Going Against The Grain: Yasmeen Tadia

Yasmeen Tadia Photo

Yasmeen Tadia is a 32 year-old single mother, with more than 10 years of Human Resources and Business Management experience. In her last role, she was the Corporate Director of Human Resources for the largest hotel management company in New York City, where she managed hotels all over the world from an HR perspective.

Yasmeen Tadia has transformed standard-issue, carnival cotton candy into a completely new and gourmet, flavor-packed experience—and a low-calorie, vegan and gluten-free one, at that. The entrepreneurial vision behind the sweet Fluffpop pouf was actually born out of her desire to provide a healthier candy alternative for her sugar-loving young son Zain—which also instantly made this single mom the CEO of fun for her son.

Fluffpop™, HotPoppin™, and The Mini Mason™ product lines are part of Yasmeen’s Make Your Life Sweeter® Company. It’s also a motto she lives by, endeavoring to make a sweet impact on the lives of others while supporting a variety of charitable initiatives. Yasmeen’s philanthropic passion has enticed her to create a non-profit organization that she hopes will inspire others, as well as give her son the opportunity of interacting with those less fortunate than him. The non-profit organization is called Random Acts of Sweetness® and will launch in the Winter of 2014 with her #spreadingsweetness campaign.

In addition to her SWEET endeavors of Fluffpop & HotPoppin, Yasmeen also runs HR Evolved, a consulting firm geared towards fueling her passion for Human Resources, Entrepreneurship, and Strategic Management.


Full Name: Yasmeen Tadia
Born: Johannesburg, South Africa
Raised: Richardson, Texas
Current City: Plano, Texas
Ethnicity: Indian

What does it mean to you to “Go Against The Grain?”
“Going Against the Grain” to me is doing something outside the box. Challenging myself to “think differently” has been a practice that I have lived by for many years. Even during my career in Human Resources, I worked to develop a culture that was not typical for most corporate environments. I encouraged leaders to think differently by challenging themselves to think outside the box when handling situations. Today, I challenge the culinary world by going “against the grain,” taking experiences from our childhood and turning them into adult delicacies with Fluffpop & Hotpoppin.

What made you decide to pursue your career path?
My son Zain. I wanted a better life for both of us. My career in Human Resources and moving up the corporate ladder was always my dream, but when I turned 30 and Zain turned 3, I realized that it was not the optimal career path for me as a single mom. I always felt as though I were missing something in my life. The ability to create my own path allows me to challenge myself in ways that were not possible in Corporate America.

What have been some of the challenges you faced/lessons you learned as an Asian American in this field?
As a single mom and as an Asian American, I face challenges every single day. I have learned:

  • You never get a second chance for a first impression. “Life is not a dress rehearsal.”
  • You should surround yourself with those who are better than you.
  • Grow your emotional intelligence through challenging yourself with new experiences.
  • Embrace and engage regularly with mentors of all ages and races.
  • Read books that will help you grow in the areas which your feel are deficient.
  • Foster relationships with everyone. It’s not just about the business deal; it’s about meeting new people who have the capability of impacting your life in a positive way.

What do you feel is your biggest accomplishment and why?
My biggest accomplishment would have to be the ability to leave my 10-year career in Corporate America to live my dream of becoming an entrepreneur. The day I decided to take the leap of faith and go “against the grain” was one of the scariest days of my life. Being a single mom who has never relied on anyone financially, my biggest fear was failure.

What’s up next?
Growing the Make Your Life Sweeter ® brand by adding new product lines. Also launching more innovative ideas for Fluffpop Gourmet Cotton Candy and Hotpoppin’ Gourmet Popcorn.

Quote to Live By:
“To laugh often and much;
to win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children;
to earn the appreciation of honest critics and to endure the betrayal of false friends;
to appreciate beauty;
to find the best in others;
to leave the world a bit better whether by a healthy child, a garden patch or a redeemed social condition;
to know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived.
This is to have succeeded.”
~~ Ralph Waldo Emerson

Sign (Eastern Animal and Western Zodiac): Cancer/Dog

Passionate About:
I am passionate about making the world a better place. I am working on creating a non-profit called Random Acts of Sweetness®. In addition to spreading sweetness with random acts of kindness, the goal of the organization will also be to celebrate those who do good things for others without expecting anything in return. I want to embrace a society where we encourage good people to continue doing good things to make the world a better place. It doesn’t cost money; it could be a smile, a helping hand, or even a piece of advice that could change someone else’s life.

Favorite Food:
After my mom’s amazing South African/Indian food, I love sushi!

Can’t Live Without…
My parents and my son. Through all the challenges that I been through in my life, I would never be where I am today without their unconditional love and support.

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