After saying au revoir to France, Orlane Fagnoni fell in love with Singapore and set up her diet consultancy here. She now calls Singapore home…

What’s your story?
My name is Orlane. I am from Paris and I bid a temporary “au revoir” to France about four years ago and followed my elder sister who was based in Singapore. I fell in love with this magnificent city state and I instantly knew I would go a long way here. I wanted to become a dietitian when I was growing up. We all wish to live a long and healthy life, avoiding diseases and staying young forever. However there is a huge difference between wishing and achieving. I made this career choice keeping in mind I had to educate people on how the body works in relationship to food.

In January 2015, I founded Oh My Diet! It is a company dealing in diet consultancy that provides private consultation on weight management, health improvement and lifestyle coaching via face to face meetings and dietetic expertise for corporates and specific missions.

What excites you most about your industry?
I love the diversity of needs that could be solved by nutritional support. Something that excites me the most about my industry is the ability to feel helpful and never get bored.

What’s your connection to Asia?
It is a family story. My elder sister came here five years ago and encouraged me to visit her. It was probably the best holiday of my life. I remember enjoying a Christmas party on Sentosa beach and I felt so lucky to have come to Singapore. Honestly, I had absolutely no knowledge about Asian culture. It took me only six months to call Singapore home. And the rest we say is history.

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Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
I may sound biased but so far Singapore. I hadn’t started a business venture anywhere else so it is what I know. I am also happy to have this opportunity in Singapore. Despite being on my toes all the time, I have been able to strike a perfect balance between my professional and personal life.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
“Think before you leap.” When someone starts a project, they quickly realise that it’s not going to be a piece of cake. Life opens many doors, and out of excitement you tend to get carried away. We tend to immediately say “yes” to any opportunity that comes our way which is not necessarily healthy for all businesses. With my four plus years experience in Singapore, I have seen many companies losing their initial identity because of this. I stick to my rules and this is what keeps me going.

Who inspires you?
I can’t think of just one person who inspires me. I am inspired by the Global Health Mission. I am also lucky to have endless support from my family and especially my boyfriend who has been a great support for me.

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
There are 7,500 varieties of apples grown throughout the world and if you tried a new variety each day, it would take you 20 years to try them all. Let’s start today!

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I don’t believe in regretting choices. In any startup you take the risk of making mistakes and then you try harder each day to find a better way to achieve your goals. All my mistakes taught me unforgettable lessons, especially how to manage patient expectations. If you misunderstand their needs you lose them. You have to persevere and go an extra mile to make the journey interesting.

How do you unwind?
I find it really hard to unplug my brain from work’s worries. The only way I have found I can do this is through sport activities and reading. My favourite way to unwind is cooking. For me, cooking is the perfect combination of relaxing and treating my loved ones.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
I wish I could travel every weekend to discover a new amazing place in Asia but due to time constraints my favourite destination remains Bali. You rent a villa, rent a scooter, chill and forget your hectic schedule.

Everyone in business should read this book:
Who Moved My Cheese? A way to deal with change in your work and in your life, by Spencer Johnson.

Shameless plug for your business:
Are you looking for weight management ? Do you need someone who understands your needs and will create a tailor made program for you? Or maybe you are a professional and your new mission is to request a nutritional expertise? Oh My Diet is the right service for you, providing private consulting or corporate expertise.

How can people connect with you?
You can mail me directly at [email protected] or connect with me on Linkedin.

Twitter handle?
You can tweet me @OMDsingapore

This interview was part of the Callum Connect’s column found on The Asian Entrepreneur:

CallumConnects

Callum Laing invests and buys small businesses in a range of industries around Asia.  He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is the founder & owner of Fitness-Buffet a company delivering employee wellness solutions in 12 countries.  He is a Director of, amongst others, Key Person of Influence.  A 40 week training program for business owners and executives.

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