"What I do best: Sensing for solutions, encouraging, networking, moderating and building inspiring learning environments."

Personal aspects

What do you have to take with you to make your holiday perfect?

My coffee essentials: fresh espresso, a cafetière and a milk frother.

What talent would you like to possess?

I would like to be more introspective, reflective and spiritual. Life has so many exciting possibilities for interaction that I just don’t get round to it.

What was the greatest adventure you’ve had so far?

A job in South Sudan for GTZ in 2005. Along with a peacekeeping expert and an expert in vocational training, we were to find out what needs there were and what opportunities following the civil war. The latter got kidney stones and the former had malaria really badly. Luckily we had stand-by medicine. We went there twice. Once before and once after John Garang was killed in a helicopter crash. The peace treaty had just been signed the first time we were there and the atmosphere was positive. After his death the mood in the country was very threatening, there were curfews and security vehicles for the shortest journey. It was in charge of the expedition and was responsible for writing a report at the end. I was 28 years old and found it a real challenge. But we managed it.

What is your motto where work is concerned?

“That’s how it works – and it also works like that!”

What book has left a lasting impression on you?

What Color is your Parachute? by Richard Nelson Bolles. I read this book on the long-haul flight to Ghana where I moved in 2004 with my husband. The most important thing I took from it is: ‘If you don’t have a job, then your job is to spend 8 hours a day looking for one.’ You can apply that to clients, interesting jobs, successful training, new projects, etc. It took a month to find a job there. For me, this book was the foundation stone of an entrepreneur. 

Your favourite childhood memory?

Riding on my own through the huge garden at my grandparents’ farm on a Shetland pony. I was about 5 years old, the pony was well-behaved and my grandfather was keeping a loving eye on me from the terrace whilst drinking a cup of tea and having a cigarette.

What do you forgive easily?

Slight lack of punctuality. I do not like it if people turn up earlier than expected.

What urgently needs to be invented?

Simple and practical ways to protect your own private sphere whilst still interacting with the digital world, e.g., the ability to have simple passwords, to outwit nasty algorithms, a smart phone that cannot be hacked into …

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