You’re encouraged to go for it — no straitjackets

Robbert Mol

Supply chain analyst
Euro Pool System
The Netherlands

Incredible! That was my first impression of Euro Pool System. I’ve got a master’s in supply chain management and this is my first real job. Everything about the place suggests a company that’s growing rapidly. Change is always in the air, and no two days are the same.

I’m working on a number of innovative projects aimed at improving our business — fascinating stuff. It’ll sound pretty straightforward if I try to summarise what we do, but it’s actually quite complex. Some of that has to do with serving all of Europe. Trays used in Germany might have come from Spain. Truth be told, you’re dealing with one of Europe’s largest supply chains. It’s amazing.

I’m currently focussed on Germany, where we’re working on an innovation called Smart Return Logistics. I think it’s amazing that I get to work on and help implement something like this in my very first year. But that’s due to the culture. If you see something you’d like to work on, you’re encouraged to just go for it — no straitjackets. I think this has something to do with being a relatively small company, and one that’s still growing. Hence the unconventional way of thinking with which people approach things. This freedom we’re given to take the initiative really suits me.

One of the most interesting parts of my job is discussing ideas with colleagues, from this and other regions, while trying to work out common solutions. You really see the benefits of collaboration when you do that. And the ability to critically assess each other’s ideas seems baked into everyone’s DNA. Even after a project’s been completed, it’s not unusual for one of us to cast another eye over it. Not to point fingers or anything; merely to help each learn, and keep learning. That keeps you sharp.

The trays themselves embody something I find important. The company’s seriousness about sustainability was one of the reasons I took the job. You have to do your bit for the environment. Figuring out how to become even more sustainable is a fascinating challenge. But that’s what we’ll keep doing.