Adjusting to the new normal

Who are the people behind Accenture? What drives Marissa Jaggan and inspires her on a daily basis? How has Mark Ruiter's life, career, ambitions, and dreams developed over the years? What difficult choices has Javier Leonor made in his life? Through a series of portraits, we answer these questions and introduce you to our people: those who make Accenture the thriving company that it is.

Introducing Rinco Buist, Senior Manager Salesforce Business Group at Accenture

It’s no easy feat to successfully juggle all the balls that come with having a demanding job, a wife whose schedule is equally busy and two young children. Fortunately, Rinco Buist is naturally a gifted “arranger” – as the StrengthsFinder test also confirmed – who enjoys the challenge of balancing many duties. This ability, coupled with four separate calendars, helps to make sure the family’s lives run smoothly. 

‘I recently turned 40. While turning 30 was a big deal for me – I hated it, to be honest – reaching this new milestone was a far less stressful experience. That’s because I am very happy with my life as it is right now. In contrast, when I turned 30, I dreaded the idea that I had to start making all these “adult” decisions – to settle down and secure a decent job, for instance. Originally, I had planned to celebrate my 40th birthday by hosting a full-on 20-course dinner with 25 of my closest friends and family, but coronavirus ruined the party. Instead, I received an edited video – courtesy of my dad – in which all guests shared an anecdote or memory that featured me. My wife even made a scrapbook with pictures and stories. Listening to all of these people talking about me and taking a trip down memory lane through the scrapbook was a moving experience. As I’m the sort of person who deeply cherishes personal connections with friends and family, this was by far the best present they could have given me.’ 

Teaching my daughter to read and write

‘The past few months have been an interesting ride, to say the least. Obviously, it took some time to adjust to the many changes brought on by coronavirus – we went from living very busy lives to suddenly finding ourselves at home constantly and dealing with quite a bit of uncertainty. I missed being around other people and found myself taking long walks every night, just to get out of the house. My wife works in a hospital, so our two children – Esmée and Lucièn – were allowed to attend school, but for everyone’s safety, we chose not to send them. I loved being around my children more and felt fortunate to be the one teaching Esmée to write and read. That said, getting a decent amount of my own work done during this time proved pretty much impossible. When I raised my concerns with my career counselor, he suggested that I take part-time care leave on the days I was at home with Lucièn and Esmée. That took a huge weight off my shoulders, for which I am very grateful. Gradually, we adjusted to the “new normal”, and everything started to run smoothly. Corona has definitely brought us closer together as a family and made me value everything we have even more than I did before.’ 

‘It wasn’t just my family that had to get used to the new normal; we had to do the same at Accenture. As we’re a global technology firm, video calls and remote work certainly weren’t new to us. Yet it was still amazing to see how quickly we adapted to all the change. In fact, this crisis has actually made the company stronger. In a recent webcast, our CEO, Julie Sweet, applauded the fact that Accenture – a company that employs half a million people around the globe – has managed to weather the storm so successfully so far. That made me extremely proud. I love working for a company that has the mindset and tools to adjust quickly to a challenge like this, and that embraces the opportunity to turn a struggle into something positive. My team decided to capitalize on some of the extra time we had to voluntarily implement Salesforce at a Dutch charity that helps African women escape poverty. I find it both rewarding and meaningful to give back to society through my work, and I’m glad I work for a business that considers this important too.’ 

A constant flow of new ideas

‘Earlier on in my career, I was definitely what people would call a “job hopper”. It’s fairly typical of me to get a little restless once I know how something works and it’s just a matter of copy-and-paste. I want to be constantly learning new things, meeting new people and developing myself further. That’s why back in 2010, after three years at Accenture, I decided to leave for a job at Capgemini. I don’t regret my decision to move, in fact, I am still grateful for all the opportunities that were given to me, but when I was offered the chance to return to Accenture in 2015, I didn’t have to think long or hard about whether to accept. It really felt like I was coming home. The company’s driven culture and the energy and eagerness of its employees really resonate with my personality. Everybody is filled with new ideas and is constantly on the hunt for new opportunities. I love how this company proactively stimulates idea generation and offers us the time and tools to see if a concept is actually feasible. Above all else, I enjoy working with so many young, talented, and passionate people.’  

