#ValuableDiversity (Interview Series) – ep. 10 – Humanity & Sales


Introducing you to interesting people around the world


 

Meet Tom Lauwers

– Director of Sales Operations (Germany) – 

Did you ever consider relocation? If not, would you ever? If not, why?

My guest for today did. Considered it. Measured pros and cons. And took advantage of all the benefits such a jump can bring.

Mr. Tom Lauwers has a top position within the company he works for, yet he is as approachable as a happy kid. Plus, he is always there to provide help to anyone that asks for it. Our conversations were always warm and I could genuinely feel his true nature.

And one more thing: try reaching out to him during week days, as weekends are exclusively reserved to family time. Respect for that!

If you’d like to get a tour of his mindset, give a read to his answers below. I’m sure you will enjoy every word! I know I took a great lesson out of this!

***

1. Good day, Mr. Lauwers. For people who never got in contact with you, please tell us a bit about yourself.

I’m a recruitment professional, a loving father & family man and, above all, a team leader and servant. I have been working in recruitment for the last 8 years now and I gained experience in leading, developing & managing diverse sales and recruitment teams.

2. As you already know, this series is dedicated to discovering beautiful people from different corners of the world. All that, for understanding what diversity is and how different people, form different areas, see it. Therefore, please let us know your view on the matter, especially as you are from Belgium, but living in Germany.

I’m all about DIVERSITY! Growing up, I always had friends from different parts of the world and that gave me a great youth and view on the world. Also, during my career, the teams who were diverse and multi-cultural were the teams that gave me the best of times and productivity. I loved being part of them!

” The teams who were diverse and multi-cultural were the ones to give me the best of times!

Getting out of your comfort zone (learning different cultures, religions, living in different countries…) is what really adds value to your life and I can only recommend it, as a learning experience. Not only did I change countries, but my fiancée is a Moslima (from Morocco); so, our daughter and future son will be raised with the mindset that Diversity is the way forward for a quality life.

3. How did you feel when you first learned about relocating? Was it fear? Or excitement? Or a bit of both?

Of course both, but I also knew that I would regret it more if I wouldn’t have done it. The moments it got difficult I just thought back to what got us here and the good moments.

4. Are there major differences?

Language, food and more reserved people were probably the biggest ones. However, after a short period (once you adapt to the local culture), you realize we are all people and that we have similarities.

5. Keeping the curiosity in the diversity area… I know you are the co-host of W4E (Women for Empowerment) weekly series on LinkedIn. This includes contacting women from all over the world, for sending a messages of encouragement. How did this brilliant idea come up? Was there any specific reason?

“Lift somebody up when you want to feel uplifted”

Abhijit and I are ‘do-ers’. And when we feel passionate about something or we have an idea, we just run with it and get things done . We had a conversation about how we want to put women in the spotlight, empower other people and shine a light on diversity and inclusion… and we felt LinkedIn was the perfect platform to do it. So… #W4E was born.

6. Was there any message, in particular, that touched you to the core?

From all the interviews we have taken, there were some really powerful messages and the stories have been really inspiring… Really showing the power of diversity to me!

People are people!~

“This is one of the messages that really touched me to the core.

7. Now, just a personal curiosity: how do you manage to keep yourself so friendly, considering your position?

I’m a passionate person and sometimes my passion gets in the way, so I’m not always friendly. But I do try to be the best version of myself and, most importantly, I try to have fun, as we have only our NOW… I get a lot of energy to see other people succeed or being happy. One of my favorite quotes is: “Lift somebody up when you want to feel uplifted”. Some may say it’s selfish, but it’s the truth.

8. Let’s bring up sales, for a short while. What is it that you learned, during all these years in the field, that you feel comfortable using in your day to day (personal) life with? Do you think that sales practices help when you look for a higher-level connection (in the means of compassion and mutual respect) with someone?

Sales is all about building relationships. And, if you become good or even a natural in building relationships, you will “sell” more than experienced sales people…

“Never sell yourself short!”

Building genuine relationships – being interested in the other person – and keeping your promise are values I use in my day to day life. That helped me to become a successful sales person.

9. And yet another curiosity of mine… Both from a personal and professional perspectives, how do you see social media (LinkedIn, more specifically) evolving?

I can write a book about this… But – in a nutshell – this will keep growing and, if you aren’t spending your time here, you will probably miss the train. Building ONline and OFFline relationships is probably going to be the most in demand competency one needs to master in the nearby future.

10. Also, from a salesman point of view, after all the time you spent engaging, if you were to “sell” the atmosphere on LinkedIn, how would you approach this?

LinkedIn is a platform to learn, collaborate and find quality relations and work. The most TRUTHFUL platform out there, from my point of view. I only have LinkedIn and Twitter, for example, as I seen too much FAKE on other platforms. And I don’t like to play that game!

11. Just before we conclude this interview, would you like to share with us the greatest lesson of your life and how you managed to acknowledge it?

