Profiles

Crystal Vision

An interview with Diana Langes-Swarovski

Entrepreneur. Philanthropist. Mother. Traveler. As a fifth-generation member of one of the world’s most celebrated crystal dynasties, Diana Langes-Swarovski’s many roles keep her days full. The Austrian-born multihyphenate’s vigor reflects the long line of passionate, innovative people who came before her: from her great-great-grandfather Daniel Swarovski to her equally prolific father, Gernot Langes-Swarovski, each of whom was known as the King of Crystals in his time, and who famously propelled the Swarovski brand into the powerhouse it is today.

Langes-Swarovski has known about the special bond Bombardier has had with her family business for years. As a child, she remembers how then-Bombardier CEO, Laurent Beaudoin, personally delivered a Global Express to her father. The memory left a lasting impression on Langes-Swarovski who ended up following in her father’s legacy by taking over the reins of Tyrolean Jet Services, a business jet company he co-founded.

Diana Langes-Swarovski
Diana Langes-Swarovski, President of Wattener Sportgemeinschaft

Rather than resting on her ancestral laurels, however, Langes-Swarovski found a way to blaze her own fierce path, one that seeks a deeper purpose in both business and pleasure. Which is probably why Langes- Swarovski’s long list of ventures continue to flourish and evolve. Take, for instance, her role as President of Wattener Sportgemeinschaft Tirol—the professional football club from the Tyrolean town of Wattens located near her home in the Austrian Alps. Or her buffalo farm in Venezuela, the meticulously run vineyard she’s currently developing or her inspired line of Real Fanatic fragrances—appropriately named for Langes-Swarovski’s devotion to sports.

While juggling so many projects, Langes-Swarovski has had her share of trial and error, which has played a part in guiding her to where and who she is today. As someone who believes women helping women is paramount to progress, Langes-Swarovski graciously shares five valuable life lessons with Experience magazine, in conversation with Ève Laurier, Vice President, Communications, Marketing and Public Affairs at Bombardier.

Words To Live By:

Best person to take advice from? You.

“Take the time to know yourself before you try to speed ahead. Women have the advantage of ‘fine tuning’—we can access our emotions with ease and have the innate ability to touch on the sentimental aspects of our life. This is the key to success.”

Cherish every minute of family time.

In response to the question, “If you could take anyone with you on a plane, to anywhere, who would you take?”, Langes-Swarovski answers without hesitation: the legendary Gernot Langes-Swarovski, who sadly passed away two years ago. “My father,” she says with a tone that articulates a mix of reverence, grief and love, “I would want to be with my father. I still have so much to ask him, to learn from him. The destination does not matter. Any extra moment with him would be invaluable.”

Time has no price tag.

“I’m not beyond traveling commercially if there is a direct connection, and I don’t mind doing so in Economy Class,” she says. “If this is not an option, I’m glad to have the opportunity to travel privately—to get from A to B and back within 24 hours so I can be home quickly and efficiently,” she says, noting that the importance of being there for friends and family eclipses any business transaction. “Time is so valuable.”

Play by your own rules and win.

“Women have always proven to be amazing multitaskers,” she says, noting that we all need to look to the countless female-driven accomplishments around us as guides. “We can do so much, but we should not try to copy the only model of leadership we had for so many years—which really is the male model. So, women: Stay connected to your heart, to your values and to yourselves.”

Choose lifelines over deadlines.

“I have not given myself a determined time or a milestone to achieve that would give me the feeling that I am done or that I can rest. It feels like there’s always so much to build, to create, to share and to learn, and for me to be able to get the energy to keep that mindset, all I need is the seascape, nature and time for gratitude.”

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