In September 2021 our founder, Cristina Muntean, was laying on a beach in Zadar, Croatia. She had gone there for a long weekend as part of her “Europe’s best destinations for remote work” scouting tour.
Those of you who Cristina might also know that you can spot her presence by the pile of books that constantly accompanies her. Zadar wasn’t any different.
In fact, this time Cristina was planning to deliver a strategic storytelling in business workshop to an executive team after her return to Prague. Hence the pile of books on storytelling lying next to her on the beach.
As the sun was getting hotter and the breeze would bring her to life, Cristina’s thoughts started to wander. A phrase caught her attention: “You can never beat a good story with facts; you can only beat it with a better story.”
This made Cristina think. All the conspiracy theories surrounding the Covid vaccine in 2021… how many intelligent people had fallen for them simply because... we missed a better story.
Where was that good story about our health, resilience, and recovery, Cristina was wondering. Why did no one stand up to the challenge to bring us hope with a better story?
COULD THAT SOMEONE BE A WOMAN, her thoughts kept meandering. How amazing would that be, if every single woman in leadership would be an incredible storyteller. How would their teams function, how would their companies function, how would their countries and our world function with more stellar women storytellers at the helm…?
As Cristina was watching the German tourists walking their dogs and smiling at this vision of WISE WOMEN LEADERS COMING TOGETHER TO SHARE STORIES, she remembered that her grandfather Isidor, from her mother’s side, had been a storyteller.
How about that?
Welcome grandpa Isidor into the picture.
In fact, grandpa Isidor had been what people in Cristina’s village in Transylvania, Romania, call a “vornic” – the official designation for the master of ceremonies at weddings.
During the wedding night the vornic would entertain the guests, tell stories about the two families coming together, make announcements (for example about the bride having been “stolen”), and, finally, “call the honor” or accept the wedding gifts on behalf of the newlyweds.
So, Cristina’s grandfather was a vornic and he was a man, her thoughts kept pushing. How comes that we still don’t have women doing this job? And how would that even sound?
HOW ABOUT VORNICA?
And here we go.
Firmly rooted in the traditions that tie Cristina to her family and her small village in Transylvania, Romania, born on a beach in Croatia before her return to Prague, Czech Republic. A name firmly anchored in the past AND in a future where women can and should embrace all possible roles with dignity and grace, and where every woman leader can and should be a masterful storyteller.
ONE MORE THING
There is one more dimension to VORNICA® though.
What we haven’t told you about Cristina’s grandpa Isidor is that he was also illiterate.
Grandpa Isidor could read, but he could not write. He went to school for only two years before having to step up and start working to support his family at the age of 10.
This missing skill has haunted Cristina’s grandfather for the rest of his life. A simple farmer with an incredibly entrepreneurial spirit, he was later thrown into prison for supporting the Romanian anti-communist resistance.
When he got released, his options for work were further reduced. He ended up spending the rest of his productive years as an assistant on the local ambulance, helping with manual labor.
Today we life in a privileged era. We have enough; for the last 50 years we got used to privileges that our ancestors could only dream of.
Today we also tend to take these privileges for granted.
LEARNING AND HAVING ACCESS TO QUALITY EDUCATION IS A PRIVILEGE THAT WE SHOULD NEVER TAKE FOR GRANTED.
At VORNICA® we are convinced that within the next five to seven years PEOPLE WHO FAIL TO UPSKILL TODAY WILL BECOME JOBLESS. This is valid for all roles, from the receptionist to the CEO.
In the light of fast technology advancements, of the increase of hybrid and remote work, of the automatization of production in response to inflation and supply chain disruptions, of the climate change that is becoming clearer by the day, we need to stand up to the challenge.
We need to future-proof ourselves.
This is why VORNICA® IS ESSENTIALLY ABOUT LEARNING.
Our team develops both COMPETENCY AND COMMUNITY, so we can thrive together with dignity, joy and hope.
We are convinced that emotional intelligence, strategic reputation management and personal branding, and wise, humble, purpose-driven leadership are the keys that we, women, need to hold in order to succeed in our careers, leadership, and lives.
This is why the second message embedded in our name VORNICA® is: ELEVATE YOUR COMPETENCIES SO YOU CAN ELEVATE YOURSELF, YOUR CAREER, YOUR TEAM, YOUR ORGANIZATION, YOUR FAMILY, YOUR LIFE, YOUR COUNTRY, OUR REGION, AND OUR WORLD.