Leading Women at Holmes Place | Ellie Flenga
Ellie Flenga, CEO of Holmes Place Greece, talks about her journey at Holmes Place and women’s role in business today.
How and how long ago did you begin your journey with Holmes Place?
My journey at Holmes Place started in 1992 as a Holmes Place member in London and later on, in 2001, as the CEO of Holmes Place in Athens, Greece.
What do you feel about what you’ve accomplished so far in your career?
I remember reading in Steve Jobs’ autobiography that one of his main goals was to make sure he lives his life to the fullest and that he wanted ‘to leave a ding in the universe’. Not that I can compare myself to Steve Jobs of course (!), but I do feel that over the last 14 years I was given the opportunity to live a life full of experiences, accomplishments and impactful moments and also to change the lives of many people for the better.
Is there anything you’d change?
It is difficult to answer this question. There have been times when I wondered whether I was doing the right thing. Whether the sacrifices I made with my kids, personal life, etc. were really worth it. And each time the answer was: yes! Simply because being at Holmes Place as an executive and as a member made me a better wife, a better mother and a better person!
What are your considerations regarding the role of women in business today?
Prior to Holmes Place, I was working for a Japanese Bank in the City of London with very few women in management positions. I always had to work with male colleagues, clients, managers etc. I may have been lucky, but I never felt that being a woman was an obstacle to my career, even in a very male dominant environment. At Holmes Place, the role of women is very different. More females are holding management positions and women are very much respected and valued as professionals. This is of course a company culture that is strongly related to the values of the company’s founder and CEO.
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