The Interview Blogs highlight the experiences of Global Shapers: Generation 2018, the workflow coaches, executive and senior leadership team members, and a board member from The Lovinklaan Foundation. The #ShareTheStory team interviewed these individuals with specific interview questions geared towards their unique experience during the face-to-face program, October 13 – 17, in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. Today, an interview with Mary-Ann Hopkins, Group Executive of the Americas and CallisonRTKL, and Cécile Cluitmans, Board Member of The Lovinklaan Foundation.
MH: Global Shapers is our future, it’s an opportunity to take ideas from people that are younger in their career and bring them to the broader Arcadis. And it’s often difficult in an organization of our size to get that perspective without a program like Global Shapers
CC: Global Shapers is there for the early career professionals, they are the future of Arcadis, so also there is continuity for the company. It’s really fun to see how much energy there is in the room when you bring so many great young inspiring people together, it’s really awesome.
What is your favorite part about coming to the Global Shapers Face-to-Face program?
MH: Global Shapers is all about getting to meet young professionals at Arcadis. My region is North America, Latin America and Callison RTKL so I don’t have an opportunity to meet people from all the regions of Arcadis. It’s nice where we can bring them all together in one place and find out how much we have in common.
CC: For Lovinklaan, coming here and seeing a seventh program, we are thinking – how can we make this one even better than last year and figure out how to improve next year’s program. It’s nice to grow those people and the program itself.
What are your expectations for Generation 2018?
MH: We always have the same expectations, for Global Shapers we give them a few themes and a couple of ideas and workflows to work on. They’ll come together to solve problems for Arcadis and our clients. But then, more importantly, there will be a ripple effect to this once they leave. It’s inspirational for them to be here but then when they go back into the broader organization they provide that inspiration to the rest of Arcadians.
CC: Global Shapers like you, you are here with 100 people, but you represent much more than just 100 that are selected. There are so many more people that apply, and they represent a bigger group of people. The expectations are also that those people that are in GS go back to their regions, their offices, and bring back to their groups what they’ve learned here and what that means for their own careers, professional developments and personal lives.
How have you seen it transform the business?
CC: Transforming the business is not only done by Global Shapers but several programs and initiatives, including now Expedition DNA, which has really been transforming the business. What Global Shapers really did was give young people a voice and a place at leadership tables, and I think that’s really transformative and very important.
MH: One thing to add about transformation, and how things have changed over seven years. The one think that hasn’t changed is that it’s 100 people a year, now we’ll have 700 people who have gone through this program. I don’t think we actually realize the impact of that within the organization; the network that’s created and the bonds that’s created across the organization. It’s subtle, we don’t actually see it, but I know it’s powerful.
“I don’t think we actually realize the impact of the network that’s created and the bonds that are created across the organization. It’s subtle, we don’t actually see it, but I know it’s powerful.”
CC: I think it’s the total that’s counting, the same for Quest folks which is also about connectivity. Global Shapers is also about connectivity and making sure that we build the strong brand that we have together at Arcadis and that we amplify it. And I think you see the amplification of the program, you can name it ripple effect, but Global Shapers is a brand of its own and there are people entering Arcadis because of Global Shapers. I think in our industry, I cannot mention another company that has something like that, which is so compelling it makes people enter a company.
The Interview Blogs were powered by the #ShareTheStory workflow and the blog interview team, including the Shapers that were virtually present at the f2f program.