Michaela Merk's story begins in Munich, where creativity and competition go hand in hand. Her mother, an art teacher, filled their home with creativity, while her father, a bank manager and athlete, instilled in her a relentless pursuit of excellence.

She grew up with the motto "In life, you have to measure yourself, compete, know where you stand and push your limits", which has driven her to this day to constantly strive for excellence.

These early influences have shaped Michaela's understanding of beauty, leadership and emotional intelligence, laying the foundations for her journey into luxury leadership.


For five years, Michaela immersed herself in the study of business in Asia, exploring Singapore, Malaysia and Indonesia. Her encounters with exceptional people guided her fledgling career, giving her an ambitious mindset.

However, 1997 marked a turning point. Known as the 'Great Bubble', an economic crisis swept through South East Asia. Michaela had secured a position with Nestlé in Singapore, but the company froze recruitment in response to the uncertainty, and her opportunity vanished.

This setback was a disappointment, but it also strengthened Michaela's resolve. She saw it as an opportunity to forge a new path, one that would lead to an extraordinary career in luxury leadership and customer experience. Her time in Asia became a seminal chapter, teaching her lessons in resilience and adaptability that continue to shape her work.


After the Singapore experience, Michaela's curiosity led her to Paris. A weekend visit turned into a love affair with the city, and she decided to pursue the MiM (Master in Management) at ESSEC in 1998.

Her career in luxury began at L'Oréal Luxe, where she found a perfect blend of creativity and excellence. For six years she worked as Brand and Travel Retail Director for Helena Rubinstein, followed by three years at Marionnaud as International Marketing Director for luxury brands.

Paris not only shaped Michaela's career, but also opened her eyes to the fascinating world of luxury. Her time in the city became a transformative chapter, aligning her values with an industry that nurtures creativity and encourages the pursuit of excellence.


After leaving Paris and spending two years with Estée Lauder in Munich, Michaela suffered a professional setback in 2010 due to the economic crisis. But her resilience led her to chart her own course.

With a passion for luxury and a philanthropic spirit, she founded Merk Vision, a company specialising in the luxury industry. From luxury leader to international speaker and executive coach, she has delivered speeches for prestigious brands such as Hermès, Louis Vuitton, Dior, Chanel, Four Seasons, Rolex, La Prairie, etc.

Despite the challenges, Michaela's authenticity and dedication have enabled her to make a significant contribution to the luxury industry, inspiring and guiding others on their professional journeys.


After gaining practical experience, Michaela deepened her understanding of the luxury industry by studying for a PhD in Marketing. This academic pursuit led her to become a Professor of Luxury Marketing and Sustainable Luxury at prestigious institutions such as University of St. Gallen and Dauphine, Sciences Po Paris and currently Audencia Business School.

In 2014, she wrote the book "Luxury Sales Force Management", which has sold over 100,000 copies, and has extended her influence through media appearances and contributions to discussions on platforms such as Forbes, Financial Times, France 2, Radio France, and TEDx.

An active member of associations such as the National Speakers Association (NSA), the Association Progrès du Management (APM) and the Association Française des Conférenciers Professionnels (AFCP), Michaela supports and coaches future speakers and managers. Her podcast Luxury Leadership Talks is a testament to her commitment to enriching the luxury industry and all who want to learn from its secrets by inviting accomplished leaders into intimate discussions about success.


Michaela's love of travel is more than just a hobby; it's a source of inspiration and personal fulfilment. Her explorations have taken her to over 100 breathtaking destinations around the world, from high expeditions in the Himalayan mountains to dog sliding in Mongolia, and visiting numerous historical tribes, such as the Maasai in Kenya.

Each trip is an extreme experience, a culture shock that fuels her creativity and enriches her lectures and teaching. Whether gliding silently over the prairie in a hot air balloon or witnessing a daring crossing of the Mara River, Michaela finds leadership lessons in the most unexpected places.

Her travels are a blend of luxury and adventure, which mark her for life and become stories that she shares with her clients, students and audiences. It is through these experiences that Michaela connects her love of nature, her pursuit of excellence and her knowledge of leadership and emotional intelligence.


Throughout her expeditions from early childhood, Michaela encountered captivating individuals, such as Dr. Jane Goodall, whose influence profoundly shaped her vision and convictions. Observing Goodall in Tanzania, Michaela gleaned valuable lessons on the significance of safeguarding our planet by fostering interconnected relationships among nature, animals, and humanity.

But also in her professional career Michaela learned from the best. Among her coaches in public speaking are world champion speakers like Darren La Croix and Marc Brown or Simon Sinek's coach Mark Levy .

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