About

When I graduated in 1991 from executive secretary school, the world was at my feet. After a year of hard work, I finally succeeded. And now find a nice job. With all my current knowledge, ready for the perfect job.

But in the real world, the opposite happened. Everything I had learned at secretary school was more like the most ideal situation.

“Don't think, Heleen. I'll do that for you." When my boss said that to me, I didn't even realize it. It wasn't until I got home that the anger surfaced. There I was, almost at the top of the organization. I was secretary to the CEO of a company with more than 400 employees. The other colleagues from the departments called us “high society” (really!). But it certainly didn't feel that way to me.

I stayed with that company for about 4 years. After that I worked as a PA, management assistant and executive secretary. And every time I had a problem with one of my managers. If you are just one level below the management and you are good at observing, you will soon see what is wrong in an organization.

Every time I could pull my hair out of my head: don't they see this… and don't you see that…. Until the moment came that I started managing teams myself. A team after sales, a group of receptionists and a secretariat. Then I found out that managing wasn't as easy as I thought.

I had intended to handle it so much better than all the managers I had, but that was disappointing. So now I had sat on both sides of the table. As an executive secretary, fulminating at her manager and as a manager, fed up with her team. I talked about this with others. It turned out that everyone has a problem with his/her manager. And all those managers are having a problem with their assistants. I thought: I have to do something about this. In my spare time I started taking courses in the field of personal development. And that was the beginning of On Top Management coaching.

Naturally, these courses gave me valuable insights:
the 1st insight: I couldn't change my manager and team members, only myself;
the 2nd insight: I have let go of the need to be liked;
the 3rd insight: even a manager is only human.

The cooperation with my manager and my team had improved considerably in the meantime. But most of all I noticed that I had 'improved'. I now know what my contribution was to the situation. And I also know what to do to change that.

I believe that the secretarial profession consists of 2 aspects. First, you have the mental aspect. How are you as a person. You can take the best minutes, the agenda can be fantastically planned, if you don't have the right mind set, a healthy boost of self-confidence and a positive attitude, you will have a hard time at work. And in addition, you have the secretarial aspect. All those things you learned on the executive secretary school. I especially believe in a businesslike and practical approach to work. With positive, concrete and SMART actions that you can apply in your work the next day.

Phew, this makes my customers super happy. Just the idea that you have control over your own situation.

And further...

  • the name On Top has to do with my hobby klettersteig (a form of rock climbing);
  • and when you have reached the top and are On Top, then you have overview and control over the situation;
  • I live partly in France and partly in the Netherlands;
  • I am sometimes told that I am quite businesslike and direct (but it comes from a good heart);
  • but I am mainly action-oriented, every session with me ends with an action;
  • I am good at thinking 'out of the box';
  • I really put everything in my mouth. Except honey, whipped cream and mushrooms;
  • I like a nice chic lunch in a nice restaurant;
  • and when I hear Prince, I feel happy again.

Would you like to know more about the possibilities at On Top Management coaching? Give me a call: 06 - 2303 1090 or send an email: info@ontopmanagers.nl

Let me introduce myself...