Jasmin Thomas is the founder of Ohana, originally a vegan, functional and CBD-infused skincare company. After a multiple sclerosis diagnosis in 2015, she started using cannabis to alleviate various frustrating symptoms of her condition. Her medical journey led to her professional one, which now allows her to pursue her passions. In 2018, Jasmin co-founded entOURage Network, a women's empowerment organisation and a platform for women to engage and explore Europe's legal cannabis market. Jasmin speaks at conferences and events globally. She is also an angel investor, and is currently navigating towards building an all in one solution app for women’s health.
Can you tell us more about your career?
My personal experience being diagnosed with the autoimmune condition multiple sclerosis in 2015 has since led and significantly impacted my professional experience and passions. It has since then been my mission to make sure I am empowering women around the world on their wellness journey and we do this through Ohana CBD, which is an all natural skincare regime that utilizes clinically proven plant based actives and CBD to provide functional and efficacious skincare that puts your wellbeing first.
How has being a dyslexic woman of colour impacted your career, if at all?
Being dyslexic and a woman of colour has impacted my career in separate, distinct ways. Being dyslexic has limited my career in how long it takes me to put out self branding and profiling content because of the fear around misspelling and grammar. I often get anxious about putting out content in public that I know could really help me and others, but firstly, the fear holds me back and secondly, it's time consuming. I have to get other people around me to correct my mistakes and then send it back to me, which is really long. Being a women of colour is totally different. Your direct nature, tone of of voice, approach to work and comfort in the workplace can be seen as really challenging. The constant battle to try and fit into a culture and a non-diverse team that you don't feel comfortable with - I’ve found really challenging in the past and really limiting in terms of how far I can progress.
Do you think your career as a neurodivergent women lends well to being a founder?
I do think Neurodivergent individuals lend well to being founders and there are several benefits that come to mind, like innovative thinking, the tendency to think outside the box and come up with creative solutions to problems that others may not have considered. These can be a valuable assets in entrepreneurship, where the ability to innovate and find novel solutions can set a business apart from its competitors. My ability to hyperfocus: really zoning in helps me power through challenging projects and tasks that others might find tedious or overwhelming. Thirdly and most importantly, I’m highly passionate and have a strong sense of determination that drives me to succeed despite obstacles and setbacks.
How do you feel about your career so far?
I am an incredibly ambitious person with incredibly high standards for where I want myself to be and where I see my career going in certain timelines, so I find this a difficult question to answer! I am really glad with where my career started and feel like it gave me a solid range of skills to leverage into my role as a founder and having the fundamentals of having an incredible work ethic. When I look at Ohana, I am continuously trying to be more proud of what I’ve achieved and again it’s provided the perfect platform for the next level of my career in investment and giving me the network and experience to hit the ground. What I feel most proud of is my ability to try new things, not be scared of no and to put myself forward for ambitious situations and positions that I know I will one day be able to execute with ease.
What are your hopes for the future?
Wherever my career takes me, I’ve discovered I really, really enjoy and feel 100% satisfaction and happiness in being of service and helping others. Specifically early stage founders trying to navigate building these great tech platforms that are going to make our world of tomorrow a better place.