100% passion, 0% alcohol - Interview with Tijen Onaran

She is considered a "digital pioneer" and "an exception in the German digital scene". In March 2021, the Handelsblatt named Tijen Onaran one of 100 women who will advance Germany in the coming years. This is by no means her only award. Manager Magazin ranks her among the top 100 most influential women and the business magazine Capital among the top 40 under 40 talents in German business. Her job titles no longer fit on a business card: moderator, speaker, podcaster, columnist, entrepreneur and bestselling author.

She is a courageous role model for a young generation of female entrepreneurs and, according to her Twitter bio, has made "diversity and inclusion her life's work". A life in which the champagne reception is just as much a part as the after-work wine with the team of her company Global Digital Women. It's been quite a while since the last personal wine delivery. The last occasion that Tijen consciously toasted with alcohol was a digital wine tasting at the beginning of the pandemic. Since then she has been using non-alcoholic alternatives.

The pandemic also has positive effects: realizing that you can do without alcohol.

Did you wake up badly with a bad hangover?
"There was no aha moment, only occasions that were missed, such as dinners with friends or events. The pandemic had a positive effect in that I noticed that you can also do without alcoholic beverages. I noticed relatively quickly that I didn't miss anything and that I got fitter and more productive. ”

She can now use the newly gained energy for her topics. It's not about "higher, faster, further", but about the advantages of a healthy body and a fresh head, which is doubly beneficial to her in the challenging environment as an entrepreneur with a packed schedule.

Why not just wash away the stress with a glass of wine?

Tijen Onaran
Photo: Urban Zintel

How has it changed your life?
"I've found that even a glass of wine during stressful situations can cause a headache the next day. I already have a job that demands a lot of passion and energy, so I try to keep fit and live a healthy life. It's not always successful in all areas, but for the past year it's been very good in the area of ​​abstaining from alcohol." She is also involved in healthy nutrition and is involved in various start-ups, such as recently in Pumpkin Organics, a company specializing in baby food.

How do you stay "strong" in typical drinking situations?
"There's nothing wrong with me, so I don't have to stay "strong". There are currently no external events anyway and if I do meet up with friends digitally, then I fall back on non-alcoholic options.”

One question remains unanswered: What does one of the most important opinion leaders in Germany say toast a successful working day?
"I'm still trying out a lot and I keep noticing that the market for non-alcoholic drinks can be expanded. Because there are some juice spritzers or drinks with flavors, but if you want to get more creative, it gets tight. I do without soft drinks and have no desire for them. Otherwise it will also be a non-alcoholic cocktail.For dinner I like to drink non-alcoholic gin and tonic with your gin, of course!”

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Cover photo: Andrea Heinsohn