When Women Win

By Rana Nawas

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Description

"When Women Win" is a new podcast series where I interview boss ladies from all walks of life to discover their journey, the challenges they faced and how they overcame them... We will deconstruct the tools and strategies they used in a clear and simple way so that women all over the world can benefit from them - both personally and professionally. As I thrive on diversity, you will find that the guests vary widely - that's intentional! From Arts to Humanitarian, to Corporates, to Entrepreneurs, to Academics, to Sports to Politics - we stand to learn from women across geographies, industries, functions and skill-sets. For those of you who don’t know me, my name is Rana Nawas. I’m a corporate warrior, published writer, speaker, problem solver, growth junkie, and mom of two. I’m on a mission to inspire women of all backgrounds to shine… I hope this podcast gets us a bit closer to that goal.

Episode Date
Season Finale with CNN Anchor Hala Gorani – Her Story, Parity In Media, and Patterns In Politics
56:01

Today’s special guest is one of CNN’s most experienced journalists. She anchors HALA GORANI TONIGHT, a show that brings viewers into the heart of CNN's International operation and immerses them in the latest stories of the day. In addition to her anchoring duties, Hala often goes into the field to report on major breaking news stories like the Syrian refugee crisis in Lebanon in 2014 and the 2012 Egyptian Elections.

We had a wide ranging discussion about careers, politics, and social norms. We talked about how CNN has managed to keep Hala for 20 years... We discussed unconscious bias in women, where it comes from and how to overcome it. We compared Europe’s bloody path to peace to the Middle East’s current conflicts. We touched on the (non) impact of the Arab Spring. We even made time for tips on interviewing.

I loved every second of our high-energy conversation, but if I had to choose my favorite part, it would be something Hala mentioned closer to the end, when I asked Hala what advice she would give her 18-year old self. It amazes me how many women would say the exact same thing.

If you would like to follow Hala you can find her on Twitter @HalaGorani, or Instagram @hgorani. and of course also on CNN. She also serves as her dog’s PR agent and you can follow Louis on Instagram @louis_lately.

Jun 25, 2018
Episode 29 - The Power of Networking and Owning Your Personal Brand -- Kristy Wallace
33:56

Kristy is responsible for executing Ellevate Network’s mission to close the gender achievement gap in business by providing professional women with a global community to lean on and learn from. Kristy is also host of the Ellevate Podcast.

We dived deep into the power of networking – and how to network effectively. Your tribe, your squad! We discussed the concept of a personal brand and how important it is to cultivate one intentionally, noting that one’s brand must change over time. I asked Kristy about recent guests on the very popular Ellevate Podcast and what we can expect to learn at Mobilize Women, the 2018 Ellevate Summit which will be held on June 21st. Finally we closed with some personal questions and I was surprised to find a fellow Nancy Drew fan!

One of the many insights Kristy shared was that "all leaders have different traits – different narratives, different identities. So how do you start to cultivate what your identity is?"

Please forgive the sirens – the podcast was recorded in New York City!

To find out more about Kristy, follow her on LinkedIn, Instagram @kristyawallace and Twitter @kristysisko

The Mobilizing the Power of Women takes place on June 21. While the event is sold out, you can follow it and watch for FREE on ellevatenetwork.com.

Jun 12, 2018
Episode 28 – Marshall Goldsmith on Breaking the 12 Habits Holding Women Back
42:39

This episode is packed full of actionable tips and truth bombs. Dr. Marshall Goldsmith has been named the World's #1 Executive Coach and the World's #1 Leadership Thinker. Marshall has coached over 150 major CEOs, is the author of multiple New York Times bestsellers and has decades of experience helping men and women win.

Marshall is the first male guest on When Women Win! He has recently co-written with Sally Helgesen an incredibly powerful book called "How Women Rise", which breaks down the 12 habits holding professional women back in the workplace.

While structural and systemic changes must be made to the workplace to give women equal opportunity to rise, this book rather focuses on things that a woman herself can control to make herself more effective. I was blown away by the insights and I recommend the book highly to all women, dads of daughters, HR managers, and CEOs out there.

It was also a humbling experience to be coached on air, during my own interview. In the end I was hit with a well-deserved fine (charitable contribution) for starting too many sentences with "but" and "no". I really want to thank Marshall for this eye-opening experience.

Here's a few of the insights and quotes from our chat:

"When men and women get an offer, men negotiate - women say thank you."

"Don't fall into the trap of being indispensable."

"The average woman leader gets better 360 feedback than the average male leader."

