Employee Spotlight: Patrick Willemsen, Director Technical Community EMEA

Where did you grow up?
The Netherlands

What was your first or strangest job?
When I was 14 years old I started working in my aunts little pub. During the grand opening I was doing the dishes from 10AM until 11PM. I got paid 5 Dutch guilders (approx. $1.50 at the time), but the fun was worth a million.

What do you like most about your current job?
The one thing I like the most is the point during the sales process when our customer starts understanding the possibilities of Aras Innovator. Typically, the journey starts with them being skeptical, but then they become a fan with tons of ideas for what to do next with the platform. I love that. It means I did a good job.

What is your greatest accomplishment, work or personal?
In my youth I used to stutter on every single word. Nothing came out of my mouth fluently in any of the languages I speak. I beat that

Tell us a fun fact about you.
I am the chairman of the local “Fasnachtsgesellschaft” (Carnival Guild / Society). For a Dutch guy – living in Switzerland – it's a great achievement in my humble opinion.

Pick three words to describe yourself.
Cheerful, Liberal, Good Listener

What is one thing on your bucket list?
Lean Japanese. I am a big fan of Japan - the country, its people, the food, the culture...

What is your favorite quote?
“Je moet schieten, anders kun je niet scoren” ("You have to shoot, otherwise you cannot score") said by the famous Dutch soccer player Johan Cruijff

Do you have any hobbies outside of work?
Photography, camping (especially with an RV in the US or Canada)

You’re about to perform in a karaoke bar. What song do you pick?
"Bloed, Zweet en Tranen" from André Hazes (translates into “Blood, Sweat and Tears”). A Dutch song from a guy who died too young. Supporters of Ajax sing this song at the beginning of each soccer match they play. As it happens, but just by coincident, Ajax is my favorite soccer team.

If you could hang out with anyone for a day, who would it be and why?
I would like to hang out with Michael J. Fox. I have seen the “Back to the Future” trilogy from top to bottom and back. How he copes with Parkinson disease is just admirable. I would go back in time with him and be present at the “Back to the Future” film set. The only thing you need is a flux capacitor.

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