Being pushed beyond what I’m comfortable with has allowed me to thrive in my profession, and I credit a number of people for having influence and
impact on my career and leadership style.

I started my career in customer service. My experiences with customer service have impacted the rest of my career. The needs of customers, both internal and external, and stakeholders, both personal and professional, are at the forefront of what I do. It is crucial to build strong and trust-based relationships with those around me so that I have the chance to make and learn from my mistakes, which have, in turn, made me stronger and smarter, and most importantly, a better leader.

The men and women that I have the opportunity to work with on a daily basis motivate and encourage me to always seek new opportunities, no matter how difficult the challenge may be.

I allow myself to make mistakes, and I embrace those mistakes, learning and growing from each. I am fortunate to have encouragement and support from my colleagues, family, and friends, all of whom continuously inspire me to be true to myself, and more importantly, constantly challenge me to be an authentic leader.

How has education affected your career?

My personal experiences have had a profound impact on me: My upbringing in Africa, Dutch background, my many travels growing up, parents and friends, and education. With these experiences, I feel I have been able to establish a well-rounded, experiential foundation of knowledge that has guided my career.

Is there a role model who has had a profound impact on your career and/or life? What did he/she motivate you to do?

My mother and father shaped who I am: My mother is the business achiever and my father was the artist and dreamer. Being surrounded and influenced by their unique and sometimes opposing personality traits enabled me to recognize and balance my own strengths, stay true to myself, and be authentic in how I live and work every day.