The race is not for the swiftest, it is for those who endure to the very end.
This quote pretty much sums up the life story of our founder, Aisha Armbrister, or more fondly known as Aisha Nesut Ani. When Aisha first started her career as a solopreneur back in 2009, she had little to no access to resources, information, or even mentorship. Few people showed faith in her ideas and talent, yet that has only fueled Aisha to make the impossible possible.
Coming from a humble background, today, Aisha leads a successful brand under the name of EBS (Elemental Business Solutions LLC) and a global online event, BPMM (BluePrints & MasterMinds).
Budding Success Story- From Teen Mom to Business Leader
Our founder has proven that when your world comes tumbling down, all is not lost (even if it seems that way). Keep going because there is light at the end of every dark tunnel.
At 16 years old she became a mom for the first time and her entire world changed. There was the going narrative at the time that she’d ruined any chance of having a “normal” and successful life by becoming a young mother. Aisha never believed that for a moment, although she’d agree that her life has been far from what you’d call normal.
Before starting her own business, Aisha worked many jobs in corporate Bahamas. In the latter part of her career, she experienced the cruel reality as a single working mom when she was told she could not have time off to grieve the death of her son’s and daughter’s fathers and was subsequently “let go” for taking the needed time anyway. It was also during this time that Aisha ventured into her first entrepreneurial project with no prior knowledge or experience of what it meant to be an entrepreneur.
“I knew I had a desire to do something different, and I researched, executed and did a lot of what came naturally and produced the first and only Bahama Gems 2010 Swimsuit Calendar with Ondaroad Productions. This is where my journey began, so I always go back to this point.” says Aisha reflecting back on the beginning of her entrepreneurial journey. The trajectory of Aisha’s life was forever changed.
Aisha graduated high school as an honor student and shortly after became a college drop out. She made the difficult decision to prioritize providing for her family which was her farewell to formal, institutionalized education.
Up to that point my life was centered around my work, not my family. But losing my support system, both physically & financially, I knew then, that my time was my most valuable asset. I needed to be able to spend more of it with my children & I needed to be able to make more money in the time I was working to support my family.
Aisha had big plans for the future, the success from her first solo project gave Aisha the confidence that she needed to push herself even further. With little access to resources, information or industry mentorship, she very quickly recognized a gap in the local business and entrepreneur community. In 2011, she formed a women’s empowerment network Viva La Bella with the aim of connecting women navigating similar struggles that she now faced as a budding business woman.
Being active in these spaces gave Aisha essential insights into some of the fundamental challenges women were experiencing in their businesses, startups, and side hustles, as a collective. What she didn’t know then, was that the seeds for EBS (Elemental Business Solutions) were being planted.
Making Way amidst Criticism, Misogyny and Discouragement
Numerous times, Aisha knocked on doors for investment, mentorship, partnership or simply guidance and was ignored or turned away. Some people judged her as a single mom, some didn’t think she was “qualified” and some were less interested in her business acumen and more interested in what she could “do” as a woman.
Similar to many women who choose to journey into entrepreneurship, Aisha’s had her share of tears, trials, sleepless nights, disappointments, setbacks and failures. She believes her greatest transformations and biggest lessons occurred during some of the most challenging times of her life.
A lot of my journey as an entrepreneur has been lonely. I’m a first generation entrepreneur, so family and friends don’t really understand your vision, they don’t understand what you do or your struggles. So for the most part, it’s difficult for them to support you in the ways you need it. It’s always easier for them to say, ‘Well why don’t you just get a job’, rather than saying, ‘Keep going! I know you can do it’.
It took over a decade of grit, perseverance, and focus for Aisha to build a name that embodies her credibility in the industry. She credits her desire to create a legacy that her children could be proud of and her deep belief that she was put on this planet to make an impact as her life compass.
Determined and driven by passion; Aisha has chosen to push back against adversity and in 2018 the pieces of the puzzle were finally beginning to come together.
