What are the challenges to work in an international work environment? Additionally, what are the benefits to work with people from all over the world? What is it like to work in a professional field, such as international business? Those were the questions that I asked myself, since I will start my internship in an international company called Management Events in Helsinki. Thus, to get answers to my questions and learn more about this field and the working environment, I decided to interview my future employer Wouter Goedkoop.
Wouter Goedkoop is currently a Dutch team leader delegate operations service center and project manager for Management Events. At first, Wouter studied Hospitality Management in the Netherlands and later came to Helsinki 4 years ago for private as well as educational reasons. Currently, he works for Management Events, where he started off as an intern and continued after his internship, which he described as a fun learning experience, hard-work but also rewarding. During the internship as a research intern for the Dutch market Wouter learned a lot about customer services, events management, communication and gained cultural knowledge. Wouter did not only want to develop himself as a person, but by working in a highly international work environment he also gained a lot of cultural knowledge and people’s skills. For the future, he wishes to continue to develop himself as a person rather than develop his career. Also, he wishes to return to his initial field hospitality and dreams of having a small restaurant somewhere warmer like Australia.
Wouter described the work life in Management Events as “Americanized”, it is very social, where everybody talks to each other. However, it is also very target driven and fast paced. Working with diverse people is fun, he developed a lot of cultural knowledge and he joked that German and Finns are similar in a way. However, he also faced some cultural difficulties by working with Philippines, where the work ethics are different compared to the Western ethics.
Management Events started around 25 years ago as a convention service office with the former CEO Olli Muurainen. Later, the events started to be more invitations based only. Through the growth of the company more tasks and division have developed, and also the company expended in Finland, then Nordic countries, Europe and then also Singapore. It still plans on expending globally such as Japan and Dubai.
The interview with Wouter was definitely fun and engaging, and I am really looking forward to the coming internship! 🙂