"Don't worship the corporate God."

"Don't be ashamed to need help."

To further upgrade your skills head over to www.marshallgoldsmith.com where Marshall makes all his material available for free. You can also find Marshall on LinkedIn where he has over 1 million followers.

A big thank you to Naseba, Moustafa Hamwi and Right Selection for making this episode possible.

Jun 05, 2018
Episode 27 – Making Work More Accessible For Women -- Helen McGuire
41:35

Helen McGuire launched Hopscotch in March 2016 whilst seven months pregnant with a mission to enable professional women to play a part in the workplace in the Middle East, no matter what their personal commitments. The company now employs a strong team across its three tenets of Work, Learn and Connect; has grown a community of over 50k women in the region and works with multinationals to SMEs in order to spearhead initiatives, skills sessions, events and training for women and companies. Helen is also a lead member of the UN Women’s Empowerment Taskforce in the UAE, speaks regularly at Forums regionally and internationally, and is a mum of two.

On this episode we talked about Helen's journey from the world of entertainment to media to starting her own business in the UAE. Her insights on knowing when its time to move are super interesting.

From there we transitioned into talking about Hopscotch, the first women’s empowerment platform in the MENA region to launch an offering purely for female professionals looking for careers support through work, skills and networking. We talked about what how women who have been out of the workforce can hit the ground running. From there we moved onto the support women need at all levels - at work and at home. We also discussed what companies can do to better serve their male and female employees.

You can find more about Helen and Hopscotch on Instagram @hopscotch_me and https://hopscotch.work

May 30, 2018
Episode 26 – Karen Wazen on The Life of an Influencer
44:57

We got into Karen's life story and her fascinating journey to this point. She also shared some great advice for anyone interested in growing their social media presence. As a result, this episode is a little longer than usual.

Karen is a fashion, beauty and lifestyle influencer whose followers are mostly women aged 18-34 located in the USA, UAE and KSA. She has worked with numerous, diverse brands including Dior Beauty, Louis Vuitton, Apple, Jo Malone and Cadillac. Karen is busy! She has a husband, three children under the age of four and a hectic work travel schedule. Karen is a big believer that women can “do it all” and is a passionate cheerleader of women everywhere.

We had an animated chat about all things “influencer”: I asked Karen what she does on a daily basis and how she maintains a balance between glitz and reality. We talked about the recent reveal of her skin condition and how her followers reacted to it. We discussed how Karen became one of the region’s biggest influencers and how she curates her digital content. The burden of scrutiny also came up – including the need for thick skin! Finally, Karen gave us some tips on how to take strong photographs and how to build one’s following on Instagram.

My favorite quote was: “you can grow horizontally or vertically”. I think it’s applicable in many different contexts.

You can find Karen Wazen on Instagram @karenwazenb and YouTube.

May 22, 2018
Episode 25 - How to Have Difficult Conversations in the Workplace -- Dawn Metcalfe
36:40

Since leaving her native Ireland, Dawn Metcalfe has worked in seven countries including China and Japan, and now calls Dubai her home. Known for her straight-talking truth-telling and powerful insights, Dawn has worked with leaders around the world to change their perspective, their behavior and their impact on others. Dawn’s inspiration behind the book was being hired on eight different occasions to tell an employee that they smelt bad!

 

We discussed how to approach difficult conversations in every day circumstances, such as a corporate employee wanting to give a peer feedback, or an entrepreneur disagreeing with your business partner. This episode is essential listening for CEOs who want to create a culture of “speaking up” (spoiler alert: this is linked to a culture of “being heard”).

 

Dawn draws from extensive research and neuroscience techniques to explain human communication behavior and how to combat instincts that hold us back. We talked about how to resolve conflict and affect change no matter what your culture, background or experience.

 

We also discussed Dawn’s journey and the challenges she has overcome to get to this point – from threats of physical violence by her teenage students to managing a chronic disease.

 

My favorite quote was: “Being nice is not the same as being kind”.

 

You can find @TeamHardTalk on all social media platforms, follow Dawn Metcalfe on LinkedIn or Twitter @PDSiDXB, or email Dawn at dawn@hardtalk.info. You can order the HardTalk Handbook online at noon.com and jamalon.com.

May 15, 2018
Episode 24 – The Art and Science of Public Speaking – Saana Azzam
38:00

A talented speaker herself and a trainer of public speakers, Saana’s core business is managing over 200 speakers globally and matching them to the right events. Her clients include Ericsson, Spotify, and Del Monte as well as numerous royals and dignitaries.

