I see an attractive young woman entrepreneur under 30. She does what she likes and has her own successful business despite the military conflict in her native land and forced relocation. But was it always like that? Who knows what this strong-willed woman had to go through?
Unfortunately, our society doesn't always remember that there's no magic pill that can effortlessly take you from your cramped cell to the free world of entrepreneurship. Some nurture the dream of becoming their own boss for years before it bears the first fruits.
Tetiana Isaieva is the founder and owner of the renowned TRINITY Education Group in the capital of Ukraine — Kyiv. The TRINITY Foreign Language Business School is a training center for anyone who wants to know foreign languages at a high level. The school has trained and prepared about 17,000 students for international exams. The center employs 25 qualified teachers with the most effective teaching methods and has 42 types of English language courses.
Today, this language center is thriving , successfully fending off competition by hundreds of language training centers in Kyiv. It has a good reputation among the students, teachers, and international companies as Mitsubishi Motors Corporation, Metinvest, Royal Canin, ERSTE Bank, Boosta, PDFfiller, KRKA, GIZ, British American Tobacco and others. It continues to grow and develop, but it didn't start out that way.
TRINITY Education Group was founded in Donetsk in 2011 by an ambitious young woman named Tetiana. Now Donetsk city is a household name worldwide, but it was an industrial mining town with over one million people. Located in the city center, the TRINITY Language School was very popular with the locals. Within a year of its existence, the center had already succeeded in obtaining several international certificates and would undoubtedly have become a leader among the private educational establishments in the city, but the hostilities of 2014 in eastern Ukraine ruined all the possible chances.
Could you imagine what it's like to see the pet project you've worked so hard on, with patience and love, crumbling around you? It seems like you're just having a nightmare where an aggressor is attacking civilians, and you have to hastily retreat to a safer place, leaving your cozy home and well-established business. But sadly, that's not a bad dream that ends as soon as the alarm clock goes off. It's a reality from which no one will save you except yourself. Militants broke into the city, occupied it, looted its population, established their order, and proclaimed the once hometown as the Donetsk People's Republic. The life of the civilians turned into a living hell. All dreams were crushed overnight. People lived- if life is the appropriate term- taking one day at a time and without plans for tomorrow because they didn't know if they were going to survive or end up accidentally shot in the street while invaders seized another administrative building.
Staying in Donetsk and waiting for the military conflict to be over soon wasn't an option. Tetiana made the painful but only correct decision to close the school and move to a peaceful territory.
The choice fell on Kyiv, the capital of Ukraine, where every year thousands of students from all over Ukraine and adults come in search of a better future . In 2014, Mrs. Isaieva was one of the many optimistic girls who believed that this city of opportunities would welcome her with open arms. In general, Kyiv is hospitable to tourists, but if you are a young entrepreneur intending to set up your own business, the city can swallow you when you show your weakness.
To make your way, you have to work hard, not cry, and not complain about life. Tetiana is a hard nut to crack.
It only seems that in a city with a population of a few million, you can quickly realize everything you've planned. In fact, the reality is very harsh. That year, 300,000 people from the occupied territories came to Kyiv and other cities of Ukraine. The residents, who had always been friendly, hated the refugees, accusing them of being guilty for what was happening in their native lands and for taking their working places.
Strange city, strong pressure from society, not being able to come back to your hometown…That sounds terrible enough on paper, and it's even worse in reality. Overcoming mental breakdown, Mrs. Isaieva pulled herself together, and during the following years, she made TRINITY a famous and respectable language center.
Only those who built their businesses up from scratch without influential relatives and friends will understand how difficult it was for this fragile girl. The circumstances didn't break Tetiana's spirit! With her sleeves rolled up, she started to build her school from the ground up: writing a business plan, looking for an office, going through a long and tiring bureaucratic procedure to get a business permit in Kyiv, buying office (since almost nothing could be taken out of the militia-controlled territory), hiring a staff of teachers and recruiting students.
Mrs. Isaieva was lucky enough to rent an office on a business avenue in Kyiv, which is situated 300 meters from the main lane of Kyiv — Khreshchatyk. At that time, about 300 similar language centers were already working in the Ukrainian capital, and some were located in neighboring buildings with Tatiana's office. There was a good chance that the business from Donetsk would fail. For this reason, Tetiana should have created a school that stands out from a range of similar centers. Having done her best, she could cope with all the pitfalls and succeed.
TRINITY is currently one of the three largest certified centers for international exam preparation in the Ukrainian capital, with certified teachers. Despite the pandemic COVID-19 and quarantine measures, the center has grown from 300 students to 500 and did well in developing better motivation for students and traction of teacher salaries.
At the moment, most students are employees of leading Ukrainian companies and branches of international corporations located in Ukraine, such as VTB Bank, UkrGasBank, Kone, Metinvest, Levi9 Ukraine, as well as motivated young people who learn the language to study or immigrate to Great Britain, USA, Canada or Australia. Although the terrible 2014 seems a long time ago, there is still an ongoing war in eastern Ukraine. Due to the turbulent situation in Ukraine caused by actions of neighboring states, Tetiana Isaieva is again forced to look for new markets and search for opportunities in another country — the United States of America.
But even in a foreign country, this proactive woman isn't exactly resting on her laurels. She was invited to an American startup company as a CEO and could develop a thriving business community for software developers and entrepreneurs. These days, her American brainchild helps Senior software developers and UI and UI designers from all over the world prepare for the behavioral interviews for FAANG and other TOP companies of the Silicon Valley like Adobe, eBay, Hewlett-Packard, AMD, Intel, and Cisco Systems.After panicked fears and struggles with obstacles, Mrs. Isaieva was on the verge of failure. Instead of giving up, she started developing a strong sense of motivation to reach new heights in business. It turned into a real challenge. After 10 years of working on her own project, Tetiana still sets a task on scaling up her company.
She has formed a great team and now keeps moving ahead. Launching each new project and enjoying its result is like doping for her. Every minute is precious, but she likes this pace of life. Willing to do as much as possible gives her strength.
Through her example, Tetiana shows it's vital to believe in yourself and love what you do. That supports when everything slips from your hands, when it feels as if the whole world is against you. Passion for what you do will always help you recover and not give up. If you strive for something and want it badly, don't stop halfway, bite the bullet, go ahead, and you're sure to succeed.
Today, I see a successful woman whose passion for growth and achieving goals trumps all her fears. Any challenges Tetiana Isaieva faces become great experiences that reveal her true strength.