Alex de Vries , 16 maart 2023
Members in the spotlight: Hans Treurniet
Hans Treurniet (70), member since 1980, shares his thoughts on filling job openings effectively.
At seventy, Hans still loves his work. In his long and fulfilling career in recruitment and selection, he has gained insight into people and companies and the value they bring each other. For both employers and potential employees, he has found matching the right job with the right person to be of utmost importance.
Making a career
What you’ve studied isn’t as important as making what comes afterwards suit you, Hans divulges. But that doesn’t mean you change yourself to fit a job – it means you get to know yourself so you can end up with a job that fits you.
While studying economics, Hans taught high school classes. “The seed was planted there,” he says: he learned that he was good at working with people and enjoyed it. After graduating, he ended up at a marketing company. Finding recruitment and selection, which the company did on the side, more enjoyable, Hans worked hard at it. His results were so good that the focus of the business slowly shifted. Eventually the company’s name was changed to reflect this focus, and after two more years, when Hans was 35, he became the owner.
Hans did recruitment and selection for construction businesses. They would come to him for crucial but hard-to-fill job openings, and Hans and his employees would search through their methodically-built archives and networks. They kept working hard and working smart, growing the business and eventually moving into a large building Hans bought, in Rotterdam.
The essence of filling a job opening
Hans still lives in that building, but now that he doesn’t work as much anymore he has transformed it from an office into a home, with a museum-like exhibition of items that he likes. The collection reflects who he is, as like Hans is in the business of knowing people, he also makes a point of knowing himself. That’s something he recommends to everyone, for life and for finding a career. “Try things out, get to know what you like and what you are like; (…) above all, be honest with yourself.”
He urges employers, on the other hand, to ask potential employees a lot of follow-up questions and to not hire someone based on a single conversation or when having any doubts about them.
“It’s all about people,” Hans says. “The people that work in a company are its most important capital.” Where a home is shaped by a single person or family, a company is shaped by many, and by many additional factors. If a person doesn’t fit in, they won’t be around for long. With his many years as a recruiter, Hans has found the match between a company and a potential employee to be the most important consideration.
Furthermore, Hans always looks for entrepreneurial types and people willing to work hard – those are valuable qualities for a company. He concludes: “when there are people who make an effort for their job, are honest, and who can communicate upwards and downwards, then a company is doing well.”