Dara Fairman, founder of Simple Better Solutions, My Future, My Success, and My Time, My Way is a successful businesswoman, who is committed to helping others fulfill their dreams. As a wife to Ruben, and mother of two children, Maxwell, 15 and Haviland, 12, she is also devoted to giving back to the community by leading local programs for youth, like the work she does for the EXPERIENCE children.
“I know that what I’m doing is making a difference, and I’m really changing people’s lives in a way that matters,” Fairman said.
Fairman splits her time between the Boys & Girls Club of Hamilton’s two locations – at 2020 Grand Blvd. and 958 East Ave. She works with 2nd through 6th-grade students each month, alternating between both locations, during the school year. The one-hour, program runs September through May (and is held every other month at each location.)
A few years ago in May of 2016, Fairman was invited by Experience Life Connected founders Krista and Bret Parrish to be a guest speaker at a one-day camp experience at Camp Campbell Gard, where she opened the program by sharing some of the concepts from her My Time, My Way program. Students learned about topics like goals, who they are and time management in a fun, interactive way.
“We learned how to create a profile, meaning, understanding who you are, and based on who you are, how to create goals, meaning what they want to achieve,” she said.
In her work with the children at Boys & Girls Club of Hamilton through a partnership with Experience Life Connected, kids continue to learn these principles as well as how to track their goals and they create a vision board to hang up that reminds them of what they want to accomplish. Fairman said the workshop also incorporates guest speakers, who all have one thing in common, “They are a kid, who is doing something remarkable.”
She said one guest speaker was her son, Maxwell the Violinist. At the age of 12 years old, he led a chamber group that performed for Michelle Obama at the White House. He talked to the participants about how he focuses on accomplishing his goal of being a professional violinist and the steps he takes to achieve his goals.
“He came and talked about what it was like to perform at the White House, and also what it is like to be a violinist,” Fairman said.
When she leads each workshop, Fairman said her daughter, Haviland, 12, takes all of the photos, “They see her as a kid, accomplishing her goal of being a photographer as a young kid. She’s there at every session. So, we not only create our own profiles, create goals, track goals and create vision boards, but they interact with these other kids, and it gives them visuals of people who are young and successful at doing something, simply by stating, ‘This is what I’m going to focus on.’”
“As I teach them how to connect those dots between who they are, their profile or persona, what they want to achieve with their goals and how they spend their time, these are invaluable lessons that are going to carry them through life. So, they can do whatever it is that they set out to do. They don’t have to wait to succeed,” Fairman said.
About 8 to 12 children attend each session and they are selected to participate in the Experience Life Connected program, based on various criteria such as their behavior and working hard in school.
“They are great kids. We work together, and they are really enjoying it. They give me a sense of fulfillment. I’m doing something that’s greater than myself,” Fairman said. “You can tell by their expressions, words of thanks and the hugs, that the students are having a great time participating. I also teach them that their goals are valued and they are important.”
The principles from Fairman’s My Time, My Way program can be taught to both children and adults. Fairman graduated in the top of her class from Hampton University. As a 20-something, after going on to earn an MBA from the University of Michigan’s Ross School of Business, Fairman enjoyed a flourishing career in corporate marketing, where she led numerous campaigns in brand management, retail and corporate marketing for several name-brand companies, such as Pepsi and Sara Lee. Fairman took a break from corporate marketing when her children were younger. Fairman relaunched her career with a fresh, professional focus as a time management strategist once her children were in school and she created her own company in 2012.
“I learned a philosophy from Ruben, ‘Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life (from Confucius). So, I decided with my career relaunch that I was going to do things a little bit differently. I decided that the job that I would love would be to create my own opportunity, which is Simple Better Solutions, LLC. The whole point, the whole goal, the whole purpose and the whole why behind Simple Better Solutions is to bring fun and simplicity to goals and time management,” Fairman said.
She said there are three brands within the company – Simple Better Solutions, My Time, My Way and My Future, My Success. Courses are taught through in-person workshops as well as online. She also works with organizations and business leaders to meet their needs. To find out more, visit www.simplebettersolutions.com or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
In addition to running her company, spending time with family, and working with EXPERIENCE Life Connected of Hamilton, Fairman is a contributor to Working Mom’s Against Guilt. She is an ambassador for the West Chester/Liberty Chamber Alliance and is a mentor/coach for the Black Career Women’s Network. She also serves on the Multicultural Awareness Council (MAC) Board for the Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra and is an active member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc. in addition to managing the careers of her kids, Maxwell the musician and Haviland the photographer, athlete, and scientist. She and her family reside in Forest Park.
EXPERIENCE was founded to expose children from the Boys & Girls Club of Hamilton to activities they otherwise would not have the opportunity to enjoy, such as:
• going to camp • archery • canoeing • exploring the wilderness • zip lining • horseback riding • swimming • sitting around a campfire • going to the theater • taking a tennis lesson • participating in an art class • visiting the zoo • going to watch a Reds or Bengals game • walking on a college campus