Trained by international journalists and media experts from CNBC and MBC amongst others, Saana has undertaken public speaking assignments in Europe on leadership and leading Generation Y. She was recognized as one of Sweden’s 101 Super talents in 2012, and a “Top 30 Under 30 influencers” in 2015. Her speaking engagements have covered audience sizes up to 1000 people, all across Europe and the Middle East.

During our chat, we discussed Saana’s entrepreneurial journey, what drove her from “Female Economist of the Year” to building a business, and what obstacles she’s faced along the way. We talked about the art and science of public speaking, and got loads of practical tips on how to get better at it, including some limits! We even discussed how CEOs use speakers strategically in their companies… in fact, this episode is another good one for CEOs looking at messaging! Finally, we talked about gender equality and how to get there, with a focus on her home country of Sweden, a leader in the world of gender parity.

If you are a CEO keen to improve messaging internally and leverage speakers to do it – this episode is for you. If you are a corporate professional keen to sharpen your speaking skills, this episode is for you. If you are an entrepreneur like Saana - or want to become an entrepreneur - this episode is for you.

You can find out more about MENA Speakers on Facebook, Instagram and LinkedIn. To get in touch with Saana, follow her on Instagram or LinkedIn.

May 08, 2018
Episode 23 – Leaving a Successful Corporate Career To Start Your Own Business? – Lily Kandalaft
39:52

Lily Kandalaft is the founder of Malaak Mama & Baby Care, the UAE’s first maternity focused childcare agency providing prenatal classes, maternity nurses, babysitters, sleep trainers, breastfeeding support as well as other pre- and postnatal services to support families in the UAE. A passionate supporter of working moms, Lily tries to be for others what she needed herself.

In our conversation Lily shared valuable lessons she learned in the corporate world that have served her well in entrepreneurship. We also talked about the challenges on her journey as an entrepreneur: the burden of constant decision-making, how she’s had to give up on the myth of perfection to be kinder to herself and how she’s learned to say no. Lily has found that managing people and various stakeholder interests becomes both more difficult and important as a small business owner.

For people who see a gap in the market and want to start their own business, Lily's advice is “just do it.” She also talks about the value of starting out as a side hustle before committing fully to your passion enterprise. She also reveals how she's managed to And she credits maintining her sanity through this journey to the support of mentors, role models and sympathetic friends.

If you would like to know more about Malaak you can visit www.malaakme.com or find them on Facebook (@malaakuae) and Instagram (@malaakbabycare)

May 01, 2018
Episode 22 – Muna Al Gurg on Leadership In A Large Family Business
41:46

Muna sits on too many boards to list here so I’ll just mention a few: Along with her two sisters, Muna sits on the board of the family business founded by their father; she is the Chair of ìYoung Arab Leaders – a non-profit organisation that promotes education, entrepreneurship and youth development; and she is a founding board member and Co-Chair of Endeavor UAE, a non-profit organisation that promotes high-impact entrepreneurship in emerging and growth markets. Her first seat on a board of directors was in the Dubai Community Theatre and Arts Centre, where she served from 2004 to 2009, helping build the cultural center.

She started her career in Dubai with Saatchi & Saatchi and in 2001 Muna joined Easa Saleh Al Gurg Group, as director of marketing and communications. Since 2009, she has been director of retail, responsible for strategy and operational development for the group’s international and local retail brands.

Muna is an advocate for women in business. Within the family business she started the Al Gurg Women’s Empowerment Forum, a program providing a platform for women to voice their opinions to company board members. In 2015 she launched the Muna Al Gurg Scholarship at London Business School, supporting female students studying on the school’s MBA and Executive MBA program.

In June 2010, Muna received the prestigious Emirates Women’s Award for outstanding achievers.

We discussed Muna’s career path from Saatchi & Saatchi to the family business; the enormous risks associated with the third generation of leadership and how to mitigate them, the pluses and minuses of working with family, and tips on conflict avoidance and resolution. We also talked about how her drive for self-improvement has shaped her path in both business and philanthropy, and how she manages the overwhelm. Muna is an advocate for women in business, and we discussed her MBA scholarship fund and how to get more women into leadership positions.

My favorite quote was “Never over-promise and underdeliver.”

You can find Muna on Twitter @MunaAlGurg and LinkedIn.

Please forgive the banging you’ll hear towards the end of the show – there was some construction work next to the studio!

