“Through EU expertise and feminine leadership, I unlock transformation of individuals to find their authentic voice & flow, teams to fulfil their mission via emotionally intelligent collaboration, and organisations to walk the talk of inclusion and well-being. Let’s explore this possibility.

Hello beautiful soul! 

I am Lucia. I have a feeling you have been guided here because you are curious to explore how we can co-create transformation in the EU. Maybe you wonder why a public servant would embark on a rather unorthodox journey of political campaigning or podcast production. Or maybe because you have noticed commonalities in our life journeys. Are you curious to dig deeper into the story of how I went about re-discovering my passions and creating new forms of self-expression to feel more alive, aligned and impactful? Welcome and read on.

What am I about?

I am a Brussels-based EU official. I love pushing my limits, empowering other changemakers and elevating consciousness level of our organisations and society at large. I call this a passion for “technology of transformation”. At first it evolved from a career in hard-core tech industry. As I started digging deeper into the “softer” tech of human transformation through a new leadership paradigm and talent management, a much clearer vision started emerging for me. Now I bring all of this together – be it in my work in the European institutions or in my pro bono projects. All of it evolved to another level after my experiment with political campaigning when I ran in the 2019 European elections. I am still a European public servant in my heart. But I am also committed to bridging the policy world with general public and empowering talented men and women to raise their game and become more effective agents of change. I do this as a burnout expert, women empowerment coach, public speaker & host.

Born in post-communist Czechoslovakia…

I was growing up together with the democracy around me – in a society formatted by decades of absence of free expression, values-based leadership and respect for fundamental freedoms. My childhood was marked by experiences that appeared normal only for those who grew up eastwards of the Iron Curtain – how special it feels to have pineapples on the Christmas table or to have access to high street fashion imported from Austria. I perfectioned my discipline, strength and flexibility in gymnastics trainings and foreign language classes, wondering how much extra work is necessary for somebody ‘like me’ to succeed in the bigger world.

Integration was THE cool subject back in the 90s. 

Despite my Greenpeace activism period while at high school, ecology was not cool enough (for my family) to trust that I’d find a decent job. So I chose to study international relations and European affairs as my first Master’s degree. Feeling an insatiable urge for more exposure to outside reality, I went through countless unpaid internships in business, national parliament, foreign ministry or embassies. Selling ice cream and washing public bathrooms on the American East Coast taught me a lot about managing multiple jobs and building one’s dream bottom up. EU-funded exchange programs like Erasmus and Leonardo da Vinci internships unleashed my European soul and never let it get squeezed back into Slovak-only box. 

My first work on ‘women’s agenda’ was about female genital mutilation. 

I remember standing in the Bratislava office of UNIFEM, the United Nation’s fund for women, flipping through their brochures. I can still feel the goosebumps. You know how overwhelming the feeling can be when you are looking at the beauty of African nature and colourful people? Now combine that with horrifying pictures, statistics and stories of violence that endangers and ruins lives of millions of women every year. I was shocked and disgusted. I couldn’t not act. My first step was to write my thesis about violence against women and gender equality across various cultural spaces in the world. My dream job was working against FGM in UN’s New York headquarters. While keeping it on my bucket list, my dream came true thanks to my other projects for empowering women at an international level.

LSE taught me to surf on the interface of public sector and business.

My first real job was almost like a real-life MBA – in a boutique consultancy providing market-entry advisory to companies wishing to enter Central European markets. Having experienced the challenges of start-up entrepreneurs and also those of large public sector organisations, I got even more committed to a career that is on the intersection of these two worlds. 

Studying my masters in Public Management and Governance at the London School of Economics was tailor-made for this career desire – shape the policy decisions of the EU governments one day. That year was one of the most intense experiences in my life. From fundraising for tuition fees and quick acquisition of academic writing skills, through standing up to the expectations set by our professors from Harvard, to keeping up with the uncompromising commitment to excellence of my study group. It was a springboard to many amazing experiences that followed. 

Testimonial video for LSE Careers office

IT careers = springboard to e-government but also education activism

Upon my graduation, I was headhunted by one of the Slovak tech leaders to advise on growth of their e-government projects and design their corporate social responsibility strategy. I became the voice of the Slovak employers in driving the debate about linking education and labour markets and the need to monitor graduates’ employability. It was a deeply fulfilling period during which I had a chance to discover the recipe for my own productivity and flow; and to co-create a true shift in public debate and in career choices of thousands of students.

