Newspaper article: A company that feels like a family!

Frans Tijssen is an editor at a popular Dutch Newspaper. He writes a column about economics every third Wednesday of the month and recently interviewed Erik for one of these Wednesday columns.

A company that feels like a family. Wouldn’t you like that? And, is it really possible? You only have to look around most places of work to know that a company that feels like a family is not common. Many employees prefer to keep private and work separate. They only talk about problems at home when there really is no other option, or at most in a very small group of colleagues. We all know that there is nothing wrong with you if you prefer to share personal stories only with good friends or family or in your church. But, it is also very nice if you can share your personal feelings at your place of work as for most of us we often work very closely with our colleagues. Apart from the hours you sleep, you spend just as many hours with colleagues as with the people you live with.

Love as a success factor in business

ICM Educational & Business Institue co-founder Erik Smithuis, showed last autumn during a seminar at his training institute that you can turn love into a success factor in business. It is remarkable that ICM has been chosen year after year as the best of their kind. They have experienced rapid growth, and the founders do a lot for charities. So it is possible: to make space for vulnerability and security, and to achieve good economic results at the same time.

Erik shared his own experience that a new employee asked him after a few months: “When will it happen?” She meant: when will the “clash” come. She could not imagine that you can get along so nicely and that everyone is so friendly all the time in an organisation. She had previously worked for ten years at a company that operated with a fear culture.

A company that feels like a family – it seems too good to be true at first. It is refreshing to know that there are business people who want something more than competition at the expense of others and who don’t only go for their own personal successes.

> please note: this article is in Dutch