Cathrine Nagell in front of a book shelf

Consultant portrait: Cathrine Nagell

From experienced CEO to preferred business consultant

After 26 years of permanent employment, Norwegian Cathrine Nagell wanted to try her hand as a consultant. It was the start of a new career as a business consultant, advisor and project manager. And ProData Consult has mediated many of her assignments.

Cathrine Nagell has a law degree from the University of Oslo. She has 26 years of management experience dealing with intellectual property rights issues in a rights management company. Skills which are in high demand by the various clients she now helps as a consultant.

Implementation of processes necessary to comply with the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) is perfect for someone with Cathrine Nagell’s background. Ever since she began her career as a consultant in 2018, the consulting projects have mainly focused on this area.

Wanted change after 26 years

However, before embarking on a career as a consultant, Cathrine Nagell held a job, which in her own words, “was more typical for a lawyer.”

– For many years, I worked with intellectual property rights issues for the media industry and management in Norwaco, before I ended up taking over as CEO of that same company, she says. In total, I spent more than 26 years in the media rights industry.

Norwaco is a Norwegian copyright organisation for rights holders with 36 member organisations consisting of more than 65,000 individual rights holders within audiovisual works.

– At one point, I told myself that I had become an experienced lady, and it was time to find a new career path now that I was all grown up, she says jokingly.

Cathrine Nagell already knew that the consultant role was well aligned with her needs, as the fundamentals of the role centered on being an advisor, a problem solver, and never giving up.

– Being a problem-solver was precisely the kind of challenge that had driven me for 11 years as director. Legal compliance is often lagging behind the business, and there are always obstacles to overcome. At the same time, I had the desire and courage to get to know a new field before I got too old, she says.

The spark that set off a career in consulting

By the time Cathrine Nagell started in the consulting industry in 2018, European authorities and companies were already well on their way to introducing GDPR. These days many companies work hard to protect individuals and their personal information while adhering to the latest regulations. It was an area Cathrine was intrigued by and wanted to work within:

– At that time, I had no experience with compliance and GDPR projects. Still, I thought quite the opposite. I was convinced that with a legal background and vast experience as a CEO, I would be the perfect fit as an interim manager, project manager or similar, she says.

And with that as a starting point, Cathrine Nagell started a dialogue with several different consulting companies about assignments. At ProData Consult, she received good feedback that her skills and experiences matched the right project at an established telecom company.

{   ... ProData Consult is unique when it comes to matching my skills and experience with the right projects. They have been excellent all the way ...   }

Business consultant Cathrine Nagell

Cathrine Nagell's legal background and vast experience as the leader of a complex organization proved to work well to succeed as a consultant.

Role of sparring partner and advisor

In the assignments with one of Norway’s largest telecom companies, she was responsible for the project «GDPR 2.0». As the title of the project suggests, the company had previously implemented a GDPR strategy. And the company initiated the project to strengthen the company’s processes and handling of the GDPR legislation.

She describes the tasks at the telecom company as a form of sparring partner.

– It was very much about acting as an advisor and delivering solution proposals. In that sense, we could jointly ensure that the company had privacy requirements adhering to GDPR. Our goal was to build a structure to make it easier to work with privacy in the future, says the experienced lawyer.

– If we look at the GDPR issue, it is essentially a matter of identifying how to use personal data in a business context within certain limits, instead of exclusively responding with an attitude that says “No, we cannot”, she explains.

Cathrine Nagell sits in a comfy pink chair

The experienced manager has been allowed to work independently with consulting tasks, and she enjoys it.

Thrives on responsibility and freedom

Cathrine Nagell emphasises that she enjoys the freedom that comes with helping different clients with their projects.

– It allowed me to work very independently, and I was incredibly grateful for that. I report directly to the company’s legal director and fortunately have easy access to feedback. In the advisor role, she remarks, I can essentially draw on my background, both as a manager and a lawyer.

In addition to her projects for the telecom company, she also served as a contact point between the company and the Data Protection Authority in Norway. Here Cathrine followed and reported on developments within the GDPR domain both nationally and internationally.

Better equipped for new projects

When her current contract expires, Cathrine Nagell looks forward to undertaking new assignments as a business consultant and project manager. She sees herself in the consultant role as a business professional who can contribute with an extensive legal background, coupled with a well-developed business and management understanding that she has gained through many years of professional experience at a high level.

Cathrine Nagell has recently strengthened her competencies within Change Management, adding to her PRINCE2 and ScrumMaster certifications. Essentially, optimizing her profile to make herself even more relevant for new assignments.

ProData Consult collaborates with consultancies

ProData Consult works with freelancers, as well as many consulting companies as subcontractors to find the right experts for the job.

The collaboration with consulting partners means that in-demand consultants can access freelance assignments via ProData Consult extensive network of international clients.

Do you want access to new consulting assignments?
Remember to register your consultant profile with Prodata Consult.

Portrait Cathrine Nagell


Cathrine Nagell

Norwegian Cathrine Nagell has a law degree from UiO and many years of experience as a lawyer and CEO of the rights organisation Norwaco. The legal background is instrumental as a business consultant and project manager.

ProData Consult mediates several of her consulting assignments via the subcontractor Vilje Prosjekttjenester AS, where she holds a position as Senior Managing Consultant.