Never sell yourself short! You can do more as you think it through. And, once you enable the belief that you can learn and do everything you want, you will start to build up confidence; and progress will follow shortly. I didn’t believe till I was 28. How could, a guy who didn’t go to University and have been working in bars, coffee shops and restaurants for 10 years, succeed? Belief, passion & perseverance, combined with hard work, can take you where you want to go!

Diversity is the way forward for a quality life”

12. As a final word, from any perspective you’d like to use, what would be the most important message to send out to the readers?

I didn’t touch on being grateful. Yet, so let me show my gratitude to you, Andrada! It’s people like you – who shine the light on others – that should get the spotlight more! Thank you for everything you do and also this opportunity!

***

Mr. Lauwers, the pleasure is all mine! I am grateful for the opportunity to understand why being genuinely interested in the others is so important! I see now that it can bring more benefits than going for one’s personal goals only. Another lesson to be thoroughly acknowledged! And I hope people will start applying this more and more!

*The photos used in this article were provided by the rightful owner, with clear consent. Using them without prior agreement, may become subject of the copyright law. All rights reserved to Tom Lauwers*

Tom Lauwers can be reached through the below channels:

LinkedIn:    https://www.linkedin.com/in/tomlauwers/

Twitter:       @TomLauwers3

Next week (07.06.2018)Dr. Aladin Lijassi

Naivity or wholeheartedly?

I may be called a dreamer, or an idealist, or a warrior for good, or even a naive one. But I do believe in people. I do believe in beauty and I do belive in change. And I know they all exist!

What do you see about the others first? How important is the first impression to you? And how many credit do you give to someone in, the first place? Where does your trust stand? Do you judge by the covers or let actions (not windy words) speak for themselves? How objective are you? And one last thing: how important COMMUNICATION and TRUTH are to you?

You see, I dislike backstage games with all my being. This is why I’m trying to make people lose their masks…

Remember: Showing your true face only makes you vulnerable if you allow the others to belive it as such.

But, in order to avoid that, train yourself not to! Teach yourself to BELIVE in what’s within YOU and others will acknowledge it as well. That’s a fact! Not a corporate one, but a REAL one. And trust the Almighty’s power, regardless of the name you know it for. There is only One, but we all call it different ways.

What is, afterall, this article about?

Is about you, me, it, them, us! Is about everyone and each of us. Is about not playing others, for our own good. Is about what humanity looks like thru my lenses. Is about being there, shaking a hand, lifting a head up when in need, offering a shoulder to cry on and wipe the tears… Is about losing the ego and embracing Universal Love… Is about care, hope and a new age of life on Earth.

Naive
Photo credits: arthit.ru

A new age that should bring up light, while not fighting the dark, but turning it into a ray…

Darkness has always been there. If it weren’t, there would have been no lessons, thus, no evolution. But energies shift and perspectives need to do too!

[listen to: Michael Jackson – Come together]

I may be called a dreamer, or an idealist, or a warrior for good, or even a naive one. But I do believe in people. I do believe in beauty and I do belive in change. And I know they all exist!

As steep as a character may seem, it’s been built like that, not inherited. People did hurt people who turned out to be selfish. And mean. And greedy. And desperate to rise above all, by all means. Regardless of the heads they need walk and to build an empire upon.

There’s always a reason for the dark. Some souls might have felt abandoned, at some point. They might have been betrayed and need to (re)build their own self-confidence back. Some might have been abused and didn’t know how or were to weak to stand up for themselves. And once they’re all grown-up, they blame it on the society. And chose to avenge their hurt, by hitting others. But that’s no way to heal a wound…

We cannot take back what happened in the past. A past that’s already history. A past that needs to be let go of and left where it belongs – behind.

Just picture this:

You work in a call center (what a fast paced, ever-changing environment!). You take a call and you hear an angry voice, but you’re not allowed to hang up the phone before the complaint is solved – one way or another. If you yell at the client, you will only make their anger grow. But if you explain things nicely, by the end of the call, that customer may thank you for your attitude and the resolution may turn out better than you believed it would.

Now picture the next scenario. Again, in a call center. After taking the call with an angry client (but you can’t keep your composure), the resolution is an escalation and the bloom of complaint. You finally hang up, but have no time to go on a break – for your nerves to loosen up. And the phone rings again. You’re frustrated because of the former customer. So your answer might be violent, towards a calm customer, this time. So, the first impulse may be to let your anger burst and reflect over the calm person at the other end of the line. Now, what’s the outcome of this scenario? Not a good one, for sure. Unless you realize your attitude on due time, apologize and start over. If you’re lucky and fair enough to the client, you may be understood and forgiven for the initial reaction.

