Expat Magazine

Tiptoe Through the Tulips with Stephanie Ward

By Clogsandtulips @clogsandtulips

Tiptoe Through the Tulips with Stephanie WardI am pleased to welcome Stephanie Ward to the Tiptoe Through the Tulips Interview series! Stephanie is a Small Business marketing coach through her own company Firefly Coaching. With 12 years as an expat in the Netherlands under her belt, Stephanie has some excellent things to share here. Welcome Stephanie!
How long have you been living in the Netherlands and what brought you here?
Wednesday, January 26, 2011 marked twelve years of living in the Netherlands with my love. He is the reason I moved here.
Do you plan to stay in the Netherlands, move back to your home country, or try somewhere else?
I don’t have any plans to move anywhere and I always say, “never say never.” I really feel at home here and love the life we’ve created together. If some fantastic opportunity emerged for us that involved moving to another country (my home country of the US or somewhere else), I’d consider it.
What do you do during the day (job, stay at home mom, entrepreneur, student, etc)?
I’m an entrepreneur and started my business, Firefly Coaching, in 2002. I’m a Marketing Coach for Small Business owners. I help my clients attract more clients and grow their businesses. I offer a free special report, 7 Steps to Attract More Clients in Less Time at my websitehttp://www.fireflycoaching.com/. There are also loads of free marketing articles, videos, and posts on my website.
Many of my clients are expats and I also work with small business owners who are locals in their various cities. Since I do all of my marketing coaching over the telephone and via e-mail, I can work with people all over the world.
It’s a thrill to help small business owners build a business that allows them to do what they love and earn a living.
What’s the most notable difference between your home country and the Netherlands? 
Many of the differences are quite subtle and took me years to discover. One that I noticed right away, and am used to now, is the directness of the Dutch. It’s great to be able to say what you think and have others do the same and no one takes it personally (for the most part).
Where is your favorite place to visit in the Netherlands?
I love to visit Amsterdam for a day of big city life. Maastricht is fabulous for a weekend getaway. And of course, I love Apeldoorn where I live. I’m so close to nature, I just hop on my bike and within five minutes I’m in the forest (the Veluwe).
Tiptoe Through the Tulips with Stephanie WardGive us one thing you love about the Netherlands and one thing you loathe…
I love the flat landscape that makes biking a breeze. I’m not so thrilled about the lack of patient queuing.
What’s one thing you’ve had to adjust to since coming to the Netherlands and how did you adjust (or are you still working on it)?
Customer service is a different experience in the Netherlands, much different from the US. It’s not that people here simply don’t care, part of it is a cultural difference related to the concept that all people are equal. People keep doing whatever they’re doing until they’re done with it and then they acknowledge you and offer service. I wish I could say, “I’m over it” but I’m still working on it.
Do you have an embarrassing moment since you’ve moved that you would like to share with us (an unfortunate language blunder, or a funny getting-back-on-the-bike story)?
Um yeah, I do. I suppose everyone does. When I first moved here I noticed that many of the buses (which state their destination on the front of the bus) were headed to Buitendienst. I thought it was strange that so many buses were going to that one place and wondered where in the world it was located. When I finally discovered that the word Buitendienst means “Not in Service” I had to laugh out loud as well as feel a bit foolish. But hey, I learned a new word.
What’s the best piece of advice you received that you would like to pass along to anyone coming to the Netherlands?
Pay attention to how things work Tiptoe Through the Tulips with Stephanie Wardand what people say. Don’t assume that things will go the way you’re used to them going in your home country. You can pick up a lot just by being aware and paying attention. And of course, as much of a struggle as it was for me, life is much sweeter when you learn the local language.
Do you have any blogs or websites that you would like to recommend?
For learning Dutch I highly recommendhttp://www.talencoach.nl/. For Dutch news in English check out http://www.dutchnews.nl/. And to find out what’s happening around the country have a look athttp://www.iamexpat.nl/ and http://www.expatica.com/.

You Might Also Like :

Back to Featured Articles on Logo Paperblog

These articles might interest you :

  • Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race 2017 – Daily Updates – Day 4 – Alan Young

    Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race 2017 Daily Updates Alan Young

    Self-Transcendence 3100 Mile Race 2017 - Daily Updates - Day 4 ?Ray K was my houseguest as we were not required for "security " duties. ?About 1 am we reached... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Abichal
  • Summer Festival Preview: Tanglewood

    Summer Festival Preview: Tanglewood

    Another summer under the trees offers gods, rainbows and Mahler. by Paul J. Pelkonen The Koussevitsky Concert Shed at Tanglewood, guarded by a really big... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Superconductor
  • What is The Death Gate and What Happens When It Opens

    What Death Gate Happens When Opens

    A mystery artist has created a puzzle to be solved in the form of The Deathgate... and it opens on 30 June. It's counting down right now! It may not seem obviou... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Tomatrax
  • Reasons Why the UK is Better Than Ohio

    Reasons Better Than Ohio

    Well, I just felt like listing a few of the things that make the UK better than Ohio. The UK is twice as big as Ohio (242,900 sq.km versus 116,096 sq. Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Ravenswingthog
  • A Sense Of Possession In The Industry

    One of the things that I love about music is the sense of possession you get out of it. The fact that you can have a record that is your favorite record of all... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Indiemusicpromo
  • Calling All Meat Lovers: Windy City RibFest Returns to Uptown

    Calling Meat Lovers: Windy City RibFest Returns Uptown

    Windy City RibFest in Uptown will be back again this year to dazzle your taste buds with melt-in-your-mouth slabs of meat and saucy concoctions. Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Urbanmatter Chicago
  • Tinted Glasses

    Tinted Glasses

    To enhance a casual look, tinted glasses are perfect to jazz up your look. This inspired look from the 70s has traced the surface yet again to give a comeback b... Read more

    The 22 June 2017 by   Chayanikarabha