In at the deep end in Vietnam

To Brian, two things are particularly important when going to work: It must be fun, and he must be out of his comfort zone. He experienced both things when he previously took over the role as Country Manager in Vietnam.

Brian has been with Netcompany for almost 13 years. “I have a lot of friends who are doing the whole ‘changing jobs every few years’ thing, and they ask me: why are you still in the same place? – well, why should I leave?” Brian says. “I am really excited about my tasks, I keep getting new things to do, I am constantly being challenged by all sorts of things! – and I really like my colleagues, I wouldn’t be without them!”

If you see something that needs fixing, take responsibility for it and fix it 
Since Brian’s first day at Netcompany, he has been extremely ambitious. “I mean, it wasn’t like I started as a student assistant and right away thought, I want to make partner! – but I have always had my eye on the next step” Brian has done this by asking himself, what it would take to reach the next level on his career path, and then constantly taking on more responsibility. “If you see something that needs fixing, take responsibility for it and fix it!” 

Whenever he has been in doubt about how to approach his professional development, he turned to his mentor or area director and asked what it would take to make the next jump. A part of this was simply making them aware that he was interested in making that jump. “If you say 'Oh no, I can’t do that, that’s too much' – then no one will give you more responsibility. You have to be ready to be thrown in at the deep end. That’s what’s so great about it! You learn that ‘hey! I can actually do this!’ Then you really grow! If you then reach a point where you realize ‘actually, I cannot do this’, then it’s important you have someone to reach out to. I have always felt I had that at Netcompany.”

A new challenge: Vietnam
If there ever was a time when Brian was truly thrown in at the deep end it was at the end of 2019, when he got the opportunity to take over the role as Country Manager in Vietnam. When the opportunity arose, he had two voices in his head; one semi-scared voice saying: “Oh my god!” and one more confident voice saying: “That could be pretty awesome!” Brian and his wife, Marianna, have lived abroad before and were toying with the idea that it could be nice to work abroad at some point. Suddenly this opportunity arose, and a decision had to be made – quickly.

Brian said yes. Without ever having visited Vietnam – but full of positive expectations. Expectations that, fortunately, were met. “The colleagues we have in Vietnam are great, they are so sweet, and right away I felt really welcome!” 

Even more of all the things that makes Netcompany great 
Former Country Manager and Partner Jesper Klitgaard played a central part in creating a new office that leaves no doubt that you have entered Netcompany. Jesper gave a clear direction for the office – a direction that Brian continued. 

”I believe it is important to continue the journey the Vietnam office has been on, and get even more of our know-how, methodology and global processes into play here. We should also bring in even more of our Netcompany Academy activities, even more knowledge sharing in and across teams and offices, After Dark activities, Friday bar culture, ‘hygge’ and fun during the workday – even more of all of that. That is, after all, what we in Netcompany are so good at!”

We have the same DNA as when I first started at Netcompany
It’s no coincidence that the social aspect of work life is such a key focus for Brian when he talks about his previous role as Country Manager in Vietnam. The social part of his work life has always been very important to him. “I have always been very involved in Netcompany After Dark, and I have been a member of the party committee in Copenhagen for what feels like a lifetime!”

“I spent quite a lot of energy in cultivating the social aspect of the Netcompany DNA that got me hooked back in the day. Now we are more than 3000 employees, but I do really think that we have the same DNA as when I applied for my first job here. Back when we were only 134 people. And this, I think, is really important!”

The teams that perform the best are those that have the most fun

If Brian was to guess why he was chosen to take over from Jesper, he’d say his appreciation for the social aspects of work culture played a big part. “I am very much a people person – and I think that means something. Not just when it comes to managing the Vietnam office, but when it comes to managing all the offices.” And it is important, he thinks, because at the end of day, it has to be fun to go to work. Also, the results speak clearly: The teams that perform best are those that have the most fun together. “You just don’t get on each other’s nerves the same way; you make more room for each other. It really makes a difference!”, Brian says.

Increased focus on Netcompany Academy and recruitment

Aside from increasing the focus on After Dark in Vietnam, Brian turned up the volume on the Netcompany Academy activities to strengthen the development of employees and to align the way we all work at Netcompany. Brian always looks forward to meeting new colleagues and to ensure that each employee is getting the challenges needed to take them to the next level - just like Brian experienced it himself. To make sure that each employee gets thrown in at the deep end. Furthermore, he’s committed to making sure that the right people are allocated to the right projects.

Brian was also involved in recruiting a bunch of new colleagues to the Vietnam office. Together with the recruitment team and other colleagues, he conducted interviews and attended guest lectures, events, and career fairs at the IT universities in Ho Chi Minh City to talk about all the exciting challenges Netcompany has to offer.

He had the opportunity of exploring the city, the country and the other countries in the area. He even tried learning a few Vietnamese phrases. "I challenged our HR Manager in Vietnam, Thao, to teach me one Vietnamese word a day, and then I’d teach her one in Danish.” Brian says and laughs.