Apr 26, 2018
Episode 21 - Manika Kaur on Philanthropy and Sikhism
38:05

Sikhism is a Punjabi (Indian) religion that goes back some 500 years, and as a devotional singer/ songwriter Manika's goal is to modernize the context and of the old religious texts so that young Sikhs all over the world can connect to and benefit from their messages.

Manika won the 2016 Sikh Award for Sikhs in Entertainment and has amassed over 10,000,000 views on YouTube. Manika's other passion is her philanthropic work. She tirelessly campaigns for the eradication of poverty in rural Punjab via her work with the organisation Kirtan for Causes. All profits from sales of her albums and live concerts are donated directly to the charity, which supports the education of disadvantaged youth via sponsorship schemes. Manika personally sponsors and educates 200 children.

In 2015 she gave a sold-out concert at London's prestigious Union Chapel and she has been invited to sing in Gurdwaras around the world. Manika has been featured on the BBC Radio, ABC Australia and more.

We talked about the reality of life in Punjab including farmer suicide and cervical cancer; we talked about what drives her personally and professionally, her difficulty as a misfit child and how that has become a source of strength, how important it is to love and look after oneself. Arranged marriage. Her upcoming book. My favourite line of the interview was "A child gives birth to a mother – and he gave birth to a strong one."

To find out more about Manika, please visit her website www.manikamusic.com. You can find her on Instagram @manika.kaur and Twitter @manikakaur

To make a direct donation to her charity, please visit www.educatetosave.com

Apr 11, 2018
Episode 20 - Mona Ataya on Building Two Hugely Successful Businesses
40:42

Mona Ataya founded Mumzworld in 2011 to fill a void for mothers that she herself faced twice: firstly while preparing to become a mother of twins and couldn't find local resources, and then later in trying to buy her children quality, affordable toys. Prior to Mumzworld, Mona co-founded Bayt, the first online search engine for jobs in the Middle East. Mona actually started out in the corporate world and spent 10 years working for FMCG giants Procter & Gamble and Johnson & Johnson.

We discussed Mona's career drivers and how her desire for social impact shaped her path. We talked about lessons from the corporate world like resourcefulness and accountability. We addressed the challenges of e-commerce and how to overcome them, and how to build a company culture that is ìcustomer obsessedî. I asked about support and coping mechanisms - because none of this can be easy! Finally, we discussed what to look for in investors, given her experience raising 5 rounds of funding for Mumzworld. (Hint: it ain't just the money!)

This episode was extra-special as it was recorded in a Careem! For international listeners, Careem is the Middle East's leading ride-hailing app. So yes: this was my first ever WWW interview in a taxi - and we had loads of fun. A big thank you to Careem for making it happen. You can find them at www.careem.com or @CareemUAE on Twitter.

If you would like to follow Mona Ataya you can find her through Mumzworld.com or @Mumzworld on Twitter and Instagram.

Apr 04, 2018
Episode 19 - Elizabeth Macbride on Women in Business and Journalism
33:35

Elizabeth MacBride is a freelance writer, editor and media consultant. She is an entrepreneur who writes about entrepreneurs and her expertise lie in business, finance and technology. Elizabeth's clients include Abigail Disney and Stanford University Graduate School of Business.

We had a wide-ranging conversation that covered everything from entrepreneurship in Gaza's fisherwoman to actionable tips for investing your wealth. We discussed how to be a good interviewer, the power of vulnerability and how it changes with age. I asked about women in business generally, but also specifically in media - we ended up "taking breasts to work!" We briefly touched on Elizabeth's blog on Forbes.com and the business of guns in the USA. And I asked her about coping mechanisms as a single parent and breadwinner.

During our conversation we referenced...

Elizabeth's Blog on Forbes
www.forbes.com/sites/elizabethmacbride

Article on Gaza's Fisherwoman
www.forbes.com/sites/elizabethmacbride/2016/08/29/how-the-courageous-fisherwoman-of-gaza-is-building-a-business-in-the-blockaded-seaport

Gaza Technology Hub
gazaskygeeks.com

You can follow Elizabeth MacBride on Twitter @editoremacb or www.elizabethmacbride.com

Mar 26, 2018
Episode 18 - Donna Benton on Building and Scaling A Global Business
35:10

Donna Benton started the Entertainer in Dubai in 2001 after identifying a market gap in both providing consumers with dining incentives and enabling restaurants to reach new customers. Starting with just $3,000 Donna built the business alone from the ground up, from set-up legalities to eventually selling half the company to Abraaj, a private equity firm. Today, the Entertainer offers 38 products across 15 countries, and has over 10,000 merchant partners globally.

