Proof

5 questions for PROOF founding father Luc van Beers


1. Some ‘PROOFIES’ have no idea who you are …

That’s good, isn’t? Mission accomplished. I haven’t been actively involved in PROOF for more than two years. Bea, Wendy and Sascha manage the team, build the agency and make the decisions. PROOF has a really strong team of professionals who are bursting with energy and who don’t need me. Where do I still see my influence? In the quality and the no-nonsense mentality, which are part of the PROOF DNA. PROOF is sustainable, which is precisely what I wanted it to be.

2. You’re the founder of PROOF; what makes you proud?
I was at Nyenrode Business University recently. Bea lectures there sometimes, and I attended one of them. The enthusiasm with which she explained that a strong reputation begins internally, about the importance of an aligned workforce, about alignment throughout the employee journey and how you can achieve that – the story I started out telling has evolved. It was very special to be there. PROOF is doing what I have believed in from the outset: sharing knowledge. The fifth PROOF book is currently being written. It’s about the employee journey and will come out in September. So, proud is an understatement. I’m mega proud.

3. Are clients more willing to take risks than in the past?
I certainly see that things are different. The projects are increasingly international as well as national, and increasingly include the entire employee journey. We help the worlds of HR and Communication come together, and PROOF is also increasingly asked to help with programme activation. I see that PROOF works intensively with clients. The theory has been proven, the models exist, the experience is convincing and thanks to loyal clients, we are more than 150 industry prizes further. Our clients are becoming more and more professional. That’s great.

4. Have you stopped working completely?
Define work? Among other things, I help various start-ups and the de Prael brewery, a sheltered workplace. I am also a life-long supporter of D66 and I am now becoming more closely involved in politics and the party. As far as PROOF is concerned, I’m happy to be ‘the guy with a dog who walks in sometimes’. I love my dog. He gives me the structure I have been looking for for so long. I am reinventing myself after many years of hectic activity, and I also travel a lot on my own through Asia. It is fascinating to see how far behind we are in the Netherlands digitally, and the opportunities digital offers. It’s also good for my partner, Fabian, who can have some peace at home, which is good for his patients in the OLVG hospital.

5. What opportunities do you see for you and for PROOF?
My focus now is mainly on research and adventure. And yes, the future of PROOF feels like a big opportunity. As I said earlier, PROOF’s clients are facing ever greater challenges. Attracting, involving and retaining the right people for organisations still stands or falls on the degree of collaboration between Communication and HR. In the past, they often didn’t want to work together; now they often walk through the door arm in arm. That’s what I meant by clients becoming more professional. PROOF’s clients understand that good concepts offer the right structure to achieve objectives across departments. And yes, structure remains a key word: Bea has also had a dog for years…

 

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