DISCOVER Magazine #7

Selma de Ridder

Published in category: People


Thinks: two children – Mika (8) and Noortje (6)
Chooses: the Shabab Oman II as her favourite ship

“Working for Damen brings me back to my roots as I was born and raised in Gorinchem. I work here as a Global Talent Manager. The interview for this position four years ago was certainly a memorable moment as I found myself sitting opposite my former classmate Arnout Damen. Back then I had no idea how much the company had grown.

There is definitely an international character in my current role. My team and I develop tools for our management and HR to attract, develop and encourage (leadership) talent within Damen at a global level. We offer them and their managers the right tools, programmes and support so they can contribute their utmost to the success of Damen. This is a nice challenge because of, among other things, the various cultures and forms of social interaction that we encounter. For example, you can easily ask a Dutch manager about his or her talents, but in Asia people are less accustomed to discussing such matters. I have learned to observe well and not judge too quickly. This comes from my father who was a KLM pilot – he gave me his open and cosmopolitan look at the world.

At home I have two little ones, and they know how to keep me busy during weekends. I love going walking or cycling with them together with my boyfriend. Combining this with a visit to a museum is a favourite of ours: the Sculptures by the Sea in Scheveningen or the Kröller-Müller Museum in the Veluwe National Park, for example. I like to read, draw or paint in my free time. Although the latter often involves a different type of painting as we live in an old house in Delft, which needs a lot of maintenance. Craftsmanship is something I appreciate and is what I see at Damen – especially the connection between innovation and tradition. The contrast between a traditional sailing ship like Shabab Oman II and the new Service Operations Vessel is a good example.”

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