Meet LiveHire’s Head of Marketing, Robbert Lammers!
Growing up in the countryside area of the South of the Netherlands in a small town called Valkenswaard, Robbert had a competitive interest in both field hockey and tennis. Fascinated with language, in high school Robbert read French and German, as well as Greek and Latin, triggering his love for history and the progressive ideas of the ancient Greeks and Romans. Having experienced a carefree and amazing youth for the first 19 years of his life, it was time to study.
Describing his interest to deeply understand and monitor people behaviour “similar to David Attenborough’s profound animal observations”, Robbert was faced with a decision between studying people in Anthropology or studying Business. Following the more “conventional path”, as Robbert describes it, of Business, he chose to focus specifically on Strategic Management, which included Marketing, Strategy and Finance which he discovered to be “fascinating”.
During his time at University, Robbert had the opportunity to study abroad at Trinity College in Dublin. Robbert explains that “the idea was to spend one term there, but after two weeks I knew I wanted to stay here for a year; it changed my life”. It was in Dublin where Robbert was exposed to students from all over the world, learned different stories, and kickstarted his passion for travel and his desire to live abroad.
Fresh from University, Robbert started his first role in a Corporate Management Traineeship which was a two-year program for a large Media company called Elsevier Science. Robbert explains “the organisation is the global leader in scientific publishing which means you get the opportunity to work with academic thought leaders, even Nobel prize laureates, pretty cool”. At Elsevier, Robbert experienced first hand the move from a print to digital business model. He says “from the very first moment in my career I saw the impact tech can have in disrupting a traditional industry and how it can help a community of professionals get better at what they do”. The role took Robbert all around the globe, living in both New York and Philadelphia. Robbert describes this role as one of the top three that have defined him as a professional.
The second role that Robbert views as a stand out was the role with a mining company that brought him to Australia. Wanting to introduce a new fertilizer product into a competitive, regulated industry, there was a lot at stake both financially and professionally. Robbert’s role was basically to first understand if there was a market need for this new product, which he established that there was, but he then had to establish a plan to introduce it to the market. Robbert describes “at first people just laughed at me saying you can’t disrupt this conservative industry with what you have found”. However, perception changed after he started a global crop study demonstrating the superior impact of the fertilizer on crop growth and quality. The product-market validation was ultimately one of the key foundations of capital raise over GBP 1.5billion. Robbert believes “my work was just one piece of the puzzle…but to be involved in that was amazing”.
The third role that Robbert counts as a highlight was his time at CEB, working on marketing strategy. He explains “at CEB I was advocating the importance of strong Marketing and Sales collaboration and how marketing should be seen as a key driver of growth”. He explains, however, this isn’t exactly how marketing is perceived in most organisations. By introducing alignment between Sales and Marketing, “it resulted not only in increased Marketing-driven revenue, but the team morale started to flourish and as a result, I believe they became better professionals”. It was here that Robbert was closely working with Christy Forrest, LiveHire’s CEO, as part of her leadership team.
When it comes to his leadership and working style, Robbert believes the first things those in a senior position need to acknowledge is “that it’s a pure privilege to work with and manage a team”. He believes that you’ve got to see situations like these as “an opportunity to to make them better professionals” and to not just care about your team on a professional level, but on a human level as well. Robbert also adds “throughout my career I loved it when I was being challenged and introduced to new problems, so I love to test how much I can stretch people to better them”.
Robbert describes his everyday motto as “Carpe Diem” or “Seize the day”, citing that in work it is key to have a passion for what you do, work hard, have fun, and create extraordinary things. Emphasising the importance of an individual to be aligned with the culture of an organisation in order to excel, Robbert sees himself particularly aligned with LiveHire’s values of ‘be curious’ and ‘own it together’ explaining, “these are values that I live with… if you are aligned on values, you’re connected on the deepest level and you can go far”.
Still passionate about movies, reading, travelling and sport, Robbert’s primary passion is his family – wife and two little boys. He believes that “work is really important, but family is the most important thing and I will always have those priorities in that order”.