By Anne Austin
Glasgow lady Aladin Ali experienced the excitement and passion of business life as a child growing up within her entrepreneurial family. The 44-year-old is currently building her third successful business and still experiences the passion for ideas and implementation that she first experienced as a child while watching her father progress in various business ventures.
Aladin’s West End based business, The Healing Academy, has been operational for three and a half years and provides energy healing sessions which range from 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the individual client. This is a far cry from Aladin’s initial catering business. However, her second venture brought her to where she is now. Aladin said:
“I was doing great selling skin products and jewellery online. People would ask me for advice about their skin and I got to know clients very well. During this time I begun to realise I had an untapped gift.”
During her second business, Aladin the Collection, which is still operating, Aladin repeatedly heard affirmative feedback from clients that not only was her skin care products exceptional but they reported back to her that she had an energising, uplifting effect on them. It came as a surprise that via hands on healing and listening to what was occurring in people’s lives and minds, that a third successful project would briskly take off.
“People were telling me I had a healing effect on them and that it was a gift I should utilise more. I was shocked when they told me they came in for skin care and I had changed their life.”
Although she didn’t feel quite ready to embark on a new venture just yet the feedback from clients birthed the idea of what was to become The Healing Academy; an idea that Aladin herself had never previously considered. Her highly sensitive business perception, a hunger for progress and astounding listening skills, (a talent many say they have but few organically do!) provided Aladin with the confidence to take some steps to test the water.
“I started just by doing some free healing sessions to get a feel for what I could achieve with individuals. I’d never thought of doing anything like this before. The results confirmed that I indeed had a healing gift and so I concentrated on how I could use them.”
The concept of issuing free samples of a product or service when launching a new business is not a new idea. But Aladin’s prospect was not just about try before you buy. The approach to healing and uplifting is based entirely on the individual so Aladin wanted to test if she really could make a success out of this project.
Whether it is a relationship problem, getting out from a rut, changing direction in life, weight loss, healing aches and pains, energising or detecting client’s gifts, the wide variety of services on offer at The Healing Academy is limitless.
Aladin’s collection was very product centric but almost in polar opposite at The Healing Academy, Aladin is the brand. The story surrounding this inspirational example of entrepreneurial strength, is putting this business out there beyond the Glasgow area.
Getting the new venture recognised while sustaining a skin care and jewellery business is no mean feat. Aladin puts her success down to a passion of overcoming obstacles, staying positive and self-belief. “There were times people suggested to me to give up.”
Not only did this business woman reject that advice but she also did not let it knock her self-confidence or determination. Entrepreneurial success for this lady has derived from a firm conviction that no matter what happens in the way of challenges, and there will always be challenges, is to stick with it and keep on going.
Challenges varied in form for The Healing Academy. Aladin found that being self-employed and having no work colleagues could sometimes be difficult. “In particular with The Healing Academy, being alone a lot of the time could be difficult. But by talking to others in business, attending conferences and listening to what challenges others had faced and how they combatted them really inspired me.”
At the rate the business is growing Aladin may not be spending so much work time alone in the very near future. The competition which consists of mainly multi nationals or large corporations now does not phase the one woman show but it did bring some resistance in starting out. “I don’t have the marketing budget these big guys do so I had to consider my options very carefully.”
One of the Unique Selling Points (USP’s) of The Healing Academy is personal interaction. As relationships with clients thrive Aladin also thrives and firmly believes that her success is down to people getting to know her. As previously mentioned this diversification from previous businesses puts Aladin at the core; the brand was born.
From social media and word of mouth The Healing Academy is now frequently requested to speak at a selection of events from Rotary Club meetings to charity evenings amongst other occasions. As a result Aladin produced YouTube videos and has made her first appearance on NTV which was filmed in London. The show discussed alternative healing during that episode and the station was inundated with calls from viewers asking Aladin for advice.
Aladin contributes success to a good work life balance. “Work life balance is really important. For me to perform effectively I have to be happy, content, positive and energised. I go to the gym every morning, I sing in a choir, I dance and I spend a lot of time with friends.”
With each of the above Aladin makes a conscientious effort and abides to switch off from her work completely so on her return to work she is completely re energised. A difficult task for any entrepreneur to achieve but one Aladin sees as completely necessary to preserve what she has developed and continually progress within her current chosen filed.
Networking is also an area which Aladin Ali believes is invaluable. For anyone going into business great stress is placed upon contacts and Aladin commented that she was amazed at contacts from years ago have become current once again.
Aladin’s first book was published towards the end of last year and has been another stepping stone in this rollercoaster to success. Wind Beneath your Wings: Inspiration for Daily Life published under Aladin’s Collection’s, the book has received overwhelming reviews such as: “Short chapters make it really easy to read. An asset for people distressed and have difficulty ploughing through a lot of self-help books out there. Concise practical uplifting advice to help people through any of life’s challenges.”
After storms demolished a school in Bangladesh, Aladin travelled to the area in April 2012 to help with fundraising for new schools to be erected. When questioned whether her success was down to not primarily being driven by money she said: “I get reward from working with people to find their own way forward. After all, people seen skills in me that I didn’t know I had. If I could wish for anything it would be to maintain happiness and [she laughs] money is good but if I had more I could put it towards building schools.”
To find out more about The Healing Academy go to http://healingacademy.co.uk/