When it comes to making waves in an industry, nobody has done it quite like Joëlle Dinnage. The young entrepreneur has taking the art world by storm and racked up a huge number of awards in the process. It seems Joëlle has the Midas touch with her companies seeing monumental growth. We were lucky to sit down with her and talk about her journey so far and get some advice for those wanting to follow in her footsteps.
You started your entrepreneurial journey at a young age, what was it about this path that excited you?
I liked the challenge and surprising people what I was capable of. I wasn’t particularly popular with the boys in school and was hugely insecure about how I looked but I was successful in achieving goals. And that felt great!
You are renowned in the art world, which is infamously hard to get a start in, tell us a little about how you got into this industry?
Since I was little I was very creative, and I got drawn to Art. I graduated from the Art Academy in the Netherlands, and soon after I moved to London and started my first Art Gallery there.
I could spend all day listing the awards you and your businesses having won, obviously Female Entrepreneur of the year has to be right up there in your list of achievements. What was it like to win such a great award?
It was never my ambition to win any awards, but in 2013 ‘Woman in Trade’ UK approached me and featured me in their magazine as ‘Inspirational Businesswoman of the Year’. Soon after I received more nominations of awards organizations I wasn’t even aware of… and yes recently won the ‘Female Entrepreneur of the Year 2015’ Silver Award by the Stevie’s in New York. I still can’t believe it to be honest – It feels amazing and am glad that my hard work is getting recognition, as it’s been a tough road, so this keeps me sharp.
One of your businesses ‘Global Art Agency’ has seen monumental growth, from an office in Oxford to offices in London and Dubai. What are the keys to growing a company at this magnitude, but keeping it manageable?
A good and positive team is one of the keys, plus clear communication, trust, and courage. My business partner and I work day and night and are always connected 24/7 with each other and with our agents wherever we are in the world.
Looking at the scope of your empire, it’s clear to see that you are an extremely busy lady. What is a day in the life of Joëlle like?
It’s far less glamorous or exciting as anyone might think. Yes I travel a lot and see interesting places, and meet fascinating people, which I enjoy a lot. But there are also days that I have to work from home, rushing around, going out for meetings, conference calls with Tokyo, jumping on my bike to pick-up my little boy from nursery, quickly walking the dog before Miami wakes up to have another conference. It’s an ongoing madness most days (laughs) – but I enjoy it all of course.
What do you believe are the 3 main keys to building a successful business from the ground up?
- Confidence 2. Will Power 3. Positivity
Social media has become a big part of a company’s arsenal and you have an extremely engaged audience. What advice do you have to create a successful social media platform for a business?
Social media nowadays has become a lot more commercial, and so you have to invest a little to get something great out of it. It’s also very time-consuming, so my advice is to prepare to be dedicated, and invest a little money to do some social media advertising; it’s a great way to reach the right audience.
With success come failures. Did you have any major setbacks in your career and how did you overcome them?
I am a risk-taker and luckily many things worked out, but when I have taken a risk before and it didn’t look like it was working out I quickly tried to find the positive in it – always looking on the bright side. I believe every situation has a solution, that’s why I hate the word ‘problem’ because in my mind problems don’t exist. And actually I never had any major setbacks… I did think a while ago that I’d had one, but looking back at it now it was a good lesson.
If you could give advice to yourself at the beginning of your career, knowing what you know now, what would it be?
Keep believing in yourself! Don’t worry what others might say or think, you can and will do it!
You have had some fascinating roles, and your empire continues to expand, to date, what’s been your favorite role?
I really enjoyed organizing and hosting the Charity Art Auction at Blenheim Palace where we raised nearly £6000 GBP for ‘Doctors without Borders’ together with ‘Act against Ebola’.
And currently I am doing an Art Consultancy job for a huge project in Abu Dhabi, which I really enjoy!
I read you were the curator for Playboy, which must be a unique experience. How did that opportunity arise?
That’s been amazing indeed! I was simply asked to do it and curate the place with fab artworks that complimented the space as well as the bunny’s. It was a lot of fun, and a great success.
We’ve just arrived into 2016, what are your goals for this year and how will you ensure you hit them?
I have so many, and yes I will hit them without a doubt. I am so eager for 2016 because this will be my year! Someone said the other day ‘Joëlle, every year is your year’ but they ain’t seen nothing yet!
If you could own only one piece of art for the rest of your life what would it be?
Definitely an original Salvador Dali painting – the master!
Place: Bora Bora. Quote: Success is the best revenge. Book: The Secret. Person(s): Richard Branson. & Leonardo DiCaprio.