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Rayne Founder Sarah Jones On How To Build Solutions That Address Real Market Needs "Embrace failure as a learning opportunity- because not every idea or decision will lead to success, and that's okay."

By Tamara Pupic

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Sarah Jones

While Rayne founder and CEO Sarah Jones has been able to build quite an illustrious career for herself (which, of course, had many turns and u-turns), the entrepreneur thinks that she would not ascribe the way that it played out to a need to reinvent herself; instead, she believes that all her decisions have followed her inner sense of true fulfillment. "I've tried to stay true to what really drives me," she says. "I love growing businesses, working with talented people, and building solutions that address real market needs."

Jones' biography thus reveals someone who's a courageous builder- she moved to Dubai as part of the retail mergers and acquisitions team at British multinational Deloitte, but before long, she left her corporate career to start up Mini Exchange -an online shopping site for parents- in 2014, which went on to be rebranded as Sprii in 2017. Over the years, Jones was able to grow it to a business that raised millions of dollars; however, it closed in 2020, and she then decided to spend a few years focusing on her family- as it so happens, she is now a mother of five.

As she reflects on her experience with Sprii, Jones says that she could write a book on all the learnings and the journey she went on, but the key pearls of wisdom would include, firstly, the importance of getting the right people on one's team. "Times will get hard, so you need to surround yourself with people who are smart, committed, and who you trust," Jones says. "Then, identify your strengths, and leverage them in your business, but be aware that running a business can be demanding, both physically and mentally. When the stakes are high, you need to be at your best- I didn't always get this right."

Running Sprii also taught Jones to always seek out the views of customers, employees, and mentors, and that's another piece of advice she gives her peers today. "Use their feedback to improve your business," she says. "Double points if they have a completely different view to yours– being curious of other perspectives always helps. And lastly, embrace failure as a learning opportunity- because not every idea or decision will lead to success, and that's okay."

In 2023, Jones made her way back into the entrepreneurial arena as the founder and CEO of professional services consulting firm, Rayne. "Rayne provides a solution that's very close to my heart," she says. "After working with a number of businesses over the last couple of years, I noticed a consistent requirement for senior consultants and employees in the finance and human resources (HR) fields, but on a flexible, interim, or fractional basis. Rayne was formed to address this need, giving businesses of all sizes specialist talent when they need it most."

Jones says that for 2024, her plan is to focus on building Rayne, delivering on its growth potential, and creating opportunities for consultants and clients. "My challenge, however, is to do this whilst also hitting my second target- maintaining a sensible work-life balance," Jones adds. "In truth, this will be a challenge, as I have a super busy home life, with five young kids- the oldest is six! I don't know if there's ever a way to get this balance 'right', but I'll be doing my best."

TIME FOR A CHANGE? THE HOW-TO (ACCORDING TO SARAH JONES)

Identify your passion and strengths "Take the time to reflect on what truly motivates and energizes you. Aligning your professional path with your passions and strengths leads to real professional fulfillment."

Connect with others "Build relationships with people who can offer support and guidance as you navigate your career change. Seek out mentors who can share their insights and experiences with you. Give first– you'll get it back."

Keep learning and growing "Identify the skills you need for your new career path, and find ways to develop them. Whether through formal education or hands-on experience, continuous learning will help you succeed in your new endeavors."

Related: From Corporate To Creative: Amrita Sethi's Path To Success In Dubai's Digital Art Scene

Tamara Pupic

Entrepreneur Staff

Managing Editor, Entrepreneur Middle East

Tamara Pupic is the Managing Editor of Entrepreneur Middle East.

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