Another pair of eyes
Since the start in 1995, The House of HR expanded and became a success story. However, as a woman at the head of an international company, I was the odd-one-out. Excellence didn’t automatically grant me a seat at the table. I had to fight to be taken seriously as a businesswoman: in the boardroom, among competitors and towards investors.
That’s shameful, unjust and short-sighted.
Having another pair of eyes take a fresh look at your business is a blessing. The eyes can belong to different people and it’s useful at any stage of your business. It could be a personal mentor when you start up or when you need to take a step back. Or an external board member who gives you a reality check when you’ve been in business for some time. Or a private equity player that takes your company to a whole new level.
Excellence didn’t automatically grant me a seat at the table.
Female leadership ventures
That’s why, in 2014, I founded Stella P., a company that sources potential new board members for companies in order to add value to their board. With boards traditionally having a low number of women, we focus on head-hunting female executives for these companies. In 2023 I handed the company over to Tessa Dugardin and Julie Desmet. I am still a mentor for the team.
In 2016 I also set up We Are Jane, an investor fund – 100% fuelled by women – that finances businesses run by women.
Female role model
In addition to that, I “leaned in” and became the female role model that I missed out on when I was younger and in desperate need of examples. To inspire women to follow their dreams and to dream big – on their own terms.
“The world needs female role models. You can’t be what you can’t see.”
The female role model post-pandemic
Who’s with me in leaving comfort zones and taking down silos? ...
Conny Vandendriessche is the founder and owner of Stella P., a firm specialising in selecting external directors for company boards, and House of HR, a firm specialising in everything about people &am...