Ilse Marsman, who graduated in International Business at the FEB, is now senior consultant at Essent. Very much to mutual satisfaction, her company nominated her for the national Young Professional of the Year Award 2012. What are Ilse’s ambitions and how useful was her FEB education?
“What? You chose a utilities company?” That was the most prominent reaction when I told people in my environment, says Ilse. I had decided to start working for an energy company back in 2008. Boring, that was the prejudice. To be honest, I myself didn’t expect that I would choose a former state owned company. When I was studying I had the more ‘sexy and exciting’ companies as Unilever or Heineken in mind. However, the career possibilities and the company culture of Essent attracted my attention. Once I got in, I was sold...
That was four years ago. I successfully accomplished the Management Traineeship in 2012 and I am currently working as Senior Consultant for our international, in-house consulting department. Additionally, I have been nominated by Essent for the Young Professional of the Year Award 2012.
Since then, I have really benefited from my international study background. Although Germany is one of our neighbouring countries there are many differences in doing business together. I wrote my master thesis about ‘national diversity’ within European Top Management Teams. In the light of this it is interesting to see what happens within a company when a board changes from fully Dutch to 50% international, now having two non-natives (one Belgian, one British) in a Board out of four people.
Many Essent colleagues thought of the integration as a threat in the beginning. I immediately saw it as an opportunity. For Essent as a company, but also for myself as a Young Professional with a corresponding study background. It was therefore pretty clear for me that I wanted to work for our international consulting department after the Management Traineeship. Energy affairs are simply international. The climate problem doesn’t stop at the Dutch border and also the commercial challenges are comparable for the different Operational Companies within RWE.
I am currently active in the Business-to-Consumer department in the Netherlands. My biggest challenge is to start thinking from the customer’s perspective. That sounds pretty logical in 2012; but believe me – that’s quite a change for a company that was still thinking in terms of connections instead of customers not that long ago.
I try to distinguish myself within Essent by setting ambitious goals (dream big), that I try to reach with a down-to-earth, can-do mentality (act big). It’s an honour to represent Essent within the national Young Professional of the Year competition. I face competition of nineteen from other major Dutch companies. In the past two months I have done my upmost best to convince the jury of my qualities. I gave pitches, researched the partnerships of Essent with NGO’s and I wrote a business case in just five hours.
Now, a public vote is being held to help determine the winner of the award.You can vote here (Poll on the right side of the page)
Contact Ilse Marsman via Twitter (@IlseMarsman) or LinkedIn.
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