Planet Venus Women: Vibeke Foss

Meet Vibeke!

The optimistic, hard-working entrepreneur, and founder, of her very own company Gorgeous Geek Web Design gave us an insight about herself and her life as a website developer.

Read her full interview below and get inspired by her positive energy and work ethic!

Tell us about yourself – who are you?

I am originally from Norway. But I have lived abroad for 20 years. I left when I was 25. I just kind of always wanted to go places. During my first year abroad I went to the States as an AuPair, and when I came back I was like “Oh my god, the world!”

I’ve been living abroad, not so much traveling around, but rather changing the countries where I live and from where I work. I’ve been in the States, Australia, France, Switzerland and I ended up here, in Barcelona. I’ve been here for 14 years now and I’m not going anywhere!

I like Barcelona, even when I have days when I get tired of the city, I can always use Barcelona as a base to go to other places. I’m fortunate that with my business I can go anywhere.

I’m quite curious about things, super open-minded. I especially like meeting people – not just to hear about their jobs or what they had for dinner – but rather deeper things, real things. I want to connect with people in a more real way which works well for my business.

Part of my job is getting to know someone and their project – getting into someone’s dream!

So, I’m not traveling that much right now, but I still feel connected to the world because Barcelona is so international.

Describe yourself with 3 words.

Efficient, reliable and optimistic!

What do you do?

My company is called Gorgeous Geek Web Design. I build WordPress websites and my target market is coaches and small businesses.

For marketing purposes, building coaching websites because it is something I know I’m specialized in. I understand what the coaches need, not just technically but also the messaging, so that their website really connects with their target market. I also have an interest in self-development,

I like coaches’ way of looking at life in terms of “What can we do?” and “What can we improve?”, as opposed to just looking at all the problems.

The technical side of building websites though is not the biggest part of my job. It’s all the talk-through conversations. I help them understand how to communicate on their website, such as which words to use and how to present exactly what they do and who they do it for.

I realized in my first years that when people come to me they don’t know what they need on their websites; they don’t know how to communicate through their websites. “How do you get people to read something these days?”, I like to help with that part. In the end, it goes hand in hand for me, building the website and talking about how to communicate what they want to.

How do you get visible in the jungle, how do you define what you do as opposed to what others do?” All of that is very much talked about back and forth in the process.

Everyone has the answers in themselves. It’s just getting the right questions and having the opportunity to sit down and answer them. All of these things are both a business decision as much as a website decision.

Next to my business I run my own female entrepreneur community. That’s because when I started my own business I realized it’s so needed for women to talk about their feelings when they are on their journey. That is more difficult at regular networking events where it’s about presenting yourself and keeping up appearances.

What do you aspire to do?

I would really like to grow my female entrepreneur communities and keep creating supportive and safe spaces for women.

And of course, grow my business – work less and earn more! That’s the plan but how I’m going to get there is still in process, let’s see!

What has been your biggest struggle(s) as an entrepreneur so far?

Learning how to ask for help and support. For example, when I have too much on my plate or a problem; I try to figure out everything on my own instead of just asking someone. I learned it this year because in the past year I had to begin delegating since I had too much work in some periods.

It’s been a good lesson that nothing bad will happen when I choose to trust someone else, although I am used to just doing everything on my own. It’s important for me to deliver a high standard and quality work which is why I’m always concerned whether the people I delegate to will do it well enough, especially on time.

I need the ones I delegate to to understand that deadlines are non-negotiable. I will be a bit strict about it, even though I don’t want to make anyone uncomfortable. But sometimes I have to do that.

I tell this to my clients sometimes as well – don’t spend too much time to figure something out on your own, just ask me because maybe it’s a two-minute job for me!

How are you coping with the pandemic?

I felt like I was going through the stages of grief. The denial, the anger, the sadness, and then the acceptance. (But I feel like I didn’t bargain though haha.)

The first days were difficult because I was home, alone; and everyone just spoke about the virus and was bombarding me with news. It’s not good for the mind to look at the news 24/7. It’s good to know what’s going on but you don’t need to know every little detail. It’s not like no news is gonna reach me!

In general though, even though what is happening is horrible, we can focus on a lot of the good things that nobody seems to be talking about. Just look at the state of the nature only 2 weeks after the quarantine period! It is so happy that we’re just backing off for a while. It’s amazing and maybe it will be a bit of an eye opener.

It can make us more hopeful that it isn’t that impossible to improve the environment!

Also, just having time to connect with yourself because life got so busy for everyone, me included. I always wanted to slow down but didn’t know how to. Always working way too long in DepotLab. So, the first two weeks after the lockdown I was feeling so calm. Because everyone was paralyzed and no one was working. And I found it good because you’re forced to sit down and have a relationship with yourself. I think overall it’s an opportunity to think about your life and what you want. Have time to do the things you really want to do.

A lot of nice things are happening as well. People are finding such great ways of connecting. In my female facebook group we’re having an online meeting to discuss how we can help out one another. I don’t think we would have done it this way if it wasn’t for the situation.

Also, me and another friend are starting a LinkedIn pod, which means we are helping each other get more visibility on LinkedIn.

We also need to rethink how we do business. People are more careful with their investments, and for some businesses it might be necessary to adjust the market they serve to. Still, the world is full of people who are not too scared to spend money right now. Find them and change the offerings.

I’m super inspired because I want to create lower priced offerings right now, such as mini courses that are affordable for individuals, who are not in a position to invest in a web designer, but need some help to get their business online.

I just refuse to focus on the negative things. I know they’re there and I don’t want to minimize their effect, especially if you have been impacted. But if you’re safe and home – do something nice for yourself and other people!

How do you feel about the Planet Venus community?

I was super happy when Deborah took over Planet Venus. I originally wanted to get into Downtown Offices, but the first event I went to was the one when they announced that she is taking over.

I just really like Deborah’s vibe and energy – her enthusiasm. I’m really happy that there are regular get-togethers which are focused on networking; because what I do are more coworking events and I don’t really like to organize the networking events, I don’t enjoy so much managing people.

I think the female entrepreneur groups in Barcelona really balance each other now because each has different offerings. For example, I love that Planet Venus’ meetings are regular and focus on connecting women. Also, since it’s regular I see some of the same women several times. This gives you the opportunity to truly connect with them because they are more on my mind.

I can follow what they do and who they are; I can remember this person now, recommend them or sign up for something they offer or even collaborate!

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