This is a 5 minute read 

I have met many successful women from all kinds of industries. All of these women are unique, yet have some qualities that are similar, and I am going to share these with you.


Because I noticed that most women who don’t have their dream job yet, do possess the qualities below, but they aren’t using them all, not using them strategically or hiding them for others.

I am talking about all of these below qualities. Successful women: 

1. Show that they have ambition. 

They don’t think big; they think BIGGER and know how they can make an impact in the world. They see a new and better world and work step by step towards achieving their goals.

2. Have confidence. 

They are not afraid to show their true selves to the world. Successful women believe in themselves and they do what they believe in (they have a purpose). 

3. Focus on their strengths. 

Because most successful women choose their career paths by thinking about what they’re good at first and second about what they love to do AND they are passionate!

4. Are positive

Failure happens and if you want to keep moving forward, you have to get up after disappointments. If a baby falls down when it tries to walk you don’t tell that baby to stay down and that they will never learn to how walk do you? 

5. Focus on getting their shit together. 

They decide what they want to do and then they just do it.

6. Keep learning and growing. 

They are continually improving themselves. They invest in the right tribe of sisters. And they recognize the value of having mentors, sponsors and coaches to help them improve and accelerate in their careers. These women don’t stay static. They work hard and keep moving forward.

7. Are fearless. 

Ask yourself: What would you do if you weren’t afraid? Actually they aren’t completely fearless, they just have the courage to do thing in spite of their fears.

8. Practice self-care. 

They take good physical care of themselves: exercising and eating right and know their boundaries.

9. Are grateful. 

Really successful women know that their success didn’t happen overnight. They are not a one hit wonder but are after a sustainable career. And that is why they know the value of the words: Thank you.

So…. Be honest with yourself: what qualities are you not using, are you hiding or are you not aware of to become the great leader you probably already are or could be? If so, make yourself visible because I keep hearing from (male) leaders they can’t seem to find those women. I know that is bullshit, they are too lazy (pick who they know and people that look like them) and are looking in the wrong places.

But there is another problem: WOMEN DON’T MAKE THEMSELVES VISIBLE!

Have you ever asked yourself this question: what list do I need to get on to accelerate my career? Is it the top 50 of marketeers? The best women in Tech or Finance? Or are you happy with just being the employee of the month? What list do you think will really have an impact?

Or do you think you can make the same impact without being known in the world, the people that should know you or the people who need your special talent?

Maybe you think that through some miracle you will be “discovered”. Pfff, don’t kid yourself girl. There is no magic pill. Not to lose weight and not to have a successful career. Hate to bring it to you like this. Well, actually I don’t because you need to hear this! 

So look back at that list. What do you need to work on? How can I kick your butt to get you moving? How can you get on the list and start building your dream career and having more impact?

What I am trying to tell you is that these are the things that will help you have a more successful career and life. But you have to start moving!! 

It’s your problem if you’re stuck on a certain level. 

You are not a tree, you can move! 

But you’ve got to start telling yourself a different story. And you’ve got to change your environment and support group. You have to start challenging yourself to get out of your comfort zone. Are you addicted to the feeling of doing the things right you are currently already doing right? That won’t make you more successful. It will only keep you in the same role and at the same salary. 

My point? There is a difference between staying stuck there and getting there. So, look at that list again. What do you need to do to get where you truly want to go?

Ask yourself that question. 

What kind of growth do you need right now to become that woman I am looking for?

XOXO, Nancy


5 minute read! 

I am tired AF! And I am mad. And if you feel the same then this message is for you! Even if you are too tired to read further. You know it’s been a while since we spoke, and here I am back to give you my biggest grievance.  

  • I’m tired of hearing from women that they are wasting time in a job they don’t like and are not hired for the jobs they really want.
  • I’m tired of hearing from women that they already do the work but don’t have the title nor the salary that goes with it.
  • I am tired of hearing from women that they have many good ideas but are afraid to make them visible because they think they are too old, too young, too inexperienced whatever.
  • I am tired of hearing from MEN that they can’t find good women to make partners, give top roles and more.
  • And…I am fed up that there is no equality at the top of the business world, because women are really fundamentally different from men, and that inequality leads to decisions being made in business and politics that are mostly driven by greed and more power.

And I am mad that you are probably one of the most talented women in your industry, but so tired of trying that you feel that your ambition is fading away. 

Stop 🛑 in the name of all the women who need role models like you. You can show so many co-workers, other women, girls, boys, your family, friends, the whole community that tiredness is not the end. It is the beginning for change. This is your turning point! But if you love being tired stop reading.  Let’s be honest, it’s not rocket science. We need more female leaders.But you already know this. Just like you know the reasons there aren’t more women in top management. Reasons such as:    

• Few role models for women (you can’t be what you can’t see!)
    • Women have more family responsibilities than men 
    • Lack of leadership training designed for women
    • Lots of our companies have a masculine corporate culture
    • Roles assigned by society to men and women 

And you know that we are doing a terrible job in The Netherlands right?

“The Netherlands scores the lowest in Western Europe when it comes to female representation in management positions. The share of women is 25% compared to 32% in Western Europe.” – this is from a 2018 Mckinsey report. 

Yes what we need most is more female leadership. And acting like a girl is actually good for business because:

1. Companies with strong female leadership deliver a 36% higher return on equity, the index provider MSCI.
2. Companies with more than one woman on the board have returned a compound 3.7% a year over those that have none since 2005, Credit Suisse, Research Institute
3. And this summer it was all over the news that companies that employ the most women get the best returns (Morgan Stanley report). 

Good leadership includes empathy, patience, listening and caring, which are traditionally “female characteristics”. Right now the world has too much of masculine leadership. We need to create a balance. 

That is why I am calling on you to STEP IT UP. It is on you now. 

