Meet Muheeb he created a social enterprise dedicated to promoting diversity

It all started with a goal to chat to entrepreneurs over 60. Then out of curiosity we decided to talk to entrepreneurs under 30. We believe these two very vast generations can learn and grow from each other. 

This week we visit Brisbane Australia and chat with Muheeb Hoque founder of the Pluralist a social enterprise dedicated to promoting diversity of language and culture through watches.

 Can you tell us a little about your business and what you do?

The Pluralist was founded in 2016 as a social enterprise with a mission to sell watches with a social message of acceptance and pluralism. Bringing different people together through one-of-a-kind timepieces. The Pluralist aspires to spark conversation and to showcase true diversity. Since, The Pluralist is a social enterprise, it was important to sell a product with a message of acceptance and to give back to the community. A portion of each watch sale is donated to a local Australian charity. Currently, we are supporting the Asylum Seeker Resource Centre.

Each Pluralist watch design is inspired by a different language and culture. The human race is extraordinarily diverse in so many ways. Ethnicity, religion, language, nationality, philosophy, lifestyle. The areas in which we differ are endless. Yet, we are all of the same human species, as we like to call it the human family. Our common pains and joys are what bring us together, but our diversity makes us unique. The Pluralist exists to promote, accept and appreciate the richness of differences that exist in our human family.

What motivated you to start your own business?

My thirst to make a positive difference and contribution to society is what motivated me to start my own business and particularly my own social enterprise.

Growing up in different countries, I have always been fascinated by different cultures and languages. I love travelling and exploring new parts of the world, discovering new perspectives on things.

I’m a watch lover! I am always looking for unique timepieces that combine style and quality. For me watches are more than a time teller, its a philosophy and a lifestyle.

What were some of the struggles you faced when you first started?

The hardest aspect of starting the Pluralist was to bootstrap the business by myself. My background is in Marketing and Sales and as such I had to teach myself a lot about website development and designing which was a challenging learning curve. I have to add however hard starting the project was, I thoroughly enjoyed the journey and am very excited about the future.

What do you like most about having your own business?

The best part about having my own business is the fact that my work is what I am passionate about. The ability to utilise my business skills to create a positive difference in society. Also, being able to make my own decisions and hold myself accountable for the success or failure of the business motivates me.

What advice would you give to your younger self?

My advice to a younger self would be to learn to get better at time management. Time is the only thing finite in our world and it is crucial that we learn to use time efficiently. So, definitely time management is crucial for entrepreneurs and new business owners.

Who is an older person that you admire and why?

I am a big admirer of the Bangladeshi social entrepreneur, banker and economist Muhammad Yunus. He founded the Grameen Bank and pioneered the concepts of microcredit and micro finance for which he won the noble peace prize.

These micro loans has allowed a very large number of people from the developing world to lift themselves out of poverty. Today Muhammad Yunus is a great advocate of social business and I am a big believer in his mission that businesses can be for profit and still thrive to make a positive difference.

If you could jump into a time machine what era would you visit and why?

If I could go back in time I would visit 2700 B.C when the first stone pyramid was built. I am fascinated by the pyramids and the old and middle kingdom periods.

Personally, I am big fan of hieroglyphs and I would use the opportunity to learn to read hieroglyphs.

Anything else you would like to add?

I would like to leave the audience with the following advice. If you have a business idea say it out loud. If you have an idea my advice would be to start talking about it with friends, families, colleagues, anyone and everyone.