We talked about the challenges starting up - and it wasn't just the usual ones: for example, Donna had to educate consumers who thought her product was too good to be true, and there must be a catch! We discussed her international expansion, and how it started with a chance conversation. I asked Donna what traits she thought entrepreneurs must have to succeed and she listed loads of them: thick skin to accept rejection; passion to put in the long hours; drive to beat the loneliness; a zest for learning; and the ability to lead by example. In selling half her company, it was critical to find the right partner who shared her vision for the future, involving international growth and going digital. And finally, we talked about how important it is for women to have financial independence.

You can follow Donna Benton on Instagram, and the Entertainer app can be downloaded from app stores on Android and iOS for various countries around the world.

Mar 19, 2018
Episode 17 - Maysoun Ramadan on How to Keep a Corporate Career Fulfilling
41:38

During our conversation, we discussed Maysoun's attitude towards diversity, which includes looking well beyond gender, to age, expertise, ethnicity and also ability. I was keen to learn how she went about hiring a lady with a disability onto her team and what the impact on the organization was. We talked about the biggest challenge she faced in life, and how she overcame it. And we also discussed the many exciting people-facing jobs that exist for women who study science subjects.

I enjoyed listening to hearing Maysoun's tips for women in the corporate world... Know your strengths and weaknesses; be courageous; accept or even seek change; network; self-promote; ask for what you want; own your trajectory; build a strong support system - among others. But my two favourites were these: when she gets manterrupted, she interrupts right back (politely)! And the ultimate life hack that I have found useful in my own career/ life: it is OK to not be OK... It is OK to not be perfect.

If you would like to follow up with Maysoun, you can find her on LinkedIn or check out Roche Diagnostics.

Mar 12, 2018
Episode 16 - Myrna Ayad on Dubai's Art Scene & Art Dubai 2018
37:46

We talked about Myrna's interest in art, how it was born and what it has taught her about history. We discussed Dubai's young art scene, how it came about and why it's grown so fast. She also gave an interesting perspective on the word pairs: writer vs journalist, collector vs patron. I asked Myrna how to buy art , which for many people is a really intimidating process.

Finally, Myrna gave us the scoop on Art Dubai 2018, which is happening March 21-24. Lots of exciting new things are planned this year so be sure to get your tickets online at www.artdubai.ae.

You can find Myrna on Instagram as @myrnaayad or reach her through Art Dubai. And please do feel free to tap the Art Dubai team and website to get smarter on art all throughout the year - they are highly approachable people!

Mar 05, 2018
Episode 15 - Afra Atiq on Finding Your Voice
40:22

Afra Atiq was named Best Performer for 2015-16 by Rooftop Rhythms, and won the 2017 ADMAF Creativity Awards. She proudly gives back to her community through mentorships and workshops with Untitled Chapters (a thriving hub for Emirati women writers). As a scholar, Afra has recently been published in the International Journal of Research in Humanities and Social Sciences and conducted social research pertaining to literature and education.

During our conversation we discussed the challenges of public speaking and practical tips to overcome them (spoiler alert: "winging it" doesn't work). We looked at the creative process and how living in a cultural melting pot like Dubai can feed it. Afra shared why everyone's unique story counts, and must be told in your authentic voice.

We finish this episode with a live studio performance of one of Afra's favourite poems.

If you would like to follow Afra Atiq on social media, you can do so on Twitter @a_afra and Instagram @afraatiq.

Feb 26, 2018
Episode 14 - Isobel Abuhoul on Literacy Activism and Being A Serial Entrepreneur
40:03

Isobel Abuhoul left Cambridge for Dubai in 1968 and has been here ever since. In 1975, Isobel set up Al Ittehad Private School and Magrudy's bookshop - both of which are still thriving today. In 2008 Isobel founded the Emirates Airline Festival of Literature, the Arab Worldís largest celebration of the written and spoken word, bringing people of all ages together with authors from across the world to promote education, debate and reading. The festival won the Best Festival title at the Middle East Event Awards in 2013, 2014 and 2015.

In this episode we explored Isobel's "why?", what drove her to establish one enterprise after another. Isobel walked me through some of the challenges she faced and what tools she used to overcome them - the value of her network came up a couple of times. We also discussed how she has managed to keep her enterprises alive 40 years on, in the face of fierce competition - by putting herself in the shoes of a demanding and impatient customer! Finally, Isobel gave us a sneak preview of the upcoming Emirates Lit Fest - I've bought tickets to 6 sessions and I cannot wait to attend!

