Marianne de Boer (CEO Aegon Cappital): ‘Leadership is the art of getting real answers’

Aegon is committed to being a good employer. For me, good leadership is definitely part of that. But when are you a good leader? Core qualities for me are: having courage, connecting and above all listening well. This way you make a difference as a leader and really help your organization move forward.

The biggest mistake a manager can make is thinking you know best. Only with information from different sides can you make an informed decision. It’s not the CEO who makes the company, it’s the employees. As a leader, it’s no use surrounding yourself with pumpjacks. After all, you are not looking for the answers you want, you want the real answers. You get that by offering trust and security. This also ensures that your employees come to you with their ideas. dare to have

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Making decisions is part of the CEO position. Back to decisions too. That suits a learning organization. Certainly in large organizations there is quickly the risk that a CEO becomes too far removed from the organization. Clear choices sometimes prove difficult to implement in reality, because operational blockades stand in the way. Does a choice turn out to be wrong? Then you have to dare to turn it back.

If you want people to grow and challenge themselves, you have to compliment them when they perform well. Giving compliments also leaves room for criticism. People need trust and want to be seen. That applies to me just as well. That is why I am looking forward to being able to go to the office more often in the future. More and more I realize how tough the lockdowns and all that working from home has been and how nice it will be to see everyone again.

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Working from home initially benefited productivity. But then that effect faded. People miss the connection and whole days of Teams meetings are hard for many colleagues. I have no desire to control homeworkers. People who are motivated at the office are also motivated at home. If this is not the case, this will automatically appear from the output that employees provide. Only then is it time to make adjustments as a manager. About female leadership

As a female CEO, I am still heavily outnumbered. I think that’s a bad thing. Every board benefits from a good balance between men and women. All studies show that a balanced male-female ratio leads to the best results. I think we should ask ourselves the question: how can we organize work and care in this country on an equal footing? In some companies, the culture will also have to change, which of course includes equal pay.If you work part-time you are not a “part-time prince” or “part-time princess” and if you work full-time you are not a bad father or mother. It’s about making conscious choices. So think in advance about the impact of the choices you make.

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My business ambition is to further grow our Aegon Cappital in the market. My personal mission is to increase pension awareness in the Netherlands. So that people start thinking about their income sooner for later. Do you only do that after your fifties, and do you have a pension deficit? Then you have very little time to solve this problem. So it’s important to think ahead!

About Aegon Cappital

Aegon Cappital is Aegon’s premium pension institution (PPI). We have been active in the pension market since 2012. Aegon Cappital helps you and your employees think ahead when it comes to retirement. We now do this for more than 5,600 satisfied employers and more than 270,000 employees. Also a pension provider who thinks ahead with you? Look at

Future-oriented employership

This is an article from our “Forward-Looking Employability” series, powered by Aegon. As an employer, you want to arrange things well for your employees. Aegon and Business Insider are happy to help you with that. By pointing out obstacles and opportunities in good time. And by offering the right products and services, such as an Aegon Cappital pension plan.

Author: Jobly