Hi, I am Mariska
International business coach for equine entrepreneurs.
Let's start at the beginning,
how did I end up here?
Like many of us, the love for horses started very young. I was 11 years old when I first climbed into the saddle. I've always been quite tall for my age, so when I had my first horse riding lesson, most ponies were already too small for me.
That's why I was put on Gerda and Gerda was a very big horse in my eyes. Even though I found it quite scary, I did not want to let it get the best of me. So, I put my boots in the stirrups and before I knew it I was sitting on this big horse. Although I thought I was very cool, my face spoke volumes. But when I got off again, I knew immediately that I loved it.
Many years between the horses followed, with Ben being my biggest highlight.
I've had the dream of having my own horse ever since I got off big Gerda. It wasn't financially possible at the time, but it didn't matter. Because I got to take care of a horse fulltime whom I could give all my love.
There was a farm near my house and I always pressed my nose to the car window as we drove past to catch a glimpse of the horses. It was my father who (without me knowing) asked them if they could use a caretaker. I was still very young at the time, so they had some doubts, but I was allowed to ride the horses to see if it clicked.
There were two horses there: Ben and Jopper, two cousins. After riding both, I already got a strong impression of what they were like. Jopper was sweet, good and actually the safe choice. Ben was unpredictable ("Ben" is short for Bandit for a reason). But from the very first moment I knew: you belong with me.
The owners, after seeing me with the horses, were also convinced. Our adventure could begin.
As a caretaker your're powerless when the owner makes a decision.
For years I enjoyed my time with Ben. We took private lessons, occasionally entered a competition, but most of all enjoyed riding outside. Our bond was great and I trusted him completely, even though he still had his temper.
But his owner did not have this connection with him and he increasingly perceived his temper as dangerous. Until one day, enough was enough and the choice was made: Ben had to be put down.
There are no words to describe what that did to me. But what I can tell you is that it awakened something in me, which later became the core of Equine Online. I made a promise to myself that I would never let this happen again.
The horses had to make room for my study
Before what happened with Ben, I had to make a choice about which further education I wanted to follow.
Although I, like many of us, would have preferred to do something with horses, we were still recovering from the economic crisis at the time. An education that was future proof was important and "the horses could always be a hobby".
In addition, after the event with Ben, I really had enough of the equine industry for a while. It was a good moment to put the horses on the back burner and focus completely on my studies.
I went to study Communication & Multimedia Design at The Hague University. After four years I graduated with a specialization in Online Marketing, Graphic Design and UX Design (User Experience Design) in my pocket.
Graphic design is what you see on this website. Colors, shapes, everything that fits nicely together.
This is what you as a company rely on a lot. There are many forms of online marketing. From ads to funnels.
This is the piece of design that your eye does not see, but that allows you too easily go through a website.
After my studies I decided to start working full-time.
I started working as a UX designer, which means that I was involved in optimizing user experience on, for example, websites and apps.
Although I started to miss the horses more and more, I tried to focus on my career. After all, that was what was expected of me. I climbed higher and higher up that corporate ladder and before I knew it I was given the job title senior. I flew to America for projects and started at an international job to help teams all over the world towards their final product.
But deep down I felt this wasn't it for me. After helping many different clients, I had to draw a conclusion for myself. I wanted something different, but what?
With many years of experience in my pocket, I went looking for my passion. A quest with alot of bumps.
Some people are blessed with a clear vision that they carry with them from an early age. I didn't have this at all. I knew it had to be something in the equine industry, but then you still have countless possibilities.
Working with horses has always interested me. Especially working with horses who are traumatized. That's probably why Ben and I clicked so well. I definitely see myself training horses in the long run, but at that time it felt like too big of a step. Buying my own horse was not an option yet, so I wanted something 'simple'. You know, to get back into the equine industry.
I decided to sign up for the equestrian masseur training, but everything was canceled because of Covid-19 before I could even begin. It felt like I was back where I started, because I already had tons of plans in my head with what I wanted to do.
So, what now? Hoping to find answers, I decided to do a horse coaching session.
I will use my knowledge and experience for equine entrepreneurs.
As if a light went on inside me, I drew the conclusion for myself: why am I not going to do what I have done for big companies for the equine entrepreneur?
I realize how important it is that the right knowledge is brought into the equine industry, but also how important it is that professionals in the horse world are visible. If we had found someone to help us with Ben, the story could have turned out very differently.
That is why I have made it my mission to put you, the equine entrepreneur, on the map. With my years of experience within the corporate world and my passion for horses, I'll help you build and expand your business. In this way, your information is not only spread, but people can also find you.
So that you can help more horses and their owners and together we can make the equine industry a little better. This way I also keep my own promise. The promise to never let anything like Ben happen again. But I also know that I can't do this alone, but together we can. You with your knowledge about horses, I with my knowledge about building a business.
Is your company still at the beginning or are you looking for an in-depth training on a specific topic? Then this is for you. I have made a series of online training courses for you. Choose what you need and kickstart your business.
Building the business of your dreams isn't always easy. There are so many choices you can make and you don't have the time to make the wrong ones. Let me be your guide and help you realize the business of your dreams.
PRDN Gedragstraining 🇳🇱
“Mariska has helped me enormously with her coaching named 'from Idea to Reality'. I ran into the problem that I was not able to reach my target audience well, I disappeared in my own head. Together with Mariska we have drawn up a concrete plan and I have become a lot wiser. Mariska managed to put me in action and I can also apply her advice in other situations. I really recommend Mariska!
Larissa van Renswoude
Acupressuur voor dieren 🇳🇱
“I really enjoyed going through this process. There was very nice and clear communication and quick responses when you have questions. I have felt comfortable with Mariska from the start.
During the coaching calls it was always fun with so much positive feedback. And that positive kick in the butt certainly did some good too. I'm really thankful to her for that!”
This is my story, this is
who i am, this is my why
I understand better than anyone what you facein the equine industry. I understand the stigmas you have to deal with. But above all, I understand your ambition.
I would love to help you move forward with your business. So that you can help more horses with your knowledge. This way we, together, can make the equine industry a little better.
Do you also feel that connection with me? Then I would like to invite you to schedule a call with me. I would like to get to know you better (without any obligation). I would just like to hear more about your ambitions so I can think along with you and share the things that I am seeing for you. No matter what happens, you'll get something valuable for yourself out of this call and perhaps also a very nice collaboration. So, do I speak to you soon?