Lesson 39: Doing Business With Purpose - A Conversation With Salima Visram, Founder of Samara Fashion House


Hello Everyone! I hope that you are all doing well and that you have enjoyed the last few weeks of summer. This past few weeks, I wrapped my first ever masterclass series “The Next Right Step.” I spent the last five weeks teaching and learning alongside a cohort of over 50 people, where I taught about the Roots of Resilience, my unique personal development framework that I created to support people in reaching their goals and feeling well in the process. As my team and I take the next few weeks off in order to get some well-deserved rest, I will be sharing with you more of the incredible conversations that I had with inspiring individuals for my IG Live Series: #LessonsInResilience. 


This week, I’m proud to share with you a conversation that I had with a close friend who is also a business owner: Salima Visram, founder of Samara, a 100% cruelty free fashion house for minimalists. Salima is a person who is making a big impact in the world through her business, and I wanted to have a conversation with her about how we can all do the same. In this episode, Salima shares her experience and lessons learned building a business that creates change in the world, the challenges that she and her team have faced in this season of covid, and how she has supported herself in these times. 


Here are some other things you can look forward to in this episode: 


Salima shares what her everyday grounding practices have been during this time and the systems that she has set in place during this COVID season to best show up for herself and others 


2:35 - I ask Salima what inspired her to create Samara, and what meaning it has taken on. Salima shares with us: 


  • The original inspiration for the name ‘Samara’, and how it became a meaningful way for her a business that aligned with her values 


  • Where the inspiration for the Solar backpack came from being someone who grew up in Kenya, and how she realized that she could create impact through her brand 


  • How she took one of the hardest experiences in her life such as losing her mom, and channeled her energy and feelings into creating a brand that embodied her mom and what she believed in 

7:55 - Salima and I talk about what it means to channel pain into impact, and how we can gain a sense of purpose through our work


  • Salima shares her advice for those facing a hard season in these times, and explains how you can make a choice to channel the negative energy that you are feeling right now into creating something impactful that will contribute to your mission 


  • Salima shares her lessons learned over the past few years building her Samara community, and what her favourite parts of it all have been such as connecting with those that share her value  and achieving philanthropic goals with the help of her community


  • Salima shares how she faced self-doubt as a business owner when she has encountered it, and we discuss how being a business owner is a continuous process of building resilience and self-efficacy while giving you advice on how you can do it yourself 

16:32 - Salima tells us about the incredible impact that her and her community were able to have during this COVID season in Kenya by creating a meal program to provide a meal for a family in her hometown for every dollar spent in her business 


  • Salima shares what her inspiration was to create the meal program, and what it has meant to her to work alongside her community to create change in the world 
  • Salima and I discuss the power of human connection, and how running our businesses in a way that is aligned with our values can help us find like-minded people 


22:12 - Finally, Salima and I discuss what it is like to face burnout as a business owner, and Salima shares about her own experience with burnout and how she has been able to set boundaries with her business and work in order to build what it is that she wants over the long-term. We also talk about: 


  • Why it’s important to know when to step back and allow your team to “step in” 
  • How connecting with our family and friends and setting time aside for ourselves can actually help our business 
  • What is bringing Salima light during this season, and what is coming up for her and Samara over the next few months. 


“At some point you realize that you have a choice. You can either sit in what you’re feeling and let it dictate what every day is going to be like, or you can take what you are feeling and turn it into something. Doing that will pull you through so much.” - Salima Visram, Episode 39 of the Lessons Learned Podcast. 

I hope that this conversation convinces you that you have the power today and every day to create lasting change through your business, and that it gives you the inspiration to take the first step. Until next time! 


Love, Komal.