Gifted game changer talks passion and perspective : Exclusive interview with Tasha Sideris, founder and CEO of Tasha's brand

Know your “why” and stick to your values – no matter what. Sound advice for business and life in general from Tasha Sideris of the highly successful Tasha's brand. Her team members describe her as “Collaborative. Generous. A relentless perfectionist.” Sideris feels that life is all about perspective. Missed opportunities should be thought of as a learning experience and not considered a loss. One thing she knows for sure, is that hard work reaps rewards, and she is living proof of this. With 14 stores in South Africa, and soon to be opening 6 more stores in the Middle East in the next 12 months, Tasha's is growing fast.

Sideris thanks her father for teaching her everything she knows. A successful chef and restauranteur, he was thrilled by giving people great food. Sideris says his passion for food is in her blood. This passion is evidenced by the quality of food and service, beauty of environments, and attention to detail that goes with the Tasha's brand. Each day is a new day for the highly committed team, from head office to franchisees to waiters to kitchen staff, who deliver what they promise. They clearly take what they do very seriously. Sideris believes 100% in her team, which enabled her to take such a leap of faith with expanding so rapidly in Dubai.

According to Sideris, each Tasha's is a little bit different and a little bit the same, allowing for uniqueness and avoiding the “cookie cutter model” that often goes along with franchising. Individual inspiration is the order of the day for the interiors and the food served.

With a wealth of hard earned experience as an inspiring entrepreneur, Sideris has solid tips for her fellow start-ups and entrepreneurs. It's all about knowing your “WHY” and focussing on it no matter what happens. You must do what you are most passionate about and put in your 10,0000 hours doing it. Sideris also advises to look for gaps in the market. Don't let lack of funding stop you – find a way to make things work. Choose the right people to surround yourself with and to set up a great team of likeminded people and partners. Train your team to deliver on your brand. You need to be able to trust in your support group.

Another sound word of advice is to love your customers. This will shine through in the product and service you deliver. Each Tasha's is sophisticated yet homely and welcoming. As does Sideris, define success on your own terms. Sideris' individuality has helped to set her brand apart from competitors. Guests are as constantly surprised as they are pleasantly satisfied.

Sideris shows a very human and approachable side when she says she considers herself too emotional, and admits to being a procrastinator. Hard to imagine her procrastinating with so much hard work and so many achievements under her belt! Perhaps it's this human, individual and welcoming tone that has people flocking to Tasha's, where they can be sure to expect top notch service and food, and a unique experience delivered by a passionate and committed staff. Sideris has clearly remained grounded and hasn't let success change what matters to her, which means quality, standards and individuality will remain an integral part of the Tasha's brand, no matter how much it continues to expand. Her loyal support base won't be disappointed and should continue to grow. We wish her the very best of continued success.

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