Mpowered. By Women for Women: Helga Ellul Part 2

Mpowered. By Women for Women: Helga Ellul Part 2

The second part of our interview with the amazing Helga Ellul!

During our last podcast interview, Trudy Kerr spent an hour talking to the amazing Helga Ellul and she only covered her career. That is why we invited her for Part 2 because we were sure that this lady had so much more to say! 

We started the discussion about her present-day consultancy business. Scroll down to listen to the full podcast. 

‘I choose the companies that I work with wisely. I do not just work with anyone. I make sure that they are ethical and good people. I also have a preference for family companies since they still have difficulty sometimes to put the emotional and business separate. I try to teach them that business is business. I teach them to not force their children into the business. I feel that people need to want to be the business and that is the only way that they will be good. I experienced that with Playmobil since it was a family run company. The children didn’t stay in the company. Don’t impose on your children.’

Helga claims that the biggest difficulty of some of her clients, especially women, is to let go of the day-to-day things and start delegating. ‘A problem a lot of people face when you run a company is that you get buckled in the day-to-day. You need to think of the next steps and delegate tasks to other people. That is the only way to bring the business forward.’

But does Helga ever think about taking it easy after a very long and successful career? ‘I thought about taking it easy but I was still too much into the business sense so I couldn’t let go. Now, I’m starting to ease up a little bit. I love to paint with one of my granddaughters.’



Moving on to family and balance, Helga explains that finding that balance was not an easy one. ‘From the very beginning, I always knew that I wanted children, but you still cannot plan when you’re going to get pregnant. I was ready to be a fulltime mother. However, I always said that if I could do both, I will and I was a happier mother because I was still working. I had a good housekeeper which helped. I was lucky who had a husband who had his own business and was flexible. He was a big support in that department. One of us was always there for the children. There weren’t any defined roles in the family. We were just parents, and we did it together as a team. Our children learnt to be responsible and mature and that you had to work to earn money.’

Speaking about motherhood guilt, Helga claims that she felt it too. ‘As a woman, I grew up conservative. My mother was always at home. Sometimes, I used to feel guilty that I was not the typical mother. However, whenever I ask my children about this, they say that they never felt that I lacked as a mother. Due to my career, I also didn’t have a connection with other women and the neighbourhood. I had to make that extra effort for people to get to know me and I them.’

The weekend is sacred for Helga as she reserves the weekend to her family. Although she is very disciplined about this, she admits that it is getting harder and harder to disconnect from the world since we are constantly accessible via our phone.

Helga, the incredible role model that she is, departs with a few words of wisdom for women in business.

‘You only have one life, and you have to be happy in it. Have a life which fulfils you. I believe that only then can you have a good life and be a good mother. Your fulfilment will portray to your kids. Be honest and say what you want from the very beginning – you and your partner have to do it together. A career is important, and it will fulfil you. However, I believe that, at the end of the day, your family’s needs should come first. My career was my personal fulfilment but when I decided to have a family, I knew they will always be my priority.’

Thank you, Helga for being with us for two whole podcasts. You are an inspiration, not just as a businesswoman, but also as a mother and a wife!

Listen to the full podcast here and read part 1 HERE.