#ProudConnector Unveiled: Mieke Beeuwsaert | Manager Recruitment & Selection
Head over to Instagram, to get an exclusive peek behind the scenes #Mieke's week #instagramtakeover #ProudConnector
What is your position within YouConnect?
I’m Manager Recruitment & Selection, which means I work with a talented team of four highly driven colleagues, coordinating the company’s legal search activities. I’m also responsible for a number of legal searches that I conduct on my own. This role keeps me in daily contact with clients and prospects looking for legal talent as well as candidates ready for new legal challenges.
What did you do before you started at YouConnect?
I started as a lawyer in a medium-sized business office in Brussels and then switched to a role as a corporate lawyer. Before joining YouConnect, I was an operations & business development manager at Bombyx, an NGO active in fair fashion with a production site in Latin America.
What attracted you to your role in YouConnect?
It’s the perfect combination of different things that fascinate me. I’ve always had a keen interest in people and organizations. As a lawyer, I always found it enlightening to get a look behind the scenes of different organizations, and that’s also a privilege we have as recruiters. On top of that, it gives me great satisfaction to offer added value and give advice based on my own experience as a lawyer. And last but not least, from the very beginning, I felt a strong affinity with the YouConnect DNA. Every day, together with the entire team, we build on the growth of our clients and candidates, on our own personal development, and therefore also on the growth of YouConnect as a company. What’s more, we do this in an authentic, qualitative, and sustainable way.
What is your daily motivation?
I always start from a sincere interest in clients and candidates and from the motivation to help and advise. That’s why I consciously give constructive feedback to clients and am always truly happy when candidates tell me they’ve learned something from the interview, or when we’ve exceeded a client's expectations.
What do you think are the most important skills a recruitment consultant should have?
It’s important to be a good listener who can read between the lines and respond with the right questions. Recruiters must also be flexible in their thoughts and actions. Finally, some commercial flair and a good dose of perseverance are also essential.
What makes YouConnect so unique as a company?
Our talented and driven team – the positive drive and the values we consistently apply in the way we work. YouConnect also contributes to sustainability by supporting charities and organizing a give-back day with the team, which I find very valuable.
How would you describe the atmosphere among colleagues at YouConnect?
Positive and pleasant. There’s always a willingness to help each other, the drive to always improve and evolve and grow as a professional and as a person.
What kind of networker are you?
I mainly make contact out of genuine curiosity and a natural interest in people.
Where do you get your energy from?
Oh, I get energy from a lot of things: from personal growth, from camaraderie with colleagues, from variety, from achieving results, and from having satisfied clients and candidates.
Which characteristics do you value most in people you talk to?
Sincerity and openness.
How do you see the future of recruitment?
IT and digitization will never replace the personal interview. However, these tools can underpin recruitment, complement it, and make it more efficient.
How do you bring efficiency into your working day?
I’m at my most efficient when I focus on having a clear to-do list before the day starts.
What type of interviewer are you?
I guess I am quite an inquisitive interviewer. I like to ask a lot of questions.
What are your strengths within the team?
My initiative, my reliability, and my positive approach to everyone.
What is your favorite season and why?
It’s got to be summer! I love the sun and fun outings with friends and family. The holidays, traveling, enjoying a drink or two on the terrace together.
Are you an early bird or a night owl?
I’m an evening person. I’ve never been an early bird.
What was your last online purchase?
A model airplane for my 12-year-old godchild. I wanted to surprise him with something that would cheer him up during the lockdown period, and he was thrilled to bits with it.
What is your favorite song festival hit?
“J'aime la Vie” by Sandra Kim! All that youthful sentiment. I like to sing this at home with a hairbrush as a microphone and play it during family parties.
What is your ultimate dream for yourself?
When the children are a little older, I’d like to take a long trip with the family. After my internship in the legal profession, I traveled the world for six months and found it enormously enriching to see more of the world. I’d definitely like my children to share my interest in other cultures.
What is your dream for the world in general?
Peace for everyone and no more poverty.
What would you like to spend more time on?
On culture, reading books, and sport. I used to be able to read a novel in one sitting, but unfortunately, with two active boys in the house, that’s no longer possible.
What is your favorite ice cream flavor?
I love the simplicity of vanilla, so a fresh scoop of vanilla ice cream is always a hit. I associate eating ice cream with holidays and traveling.
If you were going to live on a desert island, what would you take with you?
As many books as possible on as many subjects as possible!
What really annoys you most of all?
Do you prefer to cook for yourself or order out?
I'd rather order out; although, I do like to try new recipes that everyone’s talking about.
What moves you?
When my children are showing me affection or spontaneously coming up and giving me a big hug. I love that childlike enthusiasm and unconditional love. Art can also really move me. The dance performances of Sidi Larbi Cherkaoui, for example, always get the emotions going. But a book or film can also really touch me and often have me in tears.
Do you like music? If so, what is your all-time favorite song or track?
I certainly like music, but it's hard to choose one particular favorite... Music that I love and that’s also great background music is Nils Frahm. I’ve played his song "Familiar" practically to death! But I also love positive, optimistic songs like “Take a Parachute and Jump” by Something Happens.
Where did you go on your last holiday?
We went with the family to France, an ideal destination in view of the corona pandemic. Initially, the plan was to go to Thailand, but hopefully, we’ll be able to do that next year.
What’s your favorite time of day?
Evening, especially when I can look back on a successful day with a feeling of satisfaction.
How do you like to spend your weekends?
Reading the newspaper, having fun with the family, eating out with friends, going out with friends, and taking in some cultural entertainment like a dance performance.
Are you a country person or a city person?
I’m more of a city person – although I do enjoy the occasional stroll in the countryside.
What is your favorite city and why?
Barcelona! The city has everything: culture, sun, a beach, good food, shopping ... and as well as Barcelona – a bit further from home – I also found Sydney a lovely city.
We have come to the last question: tell me, what event or situation in your life has taught you the most?
Living abroad. After university, I studied for an extra year in Madrid. It was the first time I’d really had to stand on my own two feet, without my family and friends around me. I found it utterly fascinating to live in another country, to learn a new language, and to get to know a different culture and its people. I discovered that I was quite self-reliant and that no matter what happens, I always fall on my feet.