The 2018 Emirates Literature Festival is running March 1-10. Tickets are available online at emirateslitfest.com, but do hurry up as the sessions are selling out fast. You can also get in touch with and follow Isobel on Twitter @UmmMansour

Feb 19, 2018
Episode 13 - Maysa Jalbout on The Future of Education and Transforming It Through Philanthropy
48:44

Maysa Jalbout is the founding CEO of the Abdulla Al Ghurair Foundation for Education - a landmark philanthropic initiative with a budget of $1 billion and an ambitious goal of educating 15,000 youth within 10 years. Forbes recognized her as one of the 100 most powerful businesswomen in the Arab world in 2016 and 2017. In her capacity as Non-resident Fellow at the Brookings Institution in Washington DC, Jalbout's extensive regional and international experience has also allowed her to produce highly visible research and thought leadership strategies in several fields of education.

In this episode we tackled several big questions around education. Everything from whether higher education is necessary, how education is out of step with employment needs, refugee access to education, and the gender gap in science subjects.

Maysa also shared how as CEO of one of the largest education foundations in the world she is transforming education in the region.

If you would like to get in touch with Maysa or learn more about her work, please visit http://www.alghurairfoundation.org/en

Feb 05, 2018
Episode 12 - Lina Khalifeh on Building Confidence Through Martial Arts Training
36:10

Lina Khalifeh has more than 17 years experience practicing martial arts like Taekwondo, Kick-boxing, Kung Fu & Boxing. She is a 3Dan black belt in Taekwondo and has represented Jordan in many international tournaments. Appalled by violence against women, especially domestic violence, Lina decided to train women in self-defense. She started in her parents' basement, and in 2012 set up her first SheFighter training studio, the Middle East's first self-defense studio to empower women both mentally and physically. Lina is also an international businesswoman and is growing the SheFighter brand globally.

In this episode we discussed how training can make women more confident and better able to defend themselves against violence. Reaction time is critical! Lina also mentioned a couple of specific things to do when faced with an attacker: target the throat or groin. If you want people to help you catch a fleeing culprit, shout "He's a thief!” It was interesting but not surprising to learn that gender discrimination and sexual harassment exist in the word of martial arts - we talked about speaking up "even if your voice is shaking".

We covered the online abuse that Lina and SheFighter are receiving from the patriarchy due to the powerful social impact of her work, and how to react to that bullying. We also talked about her personal ability to switch off from the daily intensity - as an introvert, she prefers to recharge alone through individual sports like swimming or running.

One must point out that self-defense training is relevant to men as well as women, boys as well as girls.

If you would like to get in touch with Lina or learn more about her work, please visit www.shefighter.com or find her on Instagram @shefighter.

A huge thank you to Naseba and the WIL Economic Forum for making this interview possible.

Jan 22, 2018
Episode 11 - Haben Girma on Choosing Her Own Story As A Deaf-Blind Advocate
25:05

Haben Girma is the first deaf-blind graduate of Harvard Law School. She advocates for equal access to information for people with disabilities, and because of this work she has been honored by President Obama, President Clinton and many others.

In this short episode we talked about her own journey with disability and the support network that has helped her grow and excel in various aspects of life, from advocacy to salsa to surfing. We also discussed the enormous market opportunity that people with disabilities presents: at 1.3B, people with disabilities are the world’s largest minority. Imagine the impact if we could include and harness diversity that created solutions for such a vast market. Haben educated me on “situational disability”: eg when a mother carrying a child has only one arm available, in that moment she is disabled - so solutions for disabilities can apply far and wide.

We talked about the great technological things happening around communicating with people who are blind and / or deaf, and also got Haben’s wish list to improve the experience!

If you would like to get in touch with Haben or learn more about her work, please visit www.habengirma.com or find her on Instagram @habengirma

A huge thanks to Naseba and the Global WIL Economic Forum for making this interview possible.

Jan 15, 2018
Episode 10 - Ozge Akbulut on How to Use Science and Business as a Force for Good
36:37

Ozge Akbulut is a real life Dr. Who – scientist, academic and entrepreneur. A Harvard and MIT engineering graduate, Ozge uses her research and experience to build businesses that solve global problems. For example, as 1 in 8 women globally will get breast cancer - Ozge has built a company called Surgitate that makes breast models to train surgeons in mastectomy. When she realised how much manufacturing cement pollutes the environment, she sought out ways to improve that and create sustainable solutions.

