Sandrine Gelin-Lamrani was born in Paris – France. She has been a multi-expatriate and a serial entrepreneur for 20 years. She built her international career in consulting, training, coaching ventures over 8 countries, for clients that include big corporations, Stat Ups and NGOs across a wide range of industries – IT, Pharmaceuticals, Cosmetics, Education, Security, Media.
After having been successively based in Istanbul and Casablanca, she moved to Barcelona last year. She is the founder and CEO of G&L Shift®, an international coaching firm that provides Professional Coaching 3.0 approaches and tools to support companies and their employees in their transition, evolution, innovation endeavors, throughout Europe and Africa.
Why did you choose Barcelona?
My family’s international journey took me to Barcelona last year. After an intensive work experience in Istanbul, my husband got an opportunity to lead a global transformational project for his company from Barcelona. This opened new perspectives for my international coaching firm, that I intended to develop further internationally, in Europe and Africa. In a way we can say that I am a «Barcelonian by semi-choice»!
What aspects of the city would you highlight as being positive?
I’d like to highlight what I call the 3 «S» – Sea, Sun & Safety. As «Sea» and «Sun» are self-explanatory, I particularly appreciate the «Safety» side of the town: Barcelona is at the same time easy to navigate and pleasant to explore, almost at any time of the day. And for all the other city’s highlights, it definitely stands the comparison with other iconic cities I have had the privilege to live in: Paris, London, Munich, Casablanca, Istanbul.
What aspects of the city must be improved? How?
I was very surprised by the high level of sound pollution in town. I was not expecting this in a city like Barcelona, that is relatively smaller in size than other cities I have lived in. It would make a significant difference if stricter noise regulation was enforced and a smooth transition towards more quieter vehicles – cars, bus, motorcycles – was implemented.
What do you expect from Barcelona in the coming years?
I hope Barcelona will continue its journey to become an even more cosmopolitan, inclusive, tolerant, prosperous, and sustainable city, making it a «place to be» for conscious international talents. This is a challenge, as it requires the city to reconcile its Catalan tradition with its Intercultural ambition. I am grateful to have the opportunity to make my contribution on that front, helping Barcelona based international companies develop their diversity & inclusion practices, using intercultural best practices.
Which city do you feel as «your city»? What do you miss the most?
I do not identify strongly with one particular city, as I have been a multi-expatriate for many years now. Let’s say I appreciate the specificities of each city I have had the privilege to live in: Paris for its everywhere beauty, London for its countryside feel thanks to its marvelous parks, Munich for its bike friendly urban mobility, Casablanca for its hidden treasures only knowledgeable people know about, and Istanbul for its intense, fluid, spectacular, heterogeneous, inspiring vibes.