Now take this example in real life (it is, actually, a real example). Do you tend to outburst and let your anger flow towards the others? Do you tend to lose your faith in people because you’ve been hurt in the past? Do you tend to build an untouchable castle, surrounded by milion-tones walls, closed with the heaviest iron gate and then run for shelter in the highest tower? Or do you dig a cold dungeon, hide in there and chain yourself to deceit? Or do you stand tall and fight the villain, knowing that you will come out unharmed? Or do you look for allies to join forces and, together, to overcome the hardships?

Now let’s take another example. The example of kids… We all know how unpredictable the little ones can be. But picture this: they fight over a toy. With claws and teeth and everything they can make use of. And, no matter the approach, they won’t end that before one of them gets the toy. Or you take it. And if you do, they will both join forces in the utmost terrible act of defense, putting up a forever-lasting cry. But when they calm down, will they still play together? And will they ask you for the toy back, making the most heart-melting promise of not fighting over it again?

Drawing the line: are we naive if we belive in the good and feel it wholeheartedly? Can we do something about it? I mean, can we ask for the toy back and promise that things will straighten up?

[listen to: Paolo Nutini – Iron Sky]

The Almighty is calm, but takes the toy away, if necessary, so that we learn valuable lessons: unconditional love, respect for the others and collaboration!

Then why do we need backstage games? And why do we need to fight each other for wining a trophy that will perish as fast as we achieved it? When we can work together and build an everlasting playground?!

Love,
A.

My New Year’s wish to you…

We search for wealth and we search within… We’re advocates of environment or destroy it with bare hands… We write, we sing, we build, we dance; we swim, we cook, we sew, we work the land… We help and watch pain passing by behind our eyes; we give freely and we expect reward. We judge and we accept..

This one goes out to all of you, to each and every one of you out there, no matter how strong our relationship is or not… No matter how far or close you are… No matter how wealthy or poor you are. No matter your religion, skin color or number of pounds!

We’re all here for a reason, we all have lessons to learn and we all need love, care, self-awareness and trust. We’re all beautiful; we just need to see that!

Another 12 months have passed… Another 365 days… Another 4 seasons. But we’re still here…

We wake up every day and go to bed each evening; we breathe, we love, we hate, we forget and we remember. We cherish and we let go with the wind; we make money and we make memories; we follow and we decide for ourselves. We’re black, white, Asian, African, Catholic and orthodox, Muslim and Jewish, Hindu and non-believers. We speak all kinds of languages, yet we can feel the same vibe. We’re analytical, creative, angry and zen. Our hair is blonde, brown, red, grey… And straight… And curly… We’re slim and fluffy, we keep a diet and eat without concern. We over-plan and go with the flow… We search for wealth and we search within… We’re advocates of environment or destroy it with bare hands… We write, we sing, we build, we dance; we swim, we cook, we sew, we work the land… We help and watch pain passing by behind our eyes; we give freely and we expect reward. We judge and we accept..

But who cares about all these? Who makes the rules? Who compels us to follow anything else but our hearts? Do we have to agree so that we can accept? Do we have to fight over lands and who’s first in line? Do we love competition beyond compassion?

We have kids or hope to have. We teach them the best we can and hope we bring up their character according to the society. What society? A robotic society?!

But is this really what we wish for the New Year to bring?

Or would we rather aim for the higher consciousness, for a life with no fear and for a land with no borders?

Just gaze at the stars for a moment. Just stop right there and take the time… Don’t think! Just breathe and watch. Don’t analyze, just accept their shine! Don’t wish upon a falling one, just see it going down!

Do they fight? Do they struggle? Or is there enough room for each of them, just enough to sprinkle their dust and draw their halo? Is there a path aligned in front of them? Or do they just freely swim in the infinity of the Universe?

Now think about the sun and the moon. What’s their purpose? What were they created for? To bring their light to all of us or to fight over the reign of day over night? Or night over day? Do they collaborate, shining in tandem, or do they try to extinguish each other’s power?

Now think about the human race… Do we like where we’re at right now? Does hatred, misunderstood power and ruling bring us any hope? Does our robotic way of being help any of us and the ones around? Do labels scream their doctrine from an old page that loud? And does the new frighten us so much? And what about the NOW? Is it really worth overlooking? Why do we love the misery of worrying and living in what’s already history that much?

One thing is certainwe can rise above these all and start working to knowing ourselves better, one individual at a time; one step at a time; one day at a time; one whispered wish at a time…

Waiting for someone else to do it before us and bring the magic of self discovery on a silver plate at our feet will not solve anything. Will bring no resolution. Start with yourself and the world will change. It needs to change!

What we’re doing now only brings destruction to humanity! Bitterness is what’s beyond the walls of glass perception. The thin ice of false expectations will break one day. And we will all sink into the waters of deceit. The sky is crying because of us! Let us bring back its smile!

That’s my New Year’s wish to you! All of you! Each of you!

We are all in this together. And only together will we make it through. But starting with an individual exercise!

Just slow down for a bit and give it a thought: is it worth it or is it not? Can we do this or are we too complacent for such a task?

Love,
A.

Photo credits: Pexels.com