The Lovinklaan Foundation – the largest shareholder in Arcadis – is led by employees of Arcadis. The board currently consists of seven Arcadians from different divisions and countries around the globe. They balance their day-to-day workload with their responsibilities for the Foundation; contributing to the continuity of the enterprise and helping Arcadians grow and reach their full potential. In addition to work on Foundation programs and communications by e-mail and multiple Skype calls, the Board meets face-to-face each quarter to discuss developments, make strategic decisions and meet local participants. MO Lai shares his experiences about the board meeting in the Philippines, which took place in January 2018. He acts as board member of the Lovinklaan Foundation and is the Operation Director for Quantity Surveying at Arcadis Hong Kong.
Sharing knowledge and connecting people
MO Lai: “The kick-off of our quarterly meeting was characterised by the warm welcome of the two offices we visited during our stay, including the Arcadis Philippines country office and the GEC located in Manila. It was rewarding and impressive at the same time, especially because we were able to meet such a large number of enthusiastic Arcadians over the course of the week. During the two staff presentations, the attendees were either eager to learn more about the different programs or happy to share their personal Lovinklaan program experiences. It was nice to see how engaged and inspired everyone was by the end of each session.”
Celebrate success and drive sustainable development
“Next to speaking with Arcadians in the different offices, the board also talked a lot about the future direction of the Foundation and which important next steps to take in the future. The visit to the Philippines was different from previous quarterly meetings, mainly because we were invited by Christopher Rollo, the Country Programme Manager of UN Habitat in the Philippines. He expressed how grateful the organization is for our contributions to the Shelter program, a collaboration between UN Habitat, Arcadis, and financially supported by the Lovinklaan Foundation. During this meeting with UN Habitat, they stressed how important it is that we link Arcadians – with the relevant expertise – to different missions in the Philippines. It gave us as a board satisfaction that through our efforts we allow Arcadians to contribute to sustainable development around the globe.’’
Lookback and Outlook
“In Manila, we reflected on past successes, discussed key learnings, and came up with new insights. We spent time to refine our role as the largest shareholder of Arcadis and discussed strategic ways to contribute to the continuity of the enterprise. But, probably as important, we looked at ways to continuously improve the existing range of internationally oriented employee programs, aimed at promoting knowledge exchange, innovation and connecting employees.”