Somewhere between designing a smartphone-enabled authentication solution for electronic elections and campaigning for rights of teachers during one of their biggest strikes ever, I received another one of the so-called once-in-a-lifetime offers. After a two-years long lasting selection process, I was hired by the European Commission in Brussels.

Since 2013, policy-shaping from the European Commission 

  1. At first, I was in charge of ‘skills and digital’ for the tourism sector – supporting the EU’s small businesses with the right training strategies and tools to face the digital revolution, rise of online platforms and sharing economy.
  2. Then I moved to an area where the EU got an exclusive regulatory competence: public procurement. I worked on the more geeky side of developing e-procurement solutions but also on a more political side of assisting Slovakia and Czech Republic in reforming their procurement systems.
  3. In 2016, the year of the first Slovak presidency in the Council of the EU, I was seconded to the team of the Slovak diplomats in Brussels, helping them advance the proposals related to e-government through the legislative process.
  4. My latest role was in advising the European Commission’s senior management about industrial policy – from Brexit negotiations through smarter use of data to diversity & inclusion. Helping our industry prepare for Brexit was one of those once-in-a-lifetime career opportunities – elevating my policy skills but also sending me off to a burnout break (which became a gift on its own, as you’ll find out below).
  5. As a member of the Equality Task Force of Commissioner Helena Dalli, I had a unique chance to help reflect equality in its broadest sense in the EU’s policy. The best part was that I was appointed to this role because I had become known for my passion to empower women as a coach and mentor.

In and out of office, I am the voice of femininity in Europe

I stand for transformation through feminine leadership and work culture that works for all genders and generations. As a coach, mentor and host of various networks, I support women’s self-expression in the worlds of politics, policy and large-scale impact. Powered by collaboration with the Global Institute for Evolving Women, I believe that the promise of inclusive and prosperous Europe will only be delivered if feminine principles are re-inserted into the way we design, adopt, implement and communicate our policies and projects.  

In 2019, 14.896 Slovaks gave me their personal votes in the European Parliament elections

Yes, it’s rather unusual for a bureaucrat to run as a political candidate. Yet, for me, it was the only place that felt right – in the view of Slovakia’s lowest turnout rates in the European elections, massive rise of far-right extremism, years of traumatising work on handling the Brexit process and consequences on millions of citizens and businesses…

So I took my first sabbatical and experienced a massively challenging yet fulfilling endeavour – road-tripping around Slovakia and discussing the ins and outs of our EU membership. Similarly to building a startup, it was a priceless lesson in leadership, management, communication, fundraising, product development, PR and much more. Similarly to exiting (the startup or any life experiment into the unknown), my return to my Brussels matrix was anything but a comeback to a policy life as I knew it.  

Get in touch if you’re called to explore how I can support you – either as a political candidate or as a female change maker in any other domain!

Podcasting Lights on Europe for those curious about humans of the Brussels bubble

Lights on Europe is one of the channels through which I help shine more light on ‘the story behind the story’ of Brussels and those who stand for advancing the EU. Listen to my interviews with the EU change makers to tune into their passions and hacks for successful EU careers – from policy experts through lobbyists and activists, to top level leaders like the European Commission’s Vice-President Margrethe Vestager.

Check it out on all podcast platforms or my YouTube channel – hope it will be one of the resources transforming your outlook on how we can all impact Europe.

Today I empower women, parents and all burnout hero(in)es to become even more radiant, energised and impactful

It is my inner work that makes massive outer impact possible. After years of studying and experiencing various healing modalities, I passionately share these gifts with people seeking more flow, authenticity and productivity.

My 1on1 coaching offer attracts mainly those who identify themselves as

  • young professionals in the field of EU/global policy careers,
  • women desiring to rediscover and express their feminine qualities,
  • newborn mothers wondering how to have it all in their own way,
  • creators looking to avoid (another) burnout to maximise their impact – in collaboration with Burnout Heroes.

Let’s speak if deep down you know there is a way for a more authentic life in flow.

They say I’m good at building bridges between disconnected worlds; mediating between communities that feel misunderstood; unleashing the talent that would otherwise remain unseen; converting ideas into roadmaps. Without a fear of failure, unpaid invoices, embarrassment or burnout.

If the above resonates and you’re looking for a mentor who’s been through the same struggles, book a short call with me and in the meantime, continue reading.