My first 12 months as Dutch Business Woman of the Year have come to an end. It has been an honor and a pleasure to be a role model for Dutch girls and women to ‘dream, dare and do!’. I’m sure my successor Aukje Kuypers will continue to inspire them to succeed, especially now The Business Woman of the year-title is getting more and more recognized outside the corporate world.
As I was getting ready to wrap up this whirlwind of a year, the brightest star in science, Stephen Hawking, passed away. I am no expert in quantum physics, but I admire how Hawking had the guts to throw the rule book of physics out of the window and trust his instincts instead. This enabled him to think outside of the box and make those exciting discoveries about black holes and the origin of the universe! I feel that this is something we all should do. Life is much better without the rigor of rules and schematics, which is also one of the key points in my newly published book in Dutch ‘Het lef om gelukkig te zijn’ (‘The guts to be happy’). For me, professionally and privately it works much better to act on my intuition and find my own way, than trying to fit in prefab frameworks.
Back to being ‘just’ a business woman, I keep on dreaming about a world with women in many key positions. And doing something about it, of course. I am very much looking forward to the third edition of the Young Lady Business Academy, this upcoming July 2nd to 6th. With a group of Dutch power ladies we push young women to dream big, encourage them to overcome doubts and fears and teach them how to make their ambitions come true. Searching for those bright stars and uncovering their talents gets me as excited as a scientist over a singularity!
Since my passing on the title of Business Woman of the year, people have been asking me if I am afraid to ‘fall into a black hole’. This is the Dutch way of expressing concern over if I am going to find something else to keep me busy. My reply to this is that the black hole will have to wait, because during the year my dreams for women have only grown bigger. And I have a million new questions for which I will have to discover the answers.
I have not arrived anywhere yet, my journey has just begun!