Female Founded Webinar

Marian Spier
Iryna Pakhomova
Melanie Rieback

At Librae’s first event of the year, we hosted three inspiring entrepreneurs who had many tips to share from their experience. With the right mindset, collaborators and mentors  you are that much closer to realizing what you’ve been dreaming about.

Marian Spier presented a structured framework to reflect on your mindset:


  • Assess whether you are ready to face the risks and time investments associated with being an entrepreneur. Are you self-motivated enough to see it through?
  • Anticipate the consequences of becoming an entrepreneur on your personal life, so that you can find the right balance and set realistic expectations for yourself and others.
  • Affect your livelihood from the start. Can you handle spending more time and energy while having a less secure income at the beginning?
  • Absorb your experiences and see it as a journey, put your ego aside and be willing to improve on your shortcomings and mistakes, rather than condemn yourself for them.
  • Accept yourself and celebrate your abilities. Work on your personal brand and capitalize on your strengths. Acknowledge your limitations, but also learn the difference between positive and mean-spirited input when you receive feedback. 

Evidently, your mindset will keep you going on a path guaranteed to be filled with challenges. As a woman who has (co-)founded three companies and has advised young entrepreneurs all over the world, Marian has plenty of experience with overcoming obstacles, so we trust she is onto something when it comes to building a proactive, reflective mindset!

Iryna Pakhomova also stressed the importance of resilience. Becoming an entrepreneur is not the hard part: Staying an entrepreneur is the true challenge. You have to be able to handle crises with a level head and keep your business’ purpose in mind. Iryna certainly had her taste of challenges when she left her company in Ukraine to start something bigger in the Netherlands. Her company Nurtio Technologies develops sensors to help farmers understand and care for their plants better, so that they can operate more efficiently and successfully. Although she recognizes the desire for something large and impactful, Iryna encourages us to start now and start small. Especially during your studies,  when you don’t have to support yourself yet,  the impact of making a mistake is not as detrimental to your livelihood. And in the end, because it will be hard no matter what, finding a co-founder or team-member will make the load that much lighter to bear. 


Melanie Rieback provided a refreshing perspective on entrepreneurship: Her company Radical Open Security is the first not-for-profit business in computer security. Donations to charity are at the core of their business model, as the idea is to optimize social impact through donating all profits. Melanie argues that if your business aims for social benefit, without having significant amounts of initial capital, you are forced to have a very strong value proposition from the start. Through her entrepreneurship incubator Nonprofit Ventures Success, she hopes to change the definition of a startup’s success. The focus should be on gaining customers through significant added value, not through artificial growth by having a lot of venture capital from the start. Similar to Iryna, she encourages thinking big, but recommends starting small and focusing on your purpose. What if the business you start is the most powerful form of activism?

And with that exciting idea in mind, we hope this webinar provided you with some  inspiration to transform your own ideas into an actionable plan. We hope you’ll join us at our next event (to be announced, so stay tuned!)

Phone: +31 6 281 798 92
Email: info@librae.network
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