The AIM of PWN Amsterdam: Grow your potential – connect, share and learn. MISSION: PWN Amsterdam believes in a stronger leadership role for women in business and society. Unlocking the potential of professional women by supporting their leadership development, through connecting, sharing, learning and supporting, is core to everything we do. PWN is unique as a global [...] read more

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David Allen - Getting Things Done @PWN Amsterdam

PWN Amsterdam AGM June 2014

The Board of PWN Amsterdam enjoy celebrating the achievements of our great network and members each year at our Annual General Meeting (AGM). On June 24th this year, we hosted our AGM at The Rosarium in Amsterdam, celebrated with our members and guests, enjoyed the culinary delights of The Rosarium and were entertained by the great Boom Chicago! They consolidated the best of PWN Amsterdam in a hilarious, high energy performance. The AGM is a true example of the great connection, sharing and inspiration we aim for, and we'd like to share this clip with you...

PWN AMSTERDAM from PWN Amsterdam on Vimeo.

Report from the AGM June 30th 2015


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On Tuesday June 30th 2015, we celebrated our Annual General Meeting at the Royal Tropical Institute. In this beautiful setting, we said goodbye to two board members, Julija Luzaan and Michelle Henley and voted in two new board members, Pamela Wooley as VP Communications and Marketing and Marjola Bolhuis as Treasurer. Our translated and updated Articles of Association, prepared by Karine Hilbrandie PWN Amsterdam secretary and Alycke ??? Notary from ???? were also presented and voted in.

Dinner followed for the circa 55 members and guests attending. Caroline Zegers, Deloitte Partner, shared the vision and goals behind the Executive, Ladies Only program from Deloitte. Zabeth van Veen, from Image Maker and a facilitator for the Deloitte program, shared several tips on how to make a first and lasting impression. We will share just a few of what Zabeth shared here:

There are three ways to make an impression:
1) Online 2) Coming into the room 3) Opening your mouth

Remember that first impressions don’t have anything to do with you but the impression that is being made on the limbic system of the person you are meeting. And this happens in under 3 seconds!! It’s all about perception.

Ask yourself what you want people to see when they meet you: Friendly? Trustworthy? Arrogant? Powerful? Knowledgeable? Authoritative?

Make sure you make contact in a photo – look into the camera.

Red is noticeable – you will be noticed if you wear red. Do you want more power? Wear red.

There are four characteristics we should all strive for: authenticity, trustworthiness, talent and passion.

People want to first ‘experience’ what you are – not hear what you are. Credibility is affected by non-verbal behavior. Not being able to look someone directly in the eye, while saying you are trustworthy, will ‘speak’ much more loudly than the words you use. This reminds me of the saying by Ralph Waldo Emerson: “Your actions speak so loudly, I can’t hear what you are saying.”

Please know that these are just a few tips that Zabeth shared with us on this special evening.

We hope that you enjoyed the evening or plan to attend next year’s even grander event – celebrating 30 years as a network supporting women in their careers.

Breaking taboos about women entrepreneurship with Josette Dijkhuizen

Josette Dijkhuizen

For the third time THNK School of Creative Leadership at Westergasfabriek hosted the PWN Amsterdam event on June 2nd. With this our thanks for their wonderful hospitality.

Josette Dijkhuizen, Women’s Representative at the United Nations in 2013, came to inspire the PWN members and guests about female entrepreneurship. She is the founder of the ENPower foundation, a new initiative energizing and helping women in shelters to realize their business ideas, entrepreneurial skills and their dreams.

An idealist that puts entrepreneurship into practice, is how one could describe Josette. As a researcher, focused on the topic of success and happiness among entrepreneurs, she shared some important facts and statistics about women and business from her years of practice. Anyone of these could be discussion material for a future session:

Click here for photos and to read more about what Josette shared with us.


Anne Murphy and the Power of Language

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Do you think you speak powerfully? Is speaking powerfully about being male or female? Is there any power in politeness? How can I speak more powerfully, not only in English but in any language I speak? These and more questions about language, gender and power were asked by Anne Murphy at the PWN Learning & Development event “The Power of Language” on Thursday, March 26th.

Anne came to us from the UK Lancaster University, where she conducts academic research on the topic of linguistic and gender differences in English. She met our PWN members and guests in Aristo Amsterdam. The event on Thursday was preceded the day before by a workshop for a group of 8 members. This workshop was aimed at identifying the source of powerful language in our professional & personal lives. Thanks to Kelly Jorritsma, a designer of beautiful wedding dresses and a PWN Amsterdam member, we were hosted in her atelier Unielle Couture, Artemisstraat 180 Amsterdam.

We associate this power as strength in vocabulary or grammar, however it goes much deeper than that. Both women and men experience blockages and insecurities from speaking in public, leading discussions or business conversations. This is especially true if we use a language which isn’t native to us.

Anne shared common language misconceptions and some great practices. Powerful language comes from saying the right thing at the right time. Language is a tool that creates our social world and our actions. If we learn the power from amplifying our language skills, then leading discussions, talking assertively and building status will happen more naturally. Whoever speaks, controls who gets the next chance at speaking.

We negotiate power, always! On the surface, words don’t necessarily share the intention and position of what you are really saying. For those who attended the event, her example of “That’s the phone” “I’m in the bath” demonstrated perfectly what she meant. “That’s the phone” (shouted by one person) meaning someone else is responsible for answering the phone and I’m the one with the power to tell you to do it; to the response of the other “I’m in the bath”, meaning get it yourself and I’m not going to be dictated to.

In conversation and group exercises, we practiced: how to speak our mind; how to turn arguments to discussion; and how to bring tools of power into our language. Anne underlined voice moderation, tone changing, summarizing, as well as using silence (pauses) as great language power techniques. Complexity of language varies between cultures and genders; however language power comes primarily from confidence. Women have been trained in many cultures to be silent – this can lead to hedging more, showing more reticence in speaking. People who ask good questions have power.

Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Here’s one for you: do you know what the next PWN Amsterdam event is in calendar? Join our next event and ask Esther Mollema powerful questions about gender diversity.