Alpha CEO Niloufar Banisaied Swipes Right On Underdogs
I love being underestimated. I think it’s the biggest superpower for women in business. I’ve trained myself to be motivated by people who say “no,” and you “can’t.” I create energy from that. I think a lot of women in business can relate to this. The number of times I’ve been rejected has just been the fuel to my fire.
I just retrained my brain from day one: every time I got a hurtful email, or an Instagram message, or some investor telling me [the idea for Alpha and the moods] was stupid, I just got more excited about it, and I knew I was headed in the right direction. People generally don’t know how to see things that don’t exist yet, so you just have to believe in yourself and stick to your gut feeling.
Being underestimated also gives the element of surprise. When other companies identify you as a competitor, they watch your every move. If they don’t see you as a threat, they won’t see you coming around the corner to overtake them. Competition is healthy; in my opinion, you need it for the extra push, and you can learn a lot about your competitors and apply it to your business game plan.
If everybody thought it was going to work, it would have already been done. That’s really how you create a gap in the market for yourself and become different from your competitors.
The Only Failure Is Not Trying
So what is my best advice for achieving success?
Start somewhere and go for it! We started Alpha because we believe in dating in a safe environment and a healthy place where the LGBTQ+ community can be themselves and not be afraid of how they look and are being judged based on only their appearance. The goal is to be yourself and find exactly what you’re looking for on Alpha.
Don’t be scared of the “what ifs” because the truth is, the only failure is not trying. That’s the only way you can fail. Trying and having it not work out isn’t a failure.
Don’t Let Fear Hold You Back
How a person handles fear can determine whether they are successful or not.
I think fear and fear of the unknown, and perceived failure is what holds people back. I am more scared of complacency than having something not work out. I’d rather take a leap of faith and fall than stand on the edge forever. I love trying new things, things that scare me, challenge me, and keep me on my toes!
As a female-founded company, our core values are kindness, accountability, equality, respect, and relationships. These values are a part of my DNA and will continue to guide us along as our north star and mission to end misogyny and create a kinder internet in all corners of the world.
I am scared of a lot of things, but I try to challenge myself every day to do something that scares me because 90% of the time it isn’t as bad as you thought it was! I learned that recently from my Pilates Instructor, who is such a boss lady, Nikkita Weerasinghe!
She challenges me five times a week to get out of my comfort zone, and it gets me pumped for my day and my week.
You Have To Start Somewhere
Achieving success starts with the most straightforward steps, like writing your idea down on a sticky note and putting it on your bathroom mirror, and staring at it for two weeks. That’s the first move.
Historically, many women have been discouraged from going for it. We’ve been riddled with fear, the “what ifs,” and the “don’t be too out there, be demure, be quiet.” But start somewhere and go for it. Who cares if you fail! Get up and try again until you get it right.
Don’t ever have a pity party for yourself; you’re capable of doing amazing things, and if you try hard enough and manifest it, you will reach anything you want on this planet.
If you can dream it, you can do it! Don’t get me wrong, I have mental breakdowns, and I think it’s normal to have them, but remember you have a goal and vision, and to get there, you have to work hard for it.
We are currently under development for our second dating application, Privileged. We AT Alpha can’t wait for the world to be exposed to one of the fastest dating apps to find love, or honestly anything that your heart desires!
I knew the world needed an app like Privileged. I am so passionate about the privileged. I know how hard it is for independent and ambitious women to find love in the world. I wanted to change the world in some shape or form, but I had no idea what that might look like. Now I know!
By Niloufar Banisaied, CEO, Alpha Gay Dating & Chat