So I shared some terrible numbers and facts with you. But what the hell does it matter if you’re not changing the facts? 

Change means starting with you. 

Your perception. 

You might not define yourself as a leader but if you don’t who the hell will?!! I know you have great ideas, are ambitious and I really know that you would simply ROCK when you reach the top. 

But… do think you have the luxury to sit and do nothing? Or do you:

– Feel the urgency to set goals and to achieve them and not just keep dreaming and brainstorming
– Want to develop in business career and want to live your life on your terms.
– Want to move forward instead of standing still and delaying things
– Want to have the guts to pursue your real wishes.
– Think that more is possible than you do now but you don’t know how to handle it in the right way and thus get out of your routine
– Want to focus on yourself so that you can decide which direction you want to go with your career. 

If so, let’s get you moving girl!  

But wait, there is one big challenge. Do you have enough bagage? Are you carrying enough awareness, confidence and believe in yourself? Every single one of them can be learned. Did you know that having confidence is a skill people develop? 

Listen girl. What I learned after many years of BrandedU, as feedback from women (who have followed my training and make real steps in their career), is that the power is in the repetition. By this they mean that they have received a lot of “luggage” due to the multiple contact moments with BrandedU. And that despite the fact that they were once again drawn into the issues of the day at work, they kept on track with their goals because of their luggage and that this empowered them enormously. Nothing imposter syndrome, they find out they can do much more than they think! 

Why would anyone hire you if you don’t believe you can do it? Would you go to a hair dresser that doesn’t say with confidence that she can style your hair? I think not! 

So let’s keep it real. You gotta put in the work and like they say, Rome wasn’t built in a day. But you don’t have to do it by yourself. I am the most impatient woman in the world, those who know me well can testify on this, so I like to do this with focus and the right energy. This is why I launched 2 new programs this year, both will take place in an inspiring location in Spain in autumn. Because if I don’t who will, WHY WAIT? And most leadership programs only focus on masculine skills and there is enough of that already in the world, we don’t need more of that kind of energy out there.  

So let’s ROCK it our way with:

This program is a concrete path for established female leaders to become inspiring role models in business. You can be a successful leader and pay it forward to the next generation. So I already have women from companies such as Rituals and De Persgroep on this program (from 29th september – 2nd of October). It is an individual coaching program so no group sessions. More info can be found here.
They will also become mentors to women following Women’s Leadership Path. 

2. WOMEN’S LEADERSHIP PATHHere we bring like-minded career women together to prepare themselves for their next career move. During the week (2-8 October 2019) women follow group sessions to gain new insights and inspiration and make new valuable connections. Every day there are inspiring speakers, workshops and mindfulness sessions. If you follow this program here you get a mentor from the Lead to Empower program. 

Both programs are uniquely designed with one goal: building the confidence in women to make themselves more visible. Because in the end you need to inspire more women to follow in your footsteps and do what you do. Because when they see you doing it, you increase not only their ambitions but also their beliefs that they can do it. So you have to be more visible, also if you aren’t visible who will give you your dream role? 

Listen girl, if you are ready and don’t have time to waste, email me before the 1st of September because then I can still give you my special surprise (you know how I love giving these away). That is a special invitation to one of my inspirational events that I organize with Harper’s Bazaar for our Network Academy. To end things in the words of that famous shoe brand : Just friggin’ do it already!…... *well they should really say it in this way  

See you in Spain! 


Let’s talk about sex

Salt N Pepa once sang:

 “Yo, I don’t think we should talk about this (Come on, why not?)
People might misunderstand what we’re tryin’ to say, you know?
(No, but that’s a part of life)
Come on

Let’s talk about sex, baby
Let’s talk about you and me
Let’s talk about all the good things
And the bad things that may be
Let’s talk about sex”

Back then 1990 when this song was released I was 17 and thought it was the best! Women owning their sexuality and even talking about it, that was still unheard of. Women were supposed to behave and not talk about these kinds of things.

Well the subject matter is still on the table. But in a different way. There is still gender inequality and women are often times overlooked when it comes to top jobs and leadership roles. So we still need to talk about sex!

Now, I am a big fan of more female leaders. Why? Because we are at a stage now that we need to redefine what leadership means or what we want it to mean. Today’s workforce (with people from all kinds of backgrounds and cultures) is calling for new leadership. Not just more diversity but also more inclusion. And this is a behavioral matter. Women tend to behave more in this way than men do. 




For this all to work we need more human leadership skills which women possess and show more of. Women possess strong people skills and this enables them to read situations accurately and take in information from all sides.

It is time to shift our paradigms. 

I recently had a woman who asked that question most women ask : How do I balance it all? And I told her she already was. It was just that her mind was looking for perfection. But perhaps a better answer would have been that it is not about balancing it all, but about determining what gives you energy and what drains your energy. I read an article about this on the Mckinsey website and found it was an interesting take on how we could look at this subject differently. It’s all about our mindsets.

Mindset plays a huge role in personal branding. Because becoming aware of your own mind and how you can use this gives you more self confidence.

And women need more self confidence. We often don’t think we have leadership skills but when I look at how many women manage work, family life and often help others I believe we have the best skills needed to be the new kind of leaders.

So we need to keep talking about sex otherwise nothing will ever change. And do we really want to tell our daughters and nieces going to school that the chances of them becoming leaders are limited?

Let me know if you agree,

I learned from the best

Whitney Houston once sang :

Whitney Houston once sang : “I learned from the best I learned from you”, It was a love song but hey today I am using it as a message to all the fabulous role models out there. 

We had a really fantastic International Women’s Day summit yesterday, you missed a great event. But hey I got you, below you will find 15 lessons learned from the 15 speakers we had!

So this has been a crazy week but I am super grateful because hey, how many people can truly follow their passion?!