On the 25 January 2019, 240+ women (and some men) turned up at the first LEAN IN Switzerland conference held in the heart of Zürich


With hearts pounding (literally….thanks to the amazing Saf Sap New Generation Africandrummer) we were challenged to #DreamDareDo.

It all happened when a team of spirited and talented people got together… and dared to transform their dream into reality. Four months later, a conference was born.

And what a conference it was. What I loved was how each speaker….wholeheartedly…totally unfiltered…soulfully…powerfully… spoke about their stories of becoming who they are today

They shared intimate, messy, joyful, heartbreaking, vulnerable, candid, touching moments… that had the audience cringing, nodding and cheering along.

Of all the inspiring stories and moments, I want to highlight three themes.

A story about connection: from the Slopes to the Screen


Anne-Flore Marxer is approachable, fun and full of life.

She’s also a force to be reckoned with.

Described as ‘the most complete radical snowboarder who has ever existed’, her achievements include a list of world titles.

How does a snowboarder land-up directing an multi-award winning film?

It turns out, it’s the story of connection.

By connecting her passions… for the great outdoors … and for gender equality advocacy, Anne-Flore’s energy transmitted onto screen…and the film “A land shaped by women” was born.

What happens when you connect to your passions? 


A story about creation: from regular to SUPER


Alexandra Mandoki had a surprise. She wanted us to play…with LEGO.

“Each of you have six LEGO pieces. In 30-seconds, build a….Duck.”

So we did. She then encouraged us on.

“Now rebuild…. a Dream Duck.”

Perplexed, I adjusted my pieces to add some feet. My duck was now Standing-Up.

But she had one more surprise up her sleeve. She dared us to go further.

“Pair-up up with someone. Together, you now have 12 pieces. Build ….a Super Duck!”

So here’s what Christine and I created together.

Our Super Duck – was Speaking-Out and Stepping-Up.

What happens when we co-create?

Synergy. (….and a lot of fun!)


A story about contribution – from Circle to Community




Standing-Up… Speaking-Out… Stepping-Up?

That’s just what Ana Stando and Wies Bratby did.

From a small LEAN In Circle of “wingwomen“… their dream of this conference… is sparking a community movement.

They are the first to admit that only through the collective contribution …. from the volunteers, sponsors and engaged participants… could this manifest.

What happens when we contribute to Dreamers, Darers and Doers?



In conclusion


The story of the Dreamers, Darers and Doers…. is the story about becoming.

And when we connect, create and contribute ….wholeheartedly in life… joy, synergy and inspiration… is an inevitable result. The world becomes all the better for it.

And it starts with Dreaming, Daring and Doing.

One of MY #DreamDareDo contributions in 2019?

Is to write… and POST what I write…. (hence this article).

What about you? What’s your #DreamDareDo contribution?


About the author


Selena is a leadership advisor and a coach for people in transition who want to reach their potential – and a LEAN IN Circle Leader in Switzerland.