Woman in Innovation: Marika Vrieling
"Innovation allows us to tackle challenges in new ways."

Each Wednesday we interview women in our community about innovation and what drives them to make a difference in their industries everyday!

Marika is the Chief Organiser at Space to Be, one of the businesses in The Mill House Social Enterprise Accelerator 2018.

What are you working on?
I work alongside clients to help make their ‘spaces’ function better. This generally starts with clarifying how they want to use a particular room, either at home or at work, and then decluttering unwanted items. I find that by helping people to get rid of what they no longer need or use, we can set up spaces that are relaxing and/or productive. I am also continuing to develop partnerships to help match high-quality, unwanted items to people or organisations who can make use of them.

Why is innovation important to you?
Innovation allows us to tackle challenges in new ways. We can make use of tools that allow us to work more efficiently, make meaningful connections with others, and automate the boring parts of life. If we take advantage of new technologies to make our lives easier, we can free up time and energy to focus on making a difference in the lives of our families and communities.

What drives you to make a difference?
I love helping people create a home that they love coming home to. The concept of creating ‘space’ is what drives me – whether it is space in your home because you have cleared out all of your clutter, or space in your head because you have been able to simplify your life. I know the difference clearing out the things you have been holding onto makes to your productivity at work and your happiness in your personal life. I want to help people take that first step in simplifying all of their spaces as well as their lives more generally.

Do you have any advice for getting more women into the innovation ecosystem?
Find your tribe. Starting your own business doesn’t need to be so terrifying but many of us get caught up in waiting until everything is perfect before we take the leap. If you can find a group of people who can see what you are trying to do, can help validate your ideas, and maybe give you a little push, you will probably get moving a lot faster. And don’t be afraid to ask for help.

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