Working on Her Vision
Most of us are too scared to take risks and prefer to stay stuck in the loop rather than trying something new. Anyone who knows Aisha can attest to her willingness to take the risk, always with the intention of learning something new from her experiences.
After making lifestyle changes that inspired her to become a (now award winning) Certified Holistic Health & Nutrition Coach, Aisha spent 5 years building a brand and reputation in the wellness space. She started with coaching persons looking to transition to a plant based whole foods lifestyle and through that process evolved into a self taught vegan chef. She also partnered with Seedlings Place, host of Green Earth Festival and co-produced the Bahamas’ largest and only green-living lifestyle event as well as other health and wellness related programs.
The thought to pivot came in 2016 after Aisha gave birth to her youngest daughter, Aya-Amarah. She suffered postpartum depression and getting back to life pre-baby was proving a challenge. Even more importantly, this was another defining moment in Aisha’s life and she knew that it was time for her to take the BIG risk.
“So I’d been helping friends and family for years with ideas for businesses. People would call me and be like Aisha, I have this idea, what do you think about this? Or Aisha I need you to help me come up with a name for my business. Or Aisha can you design this for me? Or Aisha, how do you think I should do this? I didn’t realize it then, but I was a “go to” consultant in business long before I even conceived Elemental Business Solutions.” Aisha shares with us.
Everything I’ve ever done, I have decided that I would do it first, then figured out what I needed to know to do it with excellence second. I realized that I could use what I’ve learned over the last 12 years to help others who are now trying to figure out starting or building a business or brand.
In 2017, Aisha was hired for the first time as a freelance consultant for a major company. She took a few more freelancing gigs and paddle balled the idea of yet another business venture.
In 2020 she officially took the leap and founded Elemental Business Solutions LLC. We all know the kind of year 2020 was for us globally, but Aisha used this time to get even more clear on her vision and mission for her brand new company.
Her grand charge is to work with 2000 entrepreneurs in the Bahamas, around the Caribbean and the world over the next 10 years to help them build 6 and 7 figure companies.
An Inspiring Leader for Female Entrepreneurs
When people talk about overnight success stories in the context that they do not exist, this would be one of those supporting examples.
When many would have given up, Aisha has continued trailblazing.
“Although Elemental is the summit of my past, today we’re at the beginning of our future.” says Aisha Nesut Ani.
She’s designed her company to help other businesses grow by delivering top-tier business consulting, coaching and development offerings. BluePrints & MasterMinds (a pending trademark of the company) is an evolution of the community work Aisha started with Viva La Bella.
BluePrints & MasterMinds was established by EBS to bridge the gap between:
1. Present leaders, digital shapers, experts, and masters with the apprentices and next-generation thinkers, innovators, and business investors.
2. The Bahamas, Caribbean, and the rest of the world.
As a native of a tiny island in the archipelago of the Bahamas, Aisha’s first-hand experience of what it’s like to be under-represented, under-funded, under served and underestimated are the catalysts for her continuing the work of creating new, exciting, invigorating and impactful opportunities for visible and progressive advancement in diverse economies. She believes this is possible through strategic and favorable national and international partnerships.
As we officially launch EBS and host the first BluePrints & MasterMinds Conference, it was important to Aisha that we begin building a community of mentors, investors, teachers, skilled experts and leaders passionate about actively paying it forward.
The initial conference line up includes industry experts like Rashad Bilal of Earn Your Leisure, Ronne Brown of Girl CEO, Kirk-Anthony Hamilton of Tech Beach, Glennett Fowler of Fowlco Ltd. and others who have inspired Aisha’s professional journey.
“We have to create a stronger eco-system that supports SMEs and the women and men that take big and small risks everyday as they maneuver the highs and lows of entrepreneurship. We all have to contribute to the changes and advancements we want to see and I’m here to do my part.” Aisha affirms.
Aisha is a mom, a leader, a founder, an employer, a coach and a dreamer. She is a smart businesswoman who is just at the beginning of her success story.
We asked her what was the one message she wanted to leave with readers, and she replied, “Nothing is impossible.”.