The past 3 years at Tobania were an unbelievable journey! From the day we’ve presented ourselves to the board up to now, it has been challenging, fun, competitive, relaxing, joyful, difficult! It has been great and amazing #trumpwords. Those who have been working closely with me, know that I was 100% all-in. I really gave it all I had. Nevertheless, now it’s time for me to move on.

Since I’ve been one of the founding fathers of this unit, I wanted to explain thoroughly my personal reasons to leave and at the same time reassure you that great times lie ahead of you. All building blocks are there to actually build the greatest business unit ever with a strong culture of amazement. 

 
I won't throw myself from the pier 
I'm gonna go home and shut up for a year 
And when the year is over I'll reappear 
And have a solution 
I've reason to believe that what I find 
Is gonna change the face of human kind 
And all these years before well I was blind 
That's my conclusion 
'Cause I'm the architect 


"The Architect” - dEUS 

As you might have read of heard, I was out for some time. I’ve stayed home for about 2 months before returning early November. The last year was very hard for me. I’ve kept on going. Work started for me literally when I woke up in the morning and ended when I got in bed. I had no “off button” in my head. And at the same time, I’ve started to ignore my gut-feeling. This is a disaster for me!  And so my body reacted in every possible way it could when all my batteries had no more juice left. These 2 months made me overthink my professional behaviour, my private life and my personal well-being. It made me evaluate my personal health and the outcome is that I want to make some fundamental changes. So, without actually having signed somewhere else yet, I make the call to go for myself this time. It’s a bit scary, but the only right thing to do at this moment. There are possibly more than 1000 reasons for me to stay, but these are all external reasons. This time, I won’t ignore the internal sign. It’s time for me, for me!

Proud

3 years ago we’ve started with a dream to change something in consultancy. It rose questions for us like: “How can we actually change the way people are treated within consultancy firms? How can we be different as managers and actually give a damn about those who are in the trenches?”. The people centric approach was a success and we’ve grown harder than we could possible imagine. Because of that, new challenges arose faster than we’ve expected and made our job somewhat harder without (sometimes) a perfect process in place. I’m really proud that we’ve stayed true to our values and beliefs.

The last year, was very challenging but we’ve managed to build foundations for the future: OHANA is ready to launch, Agile EVOLUTION is without any doubt the best offering for Agile transformations in the market, the first digital roadmaps are co-created with customers and now we have full internal support to organise office break-out sessions (after making a point that traditional approaches don’t always work anymore today). I see people who are ready to step up and who are starting to inspire others. I see a lot of new initiatives coming from all our consultants, from you. It’s all I could have dreamt for, it’s all I’ve been working for. It’s what I always wanted, making myself obsolete. 

Never say never,because limits, like fears, are often just an illusion.
– Michael Jordan –

Today’s mantra is gratitude  

Tobania is actually a great place to work. It’s a special place, but it’s also a great place! And I tell you why…  Lode Peeters supported me: first with my trial against a previous employer (on a personal level) and later on he became a firm believer of my ideas (OHANA). He’s a true entrepreneur and he deserves all the credits in supporting our way of working. Willem is not that typical Business Unit Director in a consultancy business unit. He’s far more than that and showed enormous loyalty to this business unit and its people. He’s been the commander-in-chief you want to have when the going gets tough. Kim is 100% the opposite from me, and yet 100% the same. In my professional life, I’ve never had a more complementary colleague than him. I think I can say that both Willem and Kim, the other founding fathers, are more than just colleagues for me. We’ve build this amazing management and staff team. I’ve seen them going the extra mile more than once. In challenging times, they’ve always stood their ground! David, Femke, Killy-Bo, Free, Laura, Luk and Vincent, you are rockstars! 

Last but definitely not the least, there is you! My respect goes to all of you who are making a difference every day at our customers. You deserve all the credits. Some of you already also decided to help us further grow this great story and some are already helping us to further mature. 

So… Let it be clear: Tobania.Business has strong foundations, is moving in the right direction and the future looks bright. Other people will rise, but the old EBS culture will always remain. It’s always people first! 

Thank you so much for trusting me.
This is not are farewell, it’s simply said: “See you later”!