Welcome to the weekly series ‘How I got my job as…’ where we speak to some incredible entrepreneurs and businesswomen both based in the UAE and globally to find out about their career paths that led them to where they are now; what their daily routines look like; the advice they’d give to those starting out; and the hurdles they’ve had to overcome.
This week we chat with Christiana Maxion, the founder and CEO of Match & Meet. Known for revamping the Dubai dating scene, she launched her own matchmaking agency that offers unlimited matchmaking memberships for her clients.
With a database of more than 40k members, Maxion has the largest GCC and Global database of female C-level executives, lawyers, entrepreneurs and models. To go through a careful scrutiny, each potential match is thoroughly vetted, interviewed and approved.
Since launching more than 1000’s of happy couples have been matched and the memberships even include additional services such as a relationship psychologist, rapid transformational therapy, professional photos, styling and more.
To understand her journey as a dating coach, spoke to her to see how it all began and how she brings her expertise to the table.
What was your favourite subject at school?
I was a straight-A student in high school and went to a top university to study finance. I loved math because there was always a right or wrong answer. There was no grey area or things up for interpretation. But, in all honesty, I learned the most from life experiences rather than traditional schooling.
What was your first job?
I was a springboard diving coach. I used to travel the world and compete and was recruited to dive for the University of Notre Dame but incurred a career-ending injury my sophomore year. I studied Finance at university and did an internship with Merrill Lynch but decided to switch industries and get my Master’s in Education; inspired by my love for coaching and working with young kids. I taught first grade and kindergarten in the South Bronx before taking a KG1 teaching position in Abu Dhabi in 2016.
What brought you to Dubai?
It’s been 7 amazing years in the UAE. I’m a native New Yorker and never thought I would ever leave New York as my entire family lives within five miles of each other, but I fell in love with a boy and gave our relationship a shot, which was the initial reason for my move here. We split in early 2017 and I decided to stay because I saw so much opportunity here. The UAE is really a place where you get promoted based on merit rather than longevity and if you take action, you can build anything you can dream of. Seven years and three businesses later, I’m here in Dubai and never leaving!
What inspired you to enter the matchmaking space?
It all started with a comedic Instagram account. I started documenting my dating experience in 2020 and people were really drawn to my empowered dating standpoint of dating with high standards and low expectations. Plus, it was a bit cheeky so it gained some popularity. I noticed that people hated dating in Dubai (I absolutely love it) and would constantly request dating and relationship advice. I’ve always been a solution seeker and saw a need in the market for an alternative to what was currently out there. In all honesty, the most amazing people I have ever met have been living in the UAE and I wanted to be the bridge that connected them. With the introduction of new long-term visas, the amazing way the UAE dealt with the pandemic, and new laws promoting more freedom in dating and partnership, I decided to consult a legal team about the legalities of opening a professional matchmaking business here in Dubai. I got the green light in 2021 and we are now Christiana Maxion Solutions offering elite matchmaking for high-net-worth men in Dubai, London, and globally with a 96% success rate and a 40k+ database. I feel like I’ve already lived eight different lives and I’m only 34!
Talk us through the concept of being a matchmaker.
Our clients hire us because they are time poor and sick and tired of wasting time, effort and energy with the wrong people. They hire us to expedite the entire dating process to find their ideal partner in the most optimized timeline and environment! It’s basically outsourcing your love life to an expert that delivers results! The feedback from our clients is the heart of what I do! When you match clients with their future partners after they have been struggling for years or just missing the mark, their success fills my heart. I absolutely LOVE it!
What are the key elements of your role?
The key to being an excellent matchmaker is not only understanding the modern dating world of the 2020s and having impeccable EQ, but also an extensive network and resources to find the perfect partners for your client. We are a small team of six elite matchmakers who match VIP singles for love not only in Dubai, but globally. Our clients and members trust us because of our amazing stats. We have a success rate of over 95 percent, with over 30 plus years of matchmaking experience, a database of 40k plus members, 100’s of marriages made and over 1000’s of happy couples marries.We have flawless systems that guarantee a successful partnership with our unlimited matchmaking memberships of three to nine months in Dubai and worldwide. So to be a part, you apply to be a client and apply for a screening call via christianamaxion.com. If accepted after a background check, we invite you for a screening call to assess whether or not our service is right for you. Then a preliminary match session takes place. If we believe we can help you find success, we will invite you for a (paid) video call to present you with qualified potential matches from our current database. This is an opportunity for you to give us feedback on your preferences and see your matchmaking candidates before securing a package. We use this call to assess how well we will get on as a matchmaker and client. After accepting a formal contract with an offer is sent across. Our current retainer fees for unlimited matchmaking packages range from $25,000 – $120,000 USD. Then the dating process begins. The more you date, the more curated the experience becomes to find your results, which is why we offer unlimited matchmaking opportunities during your membership. Later there’s a 360 ELEVATION (hands-on approach) where some clients will choose a more hands-on approach, which is my customized 360 elevation process. This can be anything from rapid transformational therapy, personal training, nutritional meal plan packages, personal styling, dental, coaching, and more! And, some clients prefer a more hands-off approach with only interviewing, vetting and curating the dating process. All packages include planning, booking, confirming dates, managing communication and feedback to optimize the matchmaking experience. We are in a very fortunate enough position where we get to choose our clients, which is why our success rate is so high.
Talk us through your daily routine.
No two days are the same, but I always make time for fitness. Whether tennis, golf, weightlifting, yoga or pilates. A healthy body leads to a clear mind which leads to great decision making and execution. Days can be filled with interviewing potential matches, planning dates, picking up gifts for dates for clients, booking services for clients (360 elevation), events, and all things that go into my new venture: building my app MAXION: Match & Meet
What advice do you have for anyone looking to follow in the same footsteps?
Apply to be on my team! I am currently expanding my team in the UAE and UK and looking to add ambitious women with outstanding personalities and a passion for connection. You can apply here.
What is the best piece of advice you have ever received?
No means try harder or you’re asking the wrong person. Remember, you only need one yes to make something happen. My dad ingrained in my brain from an early age that there’s nothing worse in this world than wasted talent. I always strive to be outstanding.
And what is the worst?
Don’t pay yourself a salary.
What’s the biggest challenge you have had to overcome?
Expanding my services into the tech world, building my app and being a first-time tech founder! All of the pains and lessons learned from failed co-founders, people taking advantage of you and underestimating you. But I love it! Tell me I can’t do something… the hate fuels me and inspires me to be outstanding in all that I do. I’m going to be a billionaire by 40.
What’s your future for the brand?
The incredible success and high demand of the core business of matchmaking HNWI has led to the creation of my app MAXION: Match & Meet. MAXION: Match & Meet is the first AI-Powered Social Matchmaking Concierge for ambitious individuals in expat-dominated cities in the GCC. Birthed from the 96% success rate of my core business of matchmaking high net worth individuals across the globe, MAXION will serve a much wider audience and create an exclusive space designed for accomplished and ambitious individuals to meet compatible friends and partners. We are mastering compatibility and concierge, so all you have to focus on is connection. In a city like Dubai, where you outsource everything, why not outsource your social life to the experts. www.themaxion.com And a television show.