Helping Others Ideology
Who are the people behind Accenture? What drives Hester Prins and inspires her on a daily basis? How has William de Waard's life, career, ambitions and dreams developed over the years? What difficult choices has Melissa Cheung made in her 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 Martine Verloop, Account Delivery Lead at Accenture Netherlands.
You can recognize her by her pink gadgets, stylish hairdo, Star Wars and Star Trek fascination and infectious laugh. And don’t forget the always on-hand espresso. Account Delivery Lead Martine Verloop-Barendregt calls herself an “atypical” employee, but still feels incredibly at home at Accenture.
‘I am an incredibly loyal person. Although, that could also translate to ‘boring’, which I often call myself, too. I have been married to my greatest love Rob, for 34 years (after falling in love with him when I was 15), I have lived in Dordrecht my whole life and I have had the same friends for over three decades. Had it not been for a transfer to Accenture via an outsourcing deal with a large consumer goods company in 2006, I probably would still be working for the same company. At the time I was transferred I was two months short of my 25th anniversary at that company. I’ll be honest: I cried for two days when I heard I was being transferred.’
‘Of course, had I known what a blessing moving to Accenture would be back then, I probably would not have shed a tear. I would have never been able to achieve at my previous employer what I have achieved at Accenture. To be frank: I’m not your typical Accenture employee. I don’t have an academic background; I’m a so-called “Schoevers-meisje”. Of course, I have done numerous training and study programmes in my time, but, in that sense, I am definitely noticeable at Accenture Technology. I am fascinated by Star Trek and Star Wars: there’s a Yoda figurine on my desk, and I have various Star Wars key chains. Also, I totally love the color pink: my phone, iPad, mouse, power bank - they’re all pink. Then there is the fact that I recently turned 54, while most of my colleagues are much younger. From time to time, people have told me I’m “the odd one out”; although, I have never perceived that as a negative, nor did they mean it that way.’
It All Comes Down to People
‘I am extremely happy working at Accenture, mostly because of the people I get to collaborate with. Ultimately, for me it all comes down to people. There is nothing more important to me than working with great, driven, passionate and intelligent people who also have a sense of humor. For the past four years, I have been working as Account Delivery Lead in Zeeland, where I have the privilege of working with a great team who tick all the right boxes.’
‘When I was asked to take on this project in Zeeland, it was a no-brainer. I have been visiting Zeeland since I was a baby. After Dordrecht, it’s the place in the Netherlands I love the most. I thoroughly enjoy being at the beach, close to the sea and the fresh air. However, nothing beats good old “Dordt”. It’s basically a city that doubles up as an island. As the oldest city in Holland (not to be confused with the Netherlands), this is where it all started. It’s a fantastic city with its great port and, of course, the beautiful Biesbosch. Few things make me as happy as touring in my cabrio around the Biesbosch. Our wedding pictures were taken at the Groothoofd, the iconic, historical place in Dordrecht where three different rivers meet. Rob, my husband, was born and bred in Dordrecht, too. If I had to think of another place where I could picture us living it would probably be Zeeland, but in all fairness, I don’t ever see us leaving Dordrecht.’
My Buddy and Number One Go-To Person
‘My dad also loved Dordrecht deeply. He passed away seven years ago, and not a day goes by that I don’t think about him. He was my buddy, my number one go-to person who always had my back. Of course, Rob fills that roles as well, but the bond between my dad and I was precious and powerful. Despite not liking museums at all, my dad would go to each and every museum in this country, just because I asked him to. He was the person I would call when I was traveling, and would visit as soon as I had come home - sometimes I would pop in for ten minutes, just to say hi to him. His death was very sudden; I was totally unprepared. I know he would be very proud of me if he saw me today.’
‘In all honesty, I’m also quite proud of where I am today. After all, I started as an office manager and rose in the ranks to where I am today. That’s one of the things I love about Accenture: the company offers you endless possibilities, but it’s up to you to take the initiative to make the most of them. If you bring an idea to the table, they’ll do their best to facilitate its execution. It was a learning process for me, but amongst many things, Accenture has definitely taught me to stand up for myself and what I want.’
1 + 1 = 3
‘Again, it’s the people who define the success. I am a firm believer of Gestalt therapy: 1 and 1 doesn’t add up to 2, but 3, instead. Helping people around you become more successful, contributes to your personal success, too. No matter where I go or which desk I sit at, I always carry a big, cardboard smiley with me that says: ‘You’ll never become number one on your own’. I truly believe that everybody is part of the bigger picture, and that you can only genuinely make things happen as a team.’
‘The same goes for everything I do outside of work. I love being part of a community and proactively contribute to it. For instance, when Rob and I started playing tennis years ago, it took six months before I joined the activity committee of the tennis club, and within a year, I was on the board and running six other committees. Similarly, at Accenture, I was a member of the Works Council, member of the Inclusion & Diversity team and I currently am the Communications Lead for Technology Netherlands and one of the Engagement Leads. I believe I was given a few talents in life and that it’s important to use your talents to help other people. I firmly believe people are in this world to help one another.’
"I firmly believe people are in this world to help one another."
Helping Others Ideology
‘Helping other people is a value that was instilled during my early days. My parents have always been very socially aware, they worked on everything from aid programmes for Romania to local projects in Dordrecht, such as an initiative that helped homeless and lonely people enjoy a nice, warm Christmas meal. So, the “helping others” ideology has been with me for quite some years. It just gives me a great feeling of satisfaction to help other people, both in my work as well as in my personal life. In addition, I learn from each and every person I meet, no matter how much they differ from me. It’s not only my life motto, but also one of my greatest wishes: to keep learning from other people, every day.’
Martine Verloop-Barendregt (1963)
Studied: Office Management, Schoevers College (1983)
Started working at Accenture: July 2006
Relationship status: Married to Rob
Loves: My husband Rob, our “hairy kid” aka cat, Beau, and close family and friends
Gets annoyed by: Injustice, manipulative behavior
Favorite food: Rob’s homemade tomato soup
On my nightstand: Reading glasses, alarm clock and a book
Listens to: Depends on my mood, but can be anything varying from Simply Red, Blof, Enrique Iglesias, Armin van Buuren to opera
Last purchase: Flight tickets to Ireland to drive the Ring of Kerry
Would like to sit next to in the plane: the Dalai Lama
Life-changing event: My dad’s passing in September 2010
The best lesson life has taught me: You don’t have to be afraid of anything; in the end, it will all work out. And if it doesn’t, it’s meant to be - which is also fine
What I learned last week: That, sometimes, the best way to inspire creativity and be able to come up with solutions is to withdraw for a while and let the mind rest
Most beautiful place on earth: Santorini and Dordrecht
Hobbies/passions: Traveling, reading, yoga and spending quality time with Rob and friends
What nobody knows about me: Not much, I am an open book
Life motto: Live and let live. Do whatever makes you happy, as long as you don’t hurt others or yourself
- Would you be confident enough in your knowledge to advise a company to follow a full digital transformation? Maybe Strategy & Consulting could be a good fit for you
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