You have to try everything at least once in your life
My name is Stanley. I’m in my early sixties and I was born and bred in Utrecht. I’ve lived with my wife Karin in the well-known cheese town of Woerden for the past 30 years. It’s a great place to live, in the middle of the green belt and close to Utrecht and Amsterdam. We’re the proud parents of Malou and Simon, who now live in Amsterdam and are both doing well there I’m happy to say.
A motto? I don’t really have a personal motto, or maybe I do… “You have to try everything at least once in your life”. I’m not a fussy eater and I like almost everything. But if I had to choose, my favorite would be Surinam food, such as roti with chicken. And if there’s one thing you could wake me up at night for, it’s Surinam ‘pom’. That’s because my mother was from Surinam, and there isn’t a restaurant on the planet that can make pom like she did. If I’m ever allowed to give out Michelin stars posthumously, then I know who’s going to get them.
After high school, I studied organic chemistry. At the time, it was called studying at the Higher Laboratory School. I got interested in IT quite soon after my studies. I started as a programmer, but now when I look at the computer screens of our developers I can see that IT has evolved in unimaginable ways.
After quite a few twists and turns I found my niche in Customer Services, mainly for international software companies. This is where my passion lies. It gives me a great feeling when I can turn angry customers with insurmountable problems into satisfied customers. I worked the longest – more than 10 years – as Customer Support Manager for Cognos, a Canadian supplier of Business Intelligence tools. At Cognos, I was responsible for a support team that provided technical product support in Dutch, English, German and Swedish.
Working with vision on a really great product
I’ve been a full-time entrepreneur for 15 years and in the last 3 years my business partner and I developed a web platform that’s now operational. But just as with normal marriages, business partners also grow apart. Since January of this year, I’ve been working 4 days a week at ValueBlue and I spend the rest of the time working in my own business.
ValueBlue is a great company to work for; a no-nonsense club in which your work requires you to be imaginative. You can take your own initiative and be proactive. Every day I enjoy experiencing all the passion and drive of the people around me. With lots of younger colleagues – although that’s not difficult in my case 😊 – who are working with vision on a really great product.
What I personally think is great about the growth we’re undergoing is that it gives me more space to do something with my experience and ideas in the field of customer support. Because let’s be honest, if you’ve purchased a state-of-the-art product you also expect state-of-the-art support when you need it.
When I see how we’re currently making progress in every area and what our concrete plans for further professionalizing the product – with an even better user interface and fantastic new features on the way – I have no doubt that within 3 to 5 years we’ll be a force to be reckoned with on the international market.