In this episode we talked about being super-nerds, doing scientific research that improves lives and starting a business with the right partners and backers. So if you have a background in science, academia or entrepreneurship - or an interest in solving big global problems and instilling that curiosity in others - this episode is for you!

We also touched on gender parity at Turkey’s Sabanci University... About 50% of the material science students are women; and even more impressive is the gender split of the university teaching faculty: 50% female! One of the highest in Europe.

If you would like to get in touch with Ozge or learn more about her work, please visit www.ozgeakbulut.com or find her on Twitter @matist_ozge.

A huge thank you to Naseba for making this interview possible.

Dec 20, 2017
Episode 9 - Dr. Auma Obama on Dispelling Victim Mentality and Redefining Poverty
47:54

Dr. Obama is ​also ​a published author, having released her memoir “And Then Life Happens” in both German and English.

We talked about sustainable economic growth, supporting children holistically from the age of 4 to 25, dispelling the victim mentality and redefining the notion of poverty. We also discussed a strategy for everyday people who want to engage in philanthropy, and touched on Auma’s famous brother only a tiny bit.​

​If you would like to learn more about the Sauti Kuu Foundation or make a donation, please go to www.sautikuufoundation.org 

A huge thanks to Naseba and the Global WIL Economic Forum for making this interview possible.

Dec 11, 2017
Episode 8 - Ida Beerhalter on Supporting Women Owned Business Through Angel Investing
37:01

If you've ever wondered how billionaires manage their wealth or how a family office operates, this is the show for you!

Ida Beerhalter leads IOME, a Riyadh-based private investment partnership of women principals from the Gulf region. She also serves as member of the Board of Trustees, advisor, and expert with various for-profit and not-for-profit organizations around the globe, including Astia USA, Omnia Strategy UK, Sauti Kuu Foundation Germany & Kenia, and First Light Trust UK. She also manages her own investment portfolio and is a member of Astia Angels. Beerhalter was awarded the TIAW World of Difference Award in 2015.

In this episode we talked about boards and steps you can take to joining one. We also discussed impact investing and supporting women-owned businesses through angel investing.

We also talked about how billionaires manage their wealth or how a family office operates.

A huge thank you to Naseba and the Global WIL Economic Forum 2017 for making this interview possible.

Dec 04, 2017
Episode 7 - Assia Grazioli-Venier on Female Board Members, Angel Investing, and Being A Media Executive
41:59
Assia deserves an award for the diversity of her life experiences! This show jumps around her life as we extract lessons from her wide array of experiences. We sat down together in Dubai and talked about women on boards, media strategy, growing pains of start-ups, becoming an angel investor and dyslexia. 
 

Assia Grazioli-Venier is a media executive, angel investor and advisor to high-growth tech startups and entertainment companies. In 2016, Assia co-founded Muse Capital, an angel investment fund that invests in a wide range of next-generation products from fin-tech to healthcare to entertainment. Assia is also on the board of directors of Italy's legendary Juventus Football Club; she is the first female and youngest board member in the 120-year history of the club.

Nov 21, 2017
Episode 6 - Kristina Kuzmic on Overcoming Depression, Finding Your Feet Again, and Building A Brand
37:28

Today's guest is globally renowned for her parenting humour… The Huffington Post calls it, “Parenting comedy at its finest”!

Kristina Kuzmic is energetic and funny, and has an in-your-face perspective on parenting and on life in general. You may have seen Kristina on your Facebook feed, or on some internet, radio or TV outlet. She has become a YouTube sensation with her “mom-centric” videos about raising children and juggling all of life’s challenges. With over 300 million views across media outlets and websites worldwide, Kristina has a voice and personality that has proven to be a hit with audiences everywhere.

We talked about parenting, depression, finding your feet, building a brand and remarrying…

A huge thank you to Naseba and the Global WIL Economic Forum 2017 for making this interview possible.
Nov 14, 2017
Episode 5 - Princess Tessy Antony on Formal and Informal Education, Parenting and Diversity, and Ways For Busy People To Give Back to Society
43:09

No personality has just one dimension - or even two. People are fascinating concoctions of multiple experiences... And such is today's guest.
 
Her Royal Highness Princess Tessy of Luxembourg has extensive experience in formal and informal diplomacy. She spent five years in the military, a portion of which was as a peace-keeper in Kosovo. Tessy passionately promotes a number of causes including human rights, women’s rights and global health. In January 2017, she received the 'Woman of the Decade Award' from the Women Economic Forum for her work in women empowerment, security and peace.

