Ozlem, who is an independent image consultant, a spiritual healer and a coach, originally from Istanbul (Turkey), has lived an expat life since she was very young. She spent more than ten years working in international business development in London, worked on two projects for Social Entrepreneurs in Bolivia and Argentina and her current home is Cologne.
Do you speak German?
Yes I do. I have studied German as a second foreign language followed by English as first at school and in the University. My husband is German, but we speak English at home. We met in London so the common language platform is established by then. I practice my German in the daily life, with German friends and with my in laws.
Do you think Germany is a multicultural society?
To my opinion yes, I could be an exception, though. My friends come from all parts of the world and different walks of life. By all means, I feel integrated in the German society.
What do you think is missing in Germany?
Dynamism. Germans are very cautious about new trends, which is protective on the one hand and on the other hand this attitude can slow down business and entrepreneurship.
How would you describe yourself in three words?
Strength, energy and determination. When I commit myself to a project, business or even a hobby, I devote my time and energy and conclude it. For me everything happens for a good reason, I look at things from different perspectives. For example, loosing a job is an opportunity to start a new one. What you learn and awaken within you in every step you walk, and applying these to your life bring growth, maturity, positivism and joy. I truly believe the doors open up when you follow the signs.
What the future holds?
I consider myself a world citizen with strong roots in Turkey, UK and Germany. I can move to another part of the world if the conditions call for it. I am happily settled down in Cologne at the moment.