‘Salesforce is a platform that offers clients numerous solutions. Part of its great appeal is that it keeps evolving through the continuous implementation of new ideas and smart innovations. Essentially, Salesforce helps me to make clients and people successful. In this way, my job shares many qualities with entrepreneurship: we sell clients a solution to their problem(s). My entrepreneurial mindset stems from my father, who started his own business as an advisor for confectionaries after he lost his job at the age of 40. I loved joining him at events and trade fairs to showcase and sell his ideas, and help grow his business. He invented a technique for pastry chefs to place images on cakes, which made him very successful. He retired last year and always secretly hoped I would take over his business, but it’s just not a desire of mine. That said, I am grateful to have a job that taps into the entrepreneurial part of my personality, too.’ 

"I love how this company proactively stimulates idea generation and offers us the time and tools to see if a concept is actually feasible."

Listening to my body’s signals

‘The further you advance in your career, the more responsibilities you have to take on. Obviously, the goal is to climb and grow, but it can also put extra strain on you. Every now and then, I lie awake at night, worrying about whether something will work out the way I envision. Over time I have learned to listen to my body’s signals and make sure I maintain a healthy work-life balance. If stress gets the better of me, I go out for a long run or walk in nature. Running a household with two young kids while having demanding jobs can be challenging, especially considering that my wife sometimes works night shifts and I occasionally have to take calls at night or on weekends. Making it work requires a love for coordinating things, an affinity for the art of juggling and four different calendars, but ultimately we succeed!’  

What I do

I use my experience to help make clients successful, by, for instance, boosting their revenue, lowering their overheads, improving delivery times, or facilitating personal growth. 

A day in my life

The average day always entails making things work or figuring out new ways to make things work. This is what I love doing most and, therefore, it’s where I excel. 

Advice to fellow and future colleagues

Don’t sit and wait until somebody else asks you what you’d like to do; rather, lay your own path. Think about what you enjoy doing and what you deem important, and try to incorporate those things into your daily job – if you succeed, you’ll enjoy your work for a long time to come.

Rinco Buist (1980)

Studied: BA Business Informatics, Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences (2004)

Started working at Accenture: April 2015 (with a previous stint at the company from 2007 to 2010)

Relationship status: Married to Renée, father to Esmée (6) and Lucièn (5)  

Loves: Good food and spending quality time with family and friends

Gets annoyed by: Pessimists 

Favorite food: I enjoy the full fine-dining experience, which is as much about getting dressed up, sitting around the table for hours and tasting new flavors as it is about the food itself

On my nightstand: My alarm clock, a lamp and a (management) book, which will probably take me between six months and a year to read, as is normal for me 

Listens to: When I run I listen to Armin van Buuren, who I’m a big fan of. But these days, I am more drawn to the piano music in Spotify’s “Maximum Concentration” playlist

Last purchase: A Dyson air purifier to help with my pollen allergy. I bought two, in fact: one for the bedroom and one for the living room 

Would like to sit next to in the plane: Yuval Noah Harari, an Israeli historian and author of the eye-opening book "Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind", which was given to me by a good friend and colleague

Life-changing event: The birth of my two children

The best lesson life has taught me: Don’t sit and dream about the things you want for too long; sometimes it’s better to just go out there and make them happen

What I learned recently: Stephen Covey’s “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” book really changed my outlook on life. It taught me the importance of focusing on the matters you can influence, rather than on those you can’t control 

Most beautiful place on earth: Argentina, especially the Iguazu falls and Salta in the northern part of the country

Hobbies/passions: Running and traveling 

What nobody knows about me: That I have a thyroid disorder for which I have to take medication every day. If I forget to take my pills, I get significant mood swings

Life motto: Maak er wat van, als je ontevreden bent, nou doe daar dan wat aan’ – from a song from “Sesame Street”: Bert and Ernie, which roughly translates to ‘Enjoy what you do, and if you don’t, be sure to change it’. 

  • Meet the Salesforce team!

    Rinze Rijkmans, Salesforce Consultant at Accenture

    "Now that he works with Salesforce, he’s convinced this is the 'place to be'."


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