Welcome to the Emirates Woman weekly series ‘How I got my job as…’ where we speak to some incredible entrepreneurs and businesswomen both based in the UAE and globally to find out about their career paths that led them to where they are now; what their daily routines look like; the advice they’d give to those starting out; and the hurdles they’ve had to overcome.
This week we chat with Daphne Lamberts, founder of UAE-based clean beauty brand ALAM. After finding it incredibly difficult to find beauty products that were clean and safe, as well as effective, Daphne decided to take the leap and create her own line which aims to do just that.
Emirates Woman sat down with Daphne to find out more about her career and the story behind ALAM.
What was your favourite subject at school?
I enjoyed mathematics and understood formulas easily, and went to an Economic university after high school. However, I felt like this was not something that would interest me for a professional career in the long run, so I switched to a more creative university in the Netherlands, which was a great decision because I have learned so much here and got the opportunity to study 6 months in Paris and graduate in Kuala Lumpur.’
What was your first job?
Customer advisor at a luxury retail store in the Netherlands.
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What eventually brought you to Dubai?
The ‘Yalla’ mentality and the opportunities in the city, the sky’s the limit here. Dubai makes me feel super safe and bonus: the weather is amazing.
Can you talk us through the inspiration behind ALAM?
Nowadays it is difficult to find safe, clean and effective products – for both inner and outer body – you can fully trust it contains only the best pure ingredients out there, without any additives or harmful ingredients. While graduating in Kuala Lumpur, I set out to find remedies through more natural means that improved my quality of life and wellbeing in a natural, sustainable way. I was astounded to experience the exceptional curing power of only the best nature has to offer and how it healed my overall body. From there, directly after graduating, I started carefully developing the ALAM and unique, results-driven products. ALAM is the Malaysian word for ‘Nature’, and stands for my last name Lamberts.
What inspired you to become an entrepreneur?
It was not a dream from a young age to become an entrepreneur, I turned out going into this direction. I learned a lot about superfoods and the healing power from Nature and experienced the exceptional effect myself, which truly improved my overall quality of life and wellbeing. From there I knew I wanted to share this with the world, make a positive impact and create something truly pure, effective, plant-based and sustainable. So there the process started, I don’t come from an entrepreneurial family so I had to learn everything along the way, which I could not do without the constant support of my dad, mom and brother who are there for me day-in-day-out, even though we live in different parts of the world now.
What are the key elements of your role?
For me it’s a 24/7 job, my mind is always with ALAM and I am involved in every single part of the business. In the beginning, it was all about sourcing the best pure ingredients from the plant kingdom and developing the highest quality products. I am always thinking about new ideas, engaging with the ALAM community and spreading the word, being creative as a startup to make the best positive impact on health and wellbeing on both society and the planet. Also, maintaining excellent relationships with all stakeholders, partners and customers.
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Talk us through your daily routine.
I like to get up early, check my phone/email to see if there is anything very urgent. After that, I make myself an ALAM superfood drink (either mix one bamboo scoop with almond or coconut milk or make a smoothie with the superfood) to start the day energized and focussed. After that, I go for a workout class, shower and get ready for the day. Either going straight to meetings or going behind my desk to work from there. I try to close the long days mindfully, either with a 15-minute ALAM superfood clay mask, watching an inspirational podcast/interview or going for a walk. This goes on for 7 days a week, I do not have a day off. But even though every day is ‘ALAM day’ for me, it is never the same which makes it challenging and dynamic, and I enjoy every minute of the process.
What advice do you have for anyone looking to follow in the same footsteps?
Keep on going, don’t give up. It is a long run and you really have to commit 100 per cent on a long-term basis. Have patience, faith but also discipline.
What is the best piece of advice you ever received?
Don’t overthink too much, especially on things you can not control.
And what is the worst?
Don’t start a business at such a young age.
What are the future plans for your brand?
Becoming the trusted, result-driven and all-natural international wellness brand where everyone can go for all health, beauty, wellbeing and living, resting assured to know you consume only the best pure, organic products out there, taking proper care of the planet as well. We’re starting the year right with an amazing partnership coming live 2-2-22, and the launch of ALAM at Faces UAE March 2022, definitely worth discovering the brand and products, also in stores at Faces Mall of the Emirates and Faces Yas Mall.
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