October 4th, 2023: our 40-year anniversary. A milestone that we – as a family-owned company – are proud of. This moment in time, of course, invites us to look back and look ahead. In the future we will strive to achieve high quality results through our personal approach and commitment. With this we hope to offer our clients an independent and reflective perspective. In order to achieve quality, a skilled and qualified team is crucial. That is why Hoek Consultants is committed to lifelong learning: it is important to us that our Partners and Consultants have the right qualifications, receive supervision and follow relevant educational programs. We believe in ‘walk the talk’: providing high quality expertise requires us to continually develop our expertise.
First generation – ‘The art of observing’
As a Global HR Director, Jacob Jan Hoek was used to working on different levels within the HR domain. He noticed a growing demand in the market for support in hiring and recruitment. This demand and the HR topics that he had gained experience in, created the foundations for Hoek Consultants’ services: Recruitment, Outplacement and Interim Management. Although he was already active in a wide network of clients, he chose to expand Hoek Consultants’ recognition by advertising. In order to make it stand out, he became the first one to use colour in their advertisements. These advertisements were typical of his way of working. ‘We know the way to the right personnel’, was one of the slogans above his first advertisements. The advertisement included a picture of the purple heather with a path running through it.
His personal approach, creativity and level of service struck a chord with his clients. Hoek Sr. considered finding the right candidates a form of art: it’s not just a checklist of competencies, it also matters who you are as a person. You’re not just an employee or employer. You’re also a partner, parent, daughter, son, friend. You have a personal life, drivers and personal norms and values. All of this combined is relevant to who you are as a person, and how you can be and a possible fit for a future position. Looking at the person behind the candidate is something that characterised Hoek Sr. and to this day the team of Hoek Consultants honors this approach. The slogan “The art of looking” arose from this philosophy and is still relevant today.
Second generation – ‘We value the art of active observation and keen listening.’
In 2009 Frans Hoek became Hoek Consultants’ Managing Partner. Over the past 14 years he and his wife, Gea Hoek (Executive Coach and Supervisor), have firmly established Hoek Consultants 2.0. The initial start required pragmatic choices, partly due to the banking crisis. Everything had to be reconsidered: the website, ERP systems, and expanding Hoek Consultants’ services. A few characteristics remained: the colour purple and the slogan ‘The art of observing’. Pretty soon requests were made by clients for advice, leadership development and coaching. This led to the realization that you should just lean on brand recognition. Rather, you can believe in who you are, what you’re capable of doing and what you have to offer as a person and as a company. This also requires vulnerability: admitting to yourself and your clients what your expertise is and what you cannot provide. By being vulnerable you can make a genuine connection. And this we still do. ‘We value the art of active observation and keen listening’, became the new slogan to connect with our expanded services in the field of Executive (Team) Coaching.
After a few years the conviction grew: ‘This is a fit for us. This is something we can do!’ With that belief confidence grew. Over the course of the next few years the services of Hoek Consultants were expanded nationally and internationally. This included a strong increase in expertise in the field of Leadership Development, Executive Coaching and Supervision. The past years have allowed us to provide numerous international and national organisations with leadership development programs, board room coaching and external evaluation of supervisory boards.
From the setbacks we experienced, we have learned. ‘You become more resilient. You rise again. You continue and can be proud of persevering. Not just being proud of yourself but being proud of what we can accomplish together and what we can achieve as a team.’
In 2023 our firm has existed for 40 years, and we have made it happen again and again. It seems like time has flown by. This also makes us humble, realizing how much trust we received. With the following commitment we can continue to connect with our clients: ‘Believe in yourself, dare to talk about what you’re going through and how you feel, keep moving, keep reflecting and above all: stay connected.’
In the here and now, Hoek Consultants is considered to be a reliable partner in the areas of Leadership Development, Executive Search, Executive Coaching and Supervision. The team continues to show that they keep investing in their own development through intervision, supervision and various education, accreditations and studies.
We believe in building a sustainable future. This means that we look beyond the here and now; with great attention to themes that are relevant for current and future generations. We challenge ourselves and our partners to act out of values and to reflect on a futureproof perspective. The relevant themes and topics, such as inclusivity, diversity and sustainability, don’t stand alone. They are part of an integrated approach in which each topic plays a role. This is how we build the future, while considering all options and staying in contact.