Carolien Poelman is a mountaineer in more than one sense. She is passionate about climbing mountains and has conquered some of the highest peaks in Europe. That’s how she unwinds and regains perspective on life, when things build up.
Looking at her career path until today, it becomes clear that Carolien has climbed a professional mountain or two – and she enjoys it. She’d barely completed her education within organisational psychology before she discovered a niche which had not yet been covered. Based on her own love for the outdoors, she saw the value in consolidating teams out in the open. She started her own outdoor teambuilding company and built up a solid business over the next 3 years.
The experiences learned from her entrepreneurial adventure came in handy as she moved into sales in a large telecommunications company. Being the first sales lady among 20,000 employees, she learned the do’s and don’ts of innovative selling, and soon she went on to various management positions.
Carolien’s career in sales came to a pause as she moved to Germany with her husband. She returned to the Netherlands three years later, now with two children, and ready to kick start her career. “My stepping into HR felt natural, considering my theoretical background and in addition, my practical experience from several organisations, including my own business,” explains Carolien who is extremely driven and curious when it comes to putting cultural differences into play.
MAG45 specialises in our customers’ supply chain
Now, we are lucky to have her in the lead of HR in MAG45, an industrial integrator that specialises in managing their customers’ supply chain. MAG45 is a subsidiary to the Solar Group and a perfect fit to our sourcing and services concept, allowing our customers to focus on their core business. MAG45 joined the Solar Group in 2016, and although we started out as two different companies, the synergies continue to develop us in the same direction.
Headquartered in Eindhoven, NL, MAG45 has a global structure of 16 offices across 10 countries throughout Europe, the US and APAC. These regional offices operate as service and logistics hubs for their customers, providing support with a strong local knowledge. MAG45 primarily focuses on med tech, machinery and equipment, pharmaceutical, industry and FMCG.
Change management is everything
MAG45 is a company in constant development. And that’s a key element in why Carolien is a perfect match to the company. “Enabling people to work together while putting their cultural differences into play triggers me,” Carolien explains. “MAG45 is going through rapid growth right now, and cultivating great team work is the only way we can manage growing at this pace. We have to work together to fulfil our customers’ expectations. It’s as simple as that,” says Carolien, who especially remembers one task where her change competences came into play.
Some time ago, we decided to open a hub in the US. If we were to make full use of the opportunity that was presented to us, we had only 8 weeks to get everything in place. “It may sound like an easy task, but if you start thinking about what it takes to start up a hub from scratch, you’ll find that 8 weeks is equal to almost nothing. Nevertheless, we managed to find a location, recruit the right people, get a warehouse going, take care of insurance, procurement, etc., etc. in time. It involved a lot of travelling, and evening and weekend work, but we came together as a team and we did it!”
For MAG45, as for the rest of the Solar Group, everything begins and ends with our customers. Carolien’s background gives her plenty of insight into what our business can do to make life easier for our customers. “The most important thing for us is to gain our customers’ trust. That’s why it is important that we deliver what we promise. And we do,” Carolien ends.