We talked with Mickaël Goudmaeker about his evolution and the key factors that led him to become a Business Director at Evertys.
How would you summarize your career journey leading to your role as a business director?
I began my journey at the bottom of the ladder, branching out into new horizons by working hard to develop myself for careers where I didn't have the academic qualifications. At the time, I didn't know it, but all those diverse experiences were equipping me with the essential skills to excel in my future leadership roles.
I had the privilege of joining Sisu: Group (via Strand Associates at the time), where I started as a Business Manager and progressed to more significant and strategic roles thanks to tangible successes. It's a role that demands continuous learning and adaptation, and it's one that I find incredibly rewarding. My journey to becoming a business director has been shaped by a commitment to learning, adaptability, and a passion for leadership.
What factors or experiences led you to choose a career in business?
First and foremost, I have always been fascinated by the dynamism and complexity of the business world. The idea of creating, innovating, and solving real-world problems through business strategies was deeply appealing to me.
Additionally, my early exposure to entrepreneurial close members instilled in me a strong work ethic and an appreciation for the value of entrepreneurship. This exposure played a significant role in shaping my career aspirations.
How do you think others can identify their own motivations and paths?
I would offer the following advice:
- Self-reflection: take time to reflect on your interests, strengths, and values. Consider what activities and challenges truly excite you and where your skills align.
- Continuous learning: Keep an open mind and be willing to learn from every experience. Sometimes, you may discover your true passions through unexpected opportunities.
- Networking: Engage with professionals in your areas of interest. Building a network of mentors and peers can provide valuable insights and guidance.
- Trial and error: Don't be afraid to experiment with different roles and industries. Trial and error can be a powerful tool in discovering what truly resonates with you.
Can you provide additional advice on effective networking and building valuable professional relationships, especially for students just starting their careers?
Networking is crucial, especially for our business. Attend market fairs, trainings, workshops, events, engage with professionals in your field, and be proactive in seeking mentorship. Building relationships takes time, but they can be a key to future opportunities and growth.
For me, networking is also a passion. In fact, I'm known within the group as the person who knows someone almost everywhere or that can easily find a contact for someone. It takes time to build, but it's an investment that pays off in the long term and in many cases.
Which skills and experiences have played a crucial role in your career progression?
Emotional intelligence and empathy have been pivotal skills in my career. They enable a better understanding of colleagues, clients, and market dynamics.
I think that listening actively, being open to other's perspectives, and enhancing your self-awareness are key to develop these skills. Incorporating them will not only advance one's career but also foster more effective and harmonious professional relationships.
You are currently leading a team of 9 people. What strategies do you use for effective team communication/motivation and for fostering a positive work culture?
- Open communication
- Recognizing achievements
- Fostering an environment where ideas are valued
I think these three strategies can benefit professionals in diverse leadership roles.
Could you share a significant moment that reinforced your commitment to this field?
I successfully built a team to tackle a growth ambition with a new division. The project required collaboration across various departments and the development of groundbreaking solutions for our long-term ambition.
Witnessing the team's dedication, creativity, and ultimately the positive impact our efforts had on the organization was a defining moment for me. It reinforced my belief in the power of effective leadership and the potential for business to drive positive change.
What are your long-term career aspirations and where do you see your professional future heading?
My career aspirations revolve around continued growth, both personally and professionally. I aim to further develop my leadership skills and contribute to the sustained success of Evertys & Prosource.
Additionally, I have a strong interest in mentoring and guiding client’s companies and emerging professionals to help them achieve their career goals. Looking ahead, I see myself taking on more substantial leadership roles, and continuing to make a positive impact in the business world.
Mickaël Goudmaeker's story exemplifies the potential of a career driven by passion and resilience.
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