrated. When climbing the mountain, you are stripped of everything and left to rely on yourself and the people around you. It was a profound experience.
M: Do you have a motto or saying that you live and work by?
D: “To Each His Own” Intention is most important
M: Do you have any advice to women coming to live in Riyadh for the first time?
D: Come with an open mind, a huge smile and an empty stomach. It is just like anywhere in the sense that once you have a good group and know your way around you will be fine.
M: What are your biggest goals or aspirations for the future?
D: To be part of the positive change in my country, to launch my business successfully, and to travel the world.
M: Do you have any ideas on how Saudi and expatriate women can collaborate for the greater good of society?
D: There are many charities they can volunteer with at any time or specific projects or just your usual “random acts of kindness”
M: Can you recommend any of your favorite shops, restaurants, or places to visit in Riyadh?
D: Acoustic lounge – breakfast
Tao bistro – brunch/lunch
Nozomi or Entrecote – dinner
Draft in Centria mall
I also love going around Diriyah & Wadi Haneefa
M: Thank you Princess Dena for this lovely interview and best of luck with all your goals and Dreams!