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Nate’s Notes 71: Niki den Nieuwenboer | Dyslexia & Rejecting Norms

By May 15, 2023June 8th, 2023No Comments

Niki den Nieuwenboer

Professor at the University of Kansas

Niki’s Lessons:

Niki den Nieuwenboer is a fascinating person with an inspiring story, and I love the lessons she shared today.

First, don’t always believe what other people say about you. At a young age Niki was tested and told that she wasn’t smart. She would later learn that she had dyslexia, but she never let that stop her. She eventually earned two masters degrees and a PhD because she just kept on trying and rejected the labels that others placed on her.

Second, work your way around whatever norms and expectations might be holding you back. The school environment didn’t fit with how Niki learned, so she had to figure out her own way to still learn and navigate college. This experience helped her become an independent thinker–she doesn’t care about the bureaucracy that other people created because it wasn’t made for people like herself.

After recording this episode, Niki emailed me a lesson she learned from her parents that I think is a perfect endnote to this episode. Niki said that her parents didn’t let her give up on herself. They taught her that it’s okay to fail. But it’s not okay to not try. Always just try and see, and if it doesn’t work out, that’s okay. Failure isn’t bad. But you have to at least try. 

It’s a simple idea. Please take it seriously. 

Niki den Nieuwenboer Bio:

Niki den Nieuwenboer is a professor at the University of Kansas where she researches ethics and workplace deviance. Niki has published research in premier academic journals, and she is also an excellent teacher. Niki teaches business ethics to students at the University of Kansas, as well as to military students who attend the Army’s Command and General Staff College at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas. And I know Niki is an excellent teacher because I once overheard one of her students tell her that her business ethics class was his favorite class, which is no small feat for a business ethics class.

Niki earned a Ph.D. in Management from Erasmus University in the Netherlands, a master’s degree in Applied Ethics from Catholic University of Leuven in Belgium, and a master’s degree in Social and Organizational Psychology from Leiden University in the Netherlands. Niki also speaks several languages, including Dutch, Portuguese, Spanish, and German.

I hope you enjoy learning from Niki den Nieuwenboer today because I always do.

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