We are thrilled to announce that Saskia De Jong has accepted the role of Sales Director Americas. She will start her in new role as of November 1st. We interviewed Saskia so she could share some insights and thoughts about what she’s excited about and what’s next for the Avinode sales team.
We are thrilled to announce that Saskia De Jong has accepted the role of Sales Director Americas. She will start her in new role as of November 1st.
Saskia joined Avinode nearly 6 year ago and has previously represented Avinode as Regional Sales Manager for the Southeast, Midwest and Manhattan, followed by managing our Key Accounts since 2014. She is inheriting a high-performing sales team from Julius and the team will now be expanding to include Latin America.
Per Marthinsson, Co-Founder & EVP Avinode Americas says: “Saskia’s experience in the US business aviation industry is superb, and we are very lucky to have her as part of our team. Saskia has a great understanding of Avinode’s vision and is able to implement her industry knowledge to lead the team in the region. We are delighted that she has accepted this new role and we look forward to supporting her work.”
We interviewed Saskia so she could share some insights and thoughts about what she’s excited about and what’s next for the Avinode sales team.
First of all, congrats! What’s the new scope of your role? How will your responsibilities differ from your previous position?
So where I was previously responsible for thirteen key accounts, I’m now going to be managing our sales team of five regional managers. It will be a role where I am responsible for all of the Americas, so the U.S. and Canada but also including Latin America. The focus will be to make sure that the team has all the tools that they need to be successful and making sure that our members continue to be successful.
What is a key piece of wisdom that you operate by in your daily work and life in general?
I would say, in my life, I have always seen that “the world is your oyster.” I grew up in Holland, went to college in Holland, and then I had the opportunity to do internships in both South Africa and America. So I see the world as relatively small. You can go anywhere you want, you can push yourself to do anything you want to do. I’d say “the world is your oyster” is my motivation, but it’s also something I want other people to believe in. You set your mind to something and you can make it happen, anywhere in the world. Plus, oysters are delicious.
What are some things that make Avinode a special company to work for, that has prompted you to stay for 6 years?
Avinode has allowed me to grow as a person by honing my business acumen. It’s a young, innovative company with a very strong company culture. We value everyone that works here, everyone is heard. The company culture is one of the things that has kept me here for six years and counting.
What are some of the big goals do you look forward to tackling?
I would say one of the biggest things on our minds is customer service, it’s very important for us. Avinode is seen in the industry, as having consistently excellent customer service. When you call Avinode, there’s always someone who answers, or who tries to get back to you as soon as possible. We will continue to strengthen this in 2018.
In terms of growth, in 2017 we’ve expanded our market extensively. The number of requests from U.S. buyers to sellers, compared to last year, has gone up 100%. We want to continue the growth that we’ve seen in the system, to continue to grow the number of requests for aircraft. That will be the main focus for 2018, in addition to making sure that our customers continue to experience the value of Avinode.
When it comes to Noder team building contests, like go-karting, golf tournaments, etc. where do you fall on the spectrum of (friendly) competition?
I’d say I’m definitely competitive. I would want to win. On a scale of 1 to 5, with 5 being extremely competitive, like fighting for it till blood is drawn, I would probably be like a 4.5. Just in our company culture there are extremely competitive people and if I compare myself with them, I would say I’m a little less. But I want to win, I want to win. I will find every way possible to win.
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