Meet the Chief: Claudia Lambrichs-Lindenbergh
Tell us about yourself.
My name is Claudia, I’m 35 and moved from Amsterdam to Berlin in 2015, where my family and I have felt at home since day one.
I’m an enthusiast by nature and enjoy spreading energy to others since I have plenty of it! I’m currently training to be a Reiki Master but in my spare time, I’m a busy bee! I love to hang out with friends and always make the most out of my life for myself and my family.
When did you join ForChiefs? And what’s the story that led you there?
After having spent 10 years building and optimizing workforces in the technology space – for rapidly growing startups as well as established organizations – I felt it was the right time to start a business of my own, so I co-founded ForChiefs. I couldn’t have ever imagined that it would turn out like this!
All my different life experiences have added up to being able to do this kind of work: I became independent at a pretty young age, faced some tough family experiences, have a very strong intuition and pick up on a lot of things. I’ve learnt it pays to be persistent, to believe in your capabilities, and that you can reach so much more than you initially think if you manifest the hell out of life.
What is your main area of expertise?
I find it somewhat difficult to say that I see myself as an expert on a particular theme. I see myself more as someone who has a strong intrinsic drive and passion to help leaders become the best versions of themselves and offer them the tools/insights to see what’s possible. Perhaps the moment when your work is in line with your talents and values, it doesn’t feel like being an expert on something?
That being said, I think my strength lies in being able to see something within someone before they realise it themselves. I love combining the left and right sides of my brain in business, but there’s also a higher understanding to unlock true potential. I try and integrate this into everything I do.
Who are the clients you work with?
I have the honor of working with some amazing leadership teams and individual leaders from large global corporates and sparky scale-ups across Europe. No matter the size of the business, what everyone has in common is a true desire to become a better leader or a more coherent leadership team.
What makes your approach different compared to other trainers/moderators/consultants?
If I base it on the feedback that I get from my clients, I think my lightness, speed and impact, non-complexity, energy and a strong sense of intuition.
I truly see myself as a sidekick to a leader or leadership team, rather than just a ‘coach’ or a ‘trainer’. I don’t simply try and transfer my knowledge to them, as some more traditional trainers do, or only ask questions, but invest in the relationship with every leader, helping them with impulses, new perspectives, and ultimately reaching what they want in a fast-paced manner. In the end, it’s about delivering the most impact and being practical…combined with lightness, of course!
How do you work together with the other ForChiefs?
I love working together with my fellow Chiefs. I have set myself a clear intention that I always want to team up with a Chief – except when doing individual coaching – because it’s simply way more fun! I learn more, get instant feedback, and get inspired by the others. That’s the beauty of manifestation: if it’s what you really want and strongly believe in, you can make it happen for yourself 🙂
I’ve built a leadership journey with Hugo and David, teamed up on leadership coaching journeys with Sofieke, and have worked with almost everyone at certain points on certain themes – from vision & strategy sessions to MBTI work sessions, unconscious bias/diversity sessions, and development of different modules to equip leaders in their day to day challenges.
As well as this, I work at least one day a week on building the company, which I absolutely love. It’s an amazing challenge if you have a carte blanche to build from in the way you’ve always dreamed of (which, by the way, is not easy so I have even more respect for founders!).
How did you become an expert in what you do?
I’ve mostly learned from what I’ve seen and experienced while working with leaders and founders throughout my career, and from having been a leader myself.
I learnt from my experience of building a startup from conception to operating in 10 countries, leading People Teams, supporting Portfolio Companies with people challenges, and setting up leadership development programs, what an impact great leadership can make. It’s definitely not the product that builds the company, but the people. Helping leaders scale in a healthy way and helping them with their growing pains is something we are passionate about.
What’s the best piece of advice you can give people?
Be aware that your energy introduces you before you even speak. People pick up so much more than the words you speak. Therefore make sure that, especially as a leader, you not only focus on what you say, but equally on who you are, how you say things, and what you radiate.
Which article, podcast, video or book do you think everyone would benefit from reading/listening to?
The Rules of the Mind from Marissa Peer.
What’s the most interesting thing you’ve learned during your time with ForChiefs?
That you can truly create the work environment you want/need and that the moment you have found that sweet spot work doesn’t feel like “work” anymore.
What’s the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome professionally or personally, since joining ForChiefs?
I always thought that being perfect means being the best in everything. Now I know that it’s simply about being the best version of yourself, whoever that may be.
How do you think leadership is changing or will change in the future?
Companies are currently in an era of scaling at a rapid pace. They are expanding into multiple countries within a year and teams are going through hypergrowth to match. Imagine being a leader in this setting. This comes with so many challenges: not only do leaders need to grow constantly their teams, while maintaining 110% productivity, they also have to grow themselves as leaders and face group dynamics that have never existed before. This requires ‘energetic leadership’.
However, being an energetic leader still has the connotation of being someone who knows everything about everything, is able to handle whatever is thrown at them, someone has an extroverted personality, and who is required to give all their energy to others.
I believe that ‘energetic leadership’ needs to means something else:
Being a leader is a slice of your wholeness. If you need to leave your true self at your doorstep in the morning, it will cost you a lot of energy. Many leaders I’ve worked with experience a lot of pressure, high expectations from their team members, from the board or investors, from their partner, their children, or their friends, but mostly from themselves: from trying to be perfect in everything they do and accommodate all these needs. We can easily fill our lives reacting to others, but in order to be more in the driver’s seat of your own life, you have to free up mental space, you have to guard your energy, be conscious about where the energy is leaking, and make sure there’s the time, but mostly energy, to manifest what you want and radiate the right energy.
How will you navigate and grow with these changes?
It’s down to you! By increasing your self-awareness, you are instantly able to better lead yourself and therefore others. You feel more connected to what’s important to you and how you can make use of your talents, become the leader you are meant to be, not the one you think you should be. People register when you say one thing but mean something else, when you pretend to know it all, or when you try to shut down your emotions. One of the most impactful ways to build trust is by showing vulnerability. But, vulnerability in a way that it works for you, not against you.
We spend so much time at work, how amazing would it be if every leader brought in more of themselves, and by that build stronger bonds and a more happy and productive team?
What is your purpose now and for the future?
It is my personal purpose ignite empowerment. I believe that everyone can feel empowered but sometimes, it might feel like you’ve lost that sense of ownership, which just needs to be re-ignited. Sparking the feeling that you can manifest what you want, that you are not a victim of a system or life, being absolutely honest with yourself about what you really want to be and then do everything you can to reach that. This is why I feel I am here.
Any final words?
Do not underestimate the power of your mind. Whatever you think or feel about yourself, you get served on a platter. Focus on the person you want to be(come).
How can people get in touch with you?