From Tehran to Berlin, from child refugee to entrepreneur with an annual turnover of 150 million euros and a staff of 60: Jasmin Taylor is self-assured, self-reliant – and a self-made woman par excellence. She tells She’s Mercedes about making a fresh start in Germany, surprising role models and personal moments of happiness.
It’s worth taking a look back in history in order to understand Jasmin Taylor. To protect their youngest daughter from war-torn life in Iran, Taylor’s parents decided to send her into the great unknown – and back then Germany was the only country that admitted children under 18 years of age. ”When I left Tehran at 17, it was in a state of full-blown war. The school or my parent’s house were forever being evacuated; even a birthday party which I fortunately missed was bombed. My parents and my elder brothers and sisters had to stay behind – I travelled to Germany all on my own.”
Making a fresh start in a new country was extremely tough for shy Jasmin. “I hadn’t even been on holiday without my parents, and now I was suddenly supposed to organise my whole life on my own – without being able to speak a word of German, of course. But I very quickly established a life of my own, virtually from scratch, learnt the language and sat my ‘Abitur’ exams.” Taylor’s constant companions throughout were her energy, commitment and plenty of sparkling, stalwart optimism. Little stepping stones along the way: proudly conducting her first telephone conversation in the foreign language. Organising her own apartment. The unconditional support of her family, who gave her a new chance. The feeling of fearlessness always accompanied by a mischievous smile. And finally an awareness that peace and freedom cannot be taken for granted.
Another thing which cannot be taken for granted is being recognised as the businesswoman she is. “A broad-shouldered man in a suit is assumed capable of just about anything. But a short woman in high heels has to prove her credentials over and over again. I sit on the IT board of a travel organisation, and in the beginning I wasn’t even allowed to finish a sentence. That has changed – because I know when to put my foot down and I’ve shown what I’m worth.” The forceful manager of JT Touristik is no longer someone to be brushed aside. Her innate supreme confidence provides her with a firm anchor. “I believe I would be capable of starting a new life anywhere. In South America or wherever.”
In the third episode of “One Minute – One Opinion” Jasmin Taylor reveals when she first felt that she had truly settled in and where her fearlessness derives from.