In conversation with Dave de Ridder: From Associate Consultant at Progressive to Business Manager at Computer Futures
We had a conversation with our colleague Dave de Ridder who recently transferred from Progressive Recruitment to Computer Futures. We discussed the challenges he sees in his new job, the shifts we see within the brands of SThree, and how colleagues are presented with new opportunities.
How did you find out about SThree?
'I was at a get-together with my sister, where I met Tim Thijsse, Senior Director of SThree. I was still a commercial economics student, not knowing what my next step would be. When we discussed my plans after graduation, Tim mentioned that working at SThree might be an interesting option, as it is a commercial business and would fit in well with my studies. As the conversation progressed, he invited me to the office to discuss the possibilities. A few months later, I started as an Associate Consultant at Progressive Recruitment.
I always had the ambition to go into management, and two years after my journey at Progressive Recruitment started, I became a Senior Consultant. Gradually I started getting more and more teammates around me, and since I was a senior, I got the opportunity to become manager of that team for 3,5 years.
'You recently made a transfer to Computer Futures. Can you tell us more about this?
Last year, I became Senior Manager at Progressive Recruitment. Tim spoke to me about changes taking place at Computer Futures and asked if I’d be interested in a position there. I initially declined because I was very attached to Progressive and the team I single-handedly built there. When it was announced that the Head of Computer Futures and a Senior Manager were stepping down, Tim said that it still might be interesting to have a chat. After all, it would mean that, as Business Manager, I could join Tim in running the whole brand in Amsterdam. Although I found it difficult to leave my team and 7.5 years of history, companionship and hard work behind, I decided to join Computer Futures. At my current position, I direct other managers and help them manage their teams effectively.'
'What do you think about SThree giving you these opportunities?'
'I think it is very that SThree, as an employer, stimulates colleagues to make steps across brands.. Moving up the ladder also means that there is an opportunity for others to grow. My old team also includes colleagues with big management ambitions. This way they may be able to secure a management position in the future. For SThree, it is of course very interesting to offer these kinds of internal opportunities to employees. This way, regardless of what someone’s background is, they get the opportunity to find a new heading in life. In my case, I rolled in gradually because this position came my way by chance. If that hadn't happened, I would still have enjoyed being at Progressive.'
'What experiences will you take with you to Computer Futures?'
'With this new job, I am stepping out of my comfort zone and embarking on a new challenge. While I can't exactly copy-paste 4 years of leadership experience, I have learned a great deal from it and can carry my style of leadership to Computer Futures. Through my work experience within the business, I discovered that I can get colleagues into a certain action mode, so I just keep on doing what I think works.
'Do you have any dreams and/or ambitions beyond your current position?'
'Despite having just started at Computer Futures, I continue to have ambitions. Together with my team, I want to take Computer Futures to the next level. Ultimately, I would like to become a Multiple Brand Director. Maybe that's a step too far for now, but it’s always good to dream beyond.'