I feel relieved, excited and so much more confident to go forward and expand, whilst knowing I’m growing a team that will give me peace of mind when I can’t be there for everything.

Shokoofeh’s story

Shokoofeh is the founder of Tanfit, an ecommerce platform for female sport clothing that she started during Covid when her original business idea had to take a back seat. With a personal passion for everyone to have equal opportunities, to be seen and to be heard in society, Tanfit’s goal is to help every woman fall in love with their body using a unique design and technology that accentuates the curves you want, making you feel confident to stand out, not hide away.

Saying this in one sentence hasn’t always been this easy though. 

With entrepreneurship in her blood, Shokoofeh is driven, ambitious and determined. We caught up with her to ask her more about her journey with Wyseminds, and the shift her company needed to prepare for growth and allow her to start making her dreams become a reality.  

What was your situation?

I started Tanfit with a very clear idea in mind – I wanted Tanfit to be the go to app to book competitive rates for fitness classes across the Netherlands. However, as Covid hit in 2020 and gyms across the globe started closing overnight, like so many other entrepreneurs I had to make a very quick change of plan. What was meant to be Tanfit branded gym clothing as an offshoot of the fitness class passes, the gym clothing became the lead in my business. Riding the covid wave of loungewear being the ‘must have’ for everyone’s stay at home wardrobe, we grew quickly.

With quick growth, constantly adapting and reacting to a global pandemic, and working remotely with freelancers and partners, I was at the core of both the day to day running of the business and the bigger strategic direction. Being immersed in the details made it very difficult to confidently prioritise and delegate.

I’ve always had a great vision for my life, but having different projects and people around me, I was confused which way to go and how I was going to get there.

What was stopping your growth plan?

I realised the answer to this question when I started thinking my social media agency wasn’t the right fit. I felt I could manage it better myself but I just didn’t have the time. On reflection, what I now know is that the challenge came from

me – it was my clarity on my vision and purpose that made it impossible to translate my goals clearly to them so they could have the freedom to create and wow me with their ideas and content. That flow wasn’t there. If this was happening with one of my partners, it could be happening with others and within my team itself.

As a company, I was looking to grow, move into new markets and take on more team members, yet what we were all doing it for wasn’t clear. How could I ever be sure we were working as one?  

What did you do to create a stronger growth path? 

I am constantly networking – the people you might meet, the things you could learn, an opportunity at every corner. And that’s how I came across Wyseminds. I was introduced to the founder, Julie, and started the Lift-Off programme with her. We had weekly sessions where the conversations, the tools and techniques led me to identify my blocks to growth. In my case, it came down to me being unclear of my personal and organisational purpose. Wyseminds supported me in not only discovering this as a block, but seeing how it was impacting many parts of my company, giving me a new way of looking at growth and making my business more resilient. 

We started by understanding what was stopping me from growing. What were the blocks? By starting here, it opened up my mind to all the things that could be different, that could be easier.

What changed?

Focus. With my printed purpose and values on the office wall, it’s always in front of me. When I’m talking to other people, it brings direction to every conversation, why we’re doing it and what I’m looking for – there’s not so much noise. My team is clear on it too – it becomes central to conversations, guides us and helps with decision making especially with our suppliers and new product ranges. This in turn has given me more freedom as my team now has the same clarity as me, empowering them to make decisions that we’ll all be aligned on. 

As for my social media agency, the working relationship is much more enjoyable because I’m clearer, making it easier for them to translate the brand into the content they create. And since this, our social engagement has increased so we’re all happy! 

Now I can say what I’m doing in one sentence, it’s brought a new level of confidence, especially at networking events. I know I’d be able to answer any question that comes my way. It’s an unapologetic confidence.

What’s next for you, Shokoofeh?

Expand my team and delegate more operational responsibility to other people so I can move a bit more easily and for the business to not be so dependent on me.

There’s now a proven business model that I can take to a wider audience with the chance to expand the concepts. The process with Wyseminds gave me a clearer direction and receiving the positive feedback based on the changes I was making saw me become more confident that growth was possible and I could scale up to other markets. A few months after starting with Wyseminds, I expanded Tanfit and started operating in Germany. It was a YES moment for me – I could see how we could move forward, dream a bit and enjoy the journey.

What's the one piece of advice you would pass onto another female entrepreneur:

Ask for help. I think female entrepreneurs believe in themselves, they have a mission that they want to change the world for the better. But it’s a difficult journey, it’s a difficult route that we’re choosing. We don’t have all the answers and it’s good to have the support from our network to help us move forward.

What could be next for you, our Wyseminds followers?

Shokoofeh has been on the Wyseminds Lift-Off programme for the past 12 months, taking the time to discover the right next step that’s led her to start making some big plans for women the world over to shine and be seen. Wondering how Wyseminds can support you? Get in touch with our founder, Julie, to find out more about what we do.