Bold and resilient

20 September 2019 | Business

De Greeff is the architect of her own life

Izelle de Greeff believes that women raise more than just children, they raise leaders.

Elizabeth Joseph

In Izelle de Greeff’s line of work, one has to be resilient.

You have to have the ability to withstand, recover and bounce back, amid ever-changing and stressful conditions.

De Greeff is the head of Alexander Forbes’ financial services administration.

She believes that knowledge cannot be stolen.

She, therefore, did all she could to build herself up mentally.

“I believe that knowledge is the one thing that no one can steal from you. Therefore, throughout the years, I worked hard to add to my practical experience, and I have done quite a lot of skills’ development training,” De Greeff said.

She attained her a national diploma in marketing and business management at the Namibia Business Institute (NBI) in 2010 and recently obtained a Bachelor of Business Administration (honours) from the University of Namibia (Unam).

De Greeff is the epitome of ‘the future is female’. She makes sure she keeps learning and growing.

“I come from a background where it was a woman’s place to just be pretty and let men take centre stage. Today, we are leading, along with men, and we continue to soar to greater heights.

“I want to challenge my fellow women to believe they are worthy and capable of leading in this male-dominated jungle - if I can put it that way. Women raise more than just children, they raise leaders,” she said.

Life lessons

De Greeff said her mother taught her the greatest life lessons.

“She taught me to be truthful and humble, irrespective of the challenges we face in life.

“Mistakes are lessons learned. She has a saying that ‘the reason we have two ears and one mouth is that you need to listen to both sides of a story and think twice before you speak once’,” De Greeff said.

“You are the architect of your own life; we cannot change the past, but we can change the future by the decisions we take in life. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction.”

Her advice to others is: “Do not discount the little things in life, as they all add up to something great. It can be something greatly terrible or something greatly amazing. Regardless of what it is, it all starts with the little things.”

Five Izelle facts

· She is adaptable, caring, amicable, altruistic and unflappable.

· She married her high school sweetheart and planned her wedding in three weeks.

· She owns a Boerboel named Tinkerbell.

· She initially wanted to study forensic science and also considered interior designing.

· She did modelling from the age of six until she was 24 and absolutely loved it.

· She can be quite creative when planning events.

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