Interested in starting your own entrepreneurial journey in health and wellness but unsure what to expect? Then read up on our interview with Dallas Barnes, founder, and CEO of Reya Health, located in London, ON, Canada.
What's your business, and who are your customers?
Reya is a digital platform for personalized reproductive health counseling and support - starting with birth control! There is a major crisis within women’s health that is not being addressed. Birth control is continually misprescribed. This then leads to a grueling trial and error process where 75% of women describe their experience with contraceptives negatively. The process takes an average of 2 years and can be extremely harmful to a person’s well-being. Many people report unexpected side effects, feeling dismissed by their healthcare provider, and feeling a lack of support altogether. We make navigating birth control easy and effective. Our smart algorithms utilize in-depth user profiles to match members with birth control solutions. Our Birth Control Boundary tracking system supports users in managing any side effects or symptoms. Reya is available to all Canadian birth control users and uterus owners!
Tell us about yourself
I'm Dallas, the Founder and CEO of Reya Health, and I started on this entrepreneurial journey because I needed a solution. My experience trying to find the right birth control option was far from fun. I tried over five different options and experienced negative side effects for years while trying to navigate these options. One option, in particular, my body reacted so adversely to it, I was admitted to the hospital. This was the last straw for me, and about the time that I started working on the solution, I wished I had. That then grew into what Reya is today. With Reya, I want to support people in accessing information that is relevant to their unique situation so that they can make confident choices for their own health. The bottom line is that everyone's health journey is unique. We should celebrate that and make space for it. As a team, Reya aims to meet people where they are and provide the support that is personalized and helpful! Our philosophy is that contraceptive counseling goes beyond covering options and their side effects. It includes conversations about your personal habits, relationships, and how you make space for yourself. Contraceptive counseling isn't just for pregnancy prevention. It can be a means of learning about your body and getting in touch with your natural rhythms. I don't know about you, but this gets me excited!
What's your biggest accomplishment as a business owner?
Short answer: starting a business. Founding a company and sticking with it has been the hardest thing I've done. I'm constantly learning and being put into situations where I know more about myself and grow. I'm proud of that. However, I think the ultimate accomplishment for me has been connecting with people and being able to provide them with a solution that enables health autonomy and supports their journeys.
What's one of the hardest things that come with being a business owner?
The uncertainty. Nothing about owning a business is linear, and that can be exhausting. New and unexpected problems arise daily. As the leader of multiple teams, you must pivot often and quickly while keeping your team engaged and excited about these pivots. Understanding that there are some things out of your control and that it's okay has been something I've had to grapple with.
What are the top tips you'd give to anyone looking to start, run and grow a business today?
- Get people you trust in your corner. Owning a business is tough, and we all need someone to lean on. Personally and professionally!
- Celebrate the wins. Especially the small wins! They keep you and your team going.
- Don't be afraid to ask questions (never stop asking questions) and seek help. Teamwork makes the dream work!
Is there anything else you'd like to share?
Our goal is to help people have the best experience with birth control and family planning. We're always here to help new members and also continue having in-depth conversations with as many women as possible. Continue to spread the word and direct women who are interested in our mission to sign up at https://www.reyahealth.ca or join our growing community online! We'd also love to hear from you! Please reach out if anyone has a birth control story they want to share anonymously with our community (or openly!) or just with us. We're here to listen and grow the conversation.
Where can people find you and your business?
If you like what you've read here and have your own story as a solopreneur that you'd like to share, then email firstname.lastname@example.org; we'd love to feature your journey on these pages.
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