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Inspiring Journey Video with Pauline Thijssen

We provide life-changing growth strategies for our clients and our candidates. Our Inspiring Journeys series features amazing individuals who tell their story of when they faced a mountain and how they climbed it. Watch our latest inspiring journey video with Pauline Thijssen.

Video Transcription:

I started at Seuss [Recruitment] in 2015 in the summer which was already my first interesting career move because my background is in development studies. I did my Master’s in Maastrict, specialized in humanitarian work. So, going from being a humanitarian to recruitment was already an unconventional career move. But, I was always very open with them from the start. My background is not in recruitment, I don’t have a clue about life sciences but I’m willing to learn. And, I think that really that open attitude and that eagerness to explore new territory really enabled me to pick up things fast; to do things which I never thought initially possible, to develop myself as a recruiter. But, still this urge of wanting to do something in terms of development, in terms of what I actually studied for, always lingered in me. And, I think being open about that with Kieran and Sabine helped me to create opportunities for myself within the company, too.

Already when I started Seuss, I found it important to stay involved in the development industry. So, I joined a small NGO, it’s called Source Connection. And, I did this voluntarily next to my job at Seuss and I knew that every year they send out a person for two months to do a monitoring mission. So, the year after that, I was working exactly a year at Seuss and I decided that this year was going to be me. So, I communicated with the boards. I had to apply for it as well. And then, I was confronted with a choice because I felt already that I wanted to do this quite a while back, let’s say maybe six months before I actually left Seuss.

But what for me was really important is to be open about this urge to go and do this project. So, I sat down with Kieran sweating, nervous, of course, because you’re telling your boss that you want to go and do something else. That’s not a nice message to convey. But, because I was open with Kieran and Sabine from the start about my interests, what excites me, they were appreciative of it. They were supportive of it and even though they were sad, of course, because they didn’t want me to leave Seuss. We really discussed, okay, so you want to do this. How do we move forward from now? And, I said well, I’m only going in six months from now. But, for me as an employee being very grateful for all the skills I acquired while being here, I find it important to be open and I find a very important to give you guys enough time to look for someone else, to get used to the idea of me leaving. But, to not leave you hanging like “Oh, in a month from now, I’m going to do this”, but to prepare.

I think what people do too much also reflecting back on my own struggle is downplay themselves by just using the simple words “if” and “but” like “if only I had more time and “I really would like to do this, but”. I think people feel it deep down when they really want to go and do something, when they want to do something that’s disruptive with their status quo, but they are scared. Why? Because change is disruptive. It’s not an easy thing. But, by downplaying yourself you leave that urge unanswered. It keeps lingering. So, my advice is listen, listen to that urge and don’t downplay it by saying “but ‘no, I can’t do this because and oh, if, yeah, maybe.” No, but be open about it. Listen to it. Communicate it.

Pauline Thijssen is a former life-sciences recruiter at Seuss Recruitment and is currently (and has always been) a humanitarian, fashionista and passionate advocate for others.

Seuss Recruitment is a pharma-recruitment specialist that finds synergistic fits between life-science superheroes and forward-thinking pharma, biotech and clinical research companies using the art of match-making with a modern twist. Call us at +31 (0) 20 29 00 016 or email us to have an engaging conversation about how to transform your career or company.

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