We discussed the role of the military and that of the United Nations. We explored formal and informal education. We talked about parenting and the value of exposing one's children to diversity at a young age. Finally, HRH Tessy provided some actionable tools for busy people in the world who want to find different ways to give back to society.

​A huge thank you to Naseba and the Global WIL ​Economic Forum 2017 for making this interview possible.

Nov 06, 2017
Episode 4 - Vibha Bakshi on Breaking The Silence and How "Daughters of Mother India" Turned Into A National Movement
41:56

A small, personal decision can sometimes change the world. When 23-year old Nibhaya was gang-raped on a moving bus in Delhi, film-maker Vibha decided to make a documentary about rape in India. Nothing had prepared her for the heart-wrenching stories she was about to hear or the everyday heroes she was about to meet. And then the film took on a life of its own, growing into a national movement and cultural beacon that has united millions of people from all corners of India. The people's message was clear: it is time to break the silence and shift the shame from the victim to the perpetrator.

Bosslady Vibha is an award-winning film director & producer. A former business reporter for CNBC, Vibha studied Journalism and Broadcasting at Boston University and New York University. Vibha’s films have been aired on HBO and Lifetime TV in the United States. Her latest film "Daughters of Mother India" is the winner of the National Film Award for Best Film on Social Issues, awarded by President of India. This is the highest honour in Indian Films. The film has also been named the Most Awarded Social Campaign in the World.

This episode is about one woman who acted on her passion and used her platform to combat a rampant social problem. We discussed the value of changing just one person at a time and its multiplier effect. We talked about society's view on rape and how it is evolving. We discussed the hugely important role that the Delhi police force played in the making of the film - and its dissemination afterwards. We discussed how "Daughters of Mother India" turned into a national movement... and what happens next.

Oct 29, 2017
Episode 3 - Tatiana Buree on How To Go From No Business Experience To Running A Booming Online Business on Amazon
24:24

23 years old and running a booming online business... How do you go from zero business knowledge to manufacturing a garment to marketing with zero $s to converting into sales on Amazon.com?

Bosslady Tatiana Buree started her business, Luxx Health, at the age of 20. She iterated her product offering as she learned from the market and finally settled on waist trainers, a very niche product.

During our conversation, Tatiana talked about her motivation behind setting up the business, the challenges she faces as a seller on Amazon.com, and how to market in a crowded place - using no money. We discussed the power of social media like Instagram and YouTube, and also talked about practical business issues like the beauty of outsourcing. I loved Tatiana’s biggest learning: focus on adding value to the marketplace.

Oct 18, 2017
Episode 2 - Sophie Le Ray on How To Mix Business and Marriage, Founding Naseba, and Promoting Female Leadership In The Arab World
23:03

Have you ever thought about setting up a business with your husband? Seeing them all day at work, and every evening at home… What about doing that for 15 years?

Bosslady Sophie Le Ray has done just that. Sophie is an entrepreneur and an experienced business facilitator. In 2002 she co-founded Naseba, a business facilitation company specializing in emerging markets. Sophie is the founder of the Global WIL Economic Forum a platform that promotes women's economic empowerment. She also co-authored a book called "Game Changers: How Women in The Arab World are Changing the Rules and Shaping the Future".

During our chat, we explored her path as an entrepreneur and discussed how to mix business with marriage. I learned more about the Women In Leadership Forum, its background and intention - and why she is taking it to Saudi Arabia in December. Sophie also shared her plans for the future - once your business is a success and is running itself, what do you do?!

Oct 18, 2017
Episode 1 - Iris Bohnet on Why Diversity Training Doesn't Work, Process Improvements, and Overcoming Unconcious Biases
34:43

Diversity training does not work. So what do we do to overcome unconscious biases that keep women out of leadership roles across society? We have to change everyday processes in order to circumvent bias. Simple steps - big impact.

Bosslady Iris Bohnet is Professor of Public Policy at the Harvard Kennedy School and is the Director of the Women & Public Policy Program at Harvard University. A behavioral economist, she has literally written the book on de-biasing how we live, learn and work. What Works: Gender Equality By Design, a 2016 Financial Times Best Business Book of the Year and 800-CEO Business Book of the Year, provides decision-makers with scientific insights on how to redesign organizations, school and society.

During our conversation, Professor Bohnet deconstructed the unique challenges that women face in the corporate world and talked about process improvements that have been proven to yield positive results. She also gave tactical advice on how to communicate in a way that acknowledges and overcomes unconcious biases.

Whether you are a female employee trying to understand the world around you or a CEO serious about gender equality, this episode has some gems for you.

Oct 18, 2017