An interview with…Gaia Norway

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Passion, freedom and power. These are the three things that the girls behind Gaia Norway are bursting with and together they have made an organisation that aims to unleash the best in every woman. From yoga to skateboarding, Gaia Norway encourages women to reach for their dreams – and with an expansion to London on the horizon, it certainly seems like they’re reaching for their own! Emilie, Elin and Katarina share with us what it’s like to run a business with bestfriends.

Left to right: Elin, Katarine and Emilie

Left to right: Elin, Katarina and Emilie

Share with us the Gaia story so far.

Em: The Gaia adventure started during the fall of 2013. Together we attended KAN – Kvinner, Ambisjoner, Nettverk, (Women, Amibition, Network), and figured out that all three of us had a great passion for female empowerment. We had just started our studies at Markedshøyskolen and in one of the courses the exam was to start up a small business and write a business plan. We didn’t actully have to go through with it (they won’t force you to run a business), but we were very excited about Gaia and got a lot of good feedback, so we figured “why not”?!.

We went all in – got a lot of help from our teachers and friends at MESH to create our brand, make a killer pitch and other important first steps. In February 2014 we arranged our first seminar with mindblowing feedback – an amazing start and a huge motivation for us. We started by arranging one seminar a month, with different topics and guest speakers.

In the fall of 2014 we started up with different activities so the girls could actually experience, and not only listen, what we wanted to communicate. And this is still what we offer – different events and activites that focus on self confidence, personal growth and going out of your comfort zone.

Nowadays we’re travelling the world, working from sunny beaches in Morocco to trendy entrepreneur cafees in London, then coming home to Oslo for the events. This is an amazing way for us to get new inspiration, to expand our network and experience the many beautiful places of the world. We are living our dreamlife and doing our very best to inspire others to do the same!

What motivated you to start Gaia?

Em: We believe that we have found the perfect recipe for a life filled with laughter, progress, energy, happiness, passion, freedom and gratitude. This is something we want for all women, and it is why we founded Gaia. Our comany is all about inspiring women to lead the life that they want to live.

How many people on average do you get coming to your events?

Em: It really depends on the event. When we arranged seminars we hosted around 50 people. With other events we find it easer to reach out to people and to build a good bond and community with a smaller group. Around 15 girls is usually perfect.

What were the most crucial first steps to make Gaia successful?

Em: An important part of making Gaia work was for us to realize that working with your best friends can be a challenge and that it is important to seperate the business and friendship. I think that an important step was to implement the “truth-hour” where we are very direct and open with each other. Constructive feedback and absolute honesty is key.

I also believe that opening up and telling everyone around us about Gaia was important. That way we got a lot of help, feedback, inspiration, new ideas and people we talked to put us in contact with people that could be of help. We have a lot of drive and passion about what we’re doing, but we know we’re not best at everything in this world, so by sharing our idea, trusting others and being open we got a great start with help from many fantastic and skilled people.


You’ve got a really visually-pleasing image for Gaia. How did this come about?

Em: We wanted the image for Gaia to be positive and energetic and therefore decided on a colourful profile. We have a lot of talented friends who work in this area, and we got help and feedback creating the image for our brand.

What is the main mission behind your concept?

Em: We want to inspire women, all over the world, to lead the lives that they want to live, and to be the ultimate version of themselves. It’s easy to fall in to old patterns and to live life with the attitude “good enough is good enough”, but we want to challenge women to live their dream life everyday!

When did you know that you were onto a good thing?

El: Maybe the first seminar we ever hosted, the feedback was amazing and the vibe was great. There were so many amazing women coming together to learn from each other and to support each other. So that was basically the first time we got feedback on Gaia, and we felt that something was about to start. After some months we participated in the national fair and won two prizes. The win was a great confirmation for us that we had done something right the last months. What’s important to say is that it has always felt right which is basically the most important, because as long as it does, we will keep on working to achieve new goals!

Can you share the perks and downfalls of working with friends?

El: Haha, this is a tricky one. First of all working with your best friends is totally amazing as you get to create amazing experiences together, you have a lot of fun, and you know each other extremely well. The hard part about it is when you involve the “business” part. Sometimes we disagree on strategy, deadlines and so on, and it could be challenging to confront each other when we know the reason why something hasn’t been done and so on.

That being said we would consider it to be more perks than downfalls because we have such honest relationships. Working with your best friends is amazing, and when you hit a challenge, you can always learn from it!


Describe an average day working with Gaia.

El: This changes due to what we are working on. If we have events coming up that is mainly the focus. Nowadays we are preparing for this autumn, where we will launch three big concepts. So our focus now is concept development, preparing practicalities, sales, scaling strategies and so on.

What has been your favourite moment on the Gaia journey so far?

El: The thing is that even if there are some extremely good moments, we have an amazing time working together almost everyday. But the events are always a highlight because it’s amazing to meet all the wonderful women and see the development. If we were to pick one it would probably be the first seminar – there’s just something about the excitement and amazing feedback that day that makes it a great moment!

And the most challenging moment?

El: The moment we disagreed on the vision and mission for Gaia. It was actually just a miscommunication. We were crying, laughing, talking for hours, but after a long day working on the 5 year plan for Gaia, it was all good. We were back on track, for sure.

I like that we have different opinions, but respect one and another so we always end up with something special. It takes a lot of time, but in the end we are all happy.

What do you love most about running your own business?

K: I like the passion part, working with something that gets me up in the morning, puts a smile on my face, makes me go running and eat healthy. I’m the boss of my day, that`s just like a dream. And the most awesome part is that I work with my two best friends – is that possible – eh yes it is!! It can be a challenge, but I like that. I love that we are running Gaia in the best way, in our way, and we are all doing what we love – empowering women and kicking ass!

What is your vision for the future of Gaia?

K: Thats a big one! We are taking over the world kind of big. We want to make a change, Gaia is the start. Simple, make people live there life to the fullest! DAMN WOMAN!

What advice can you share with Incubate readers?

K: What are you waiting for? – Those were the magic words of Anders, Co-fouder at Mesh the event KAN (Kvinner ambisjoner og nettverk) 2013. Do not think too much on that one, just do it! We live in Norway, the worst that could happen is that you have to start all over, or that you find out that this world is not for you – beacuse if you are good (and you really want to do it) – you make it work!

Gaia’s parting words.

K: It’s up to you to decide how your life is going to be – make it fabulous!

Visit to sign up to their classes and join in on the laughter.

Tiffany is the creator of Incubate Magazine. When she is not writing for Incubate or freelance gigs, she gets cosy with a book, wishes for an ugly dog and pines for the countryside. She has a Bachelor degree in Journalism and is currently studying a Bachelor in Business.

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