Nancy VandeGehuchte lives with an eternal smile and a love for people
- Posted on April 24, 2018
- Estimated reading time 8 minutes
"I’m not a 9 to 5 person, but my weekends are sacred"
After a couple of months, I decided to go back to school to study accountancy. It was tough. Going to school for four nights a week over a three-year period while working a fulltime job during the day wasn’t easy. However, I still feel it was the best decision of my life! Pursuing that accountancy degree allowed me to truly develop my professional skills, and to this day I feel it’s one of my greatest accomplishments.
"Going back to school was the best decision of my life"
As a finance consultant, I’m part of the Managed Services Team. That’s Avanade’s ‘support’ department, meaning we deal with clients in whose companies the Microsoft ERP software (Dynamics AX) is already up and running. In case of any finance-related issues, they will be directed to me. I then assist them to the best of my abilities, and will offer solutions, or even additional training.
My job actually gives me the opportunity to combine my love for IT and bookkeeping, in an international environment to boot. Although I don’t really travel, I work with a lot of international colleagues, from the Netherlands to the US. I might, for instance, help set them up companies abroad. Contrary to what you might expect of people working in IT or finance, most of the time I deal with people, and not with numbers. I’m not stuck behind a desk all day long, which I love. On the other hand, I’m really glad I’m not stuck in the infamous Belgian traffic every day! (laughs) I’m really sociable, and need to interact with others as much as I can.
"I deal with people, not numbers"
It is busy, though. Our department has a lot on its plate. My ambitions therefore lie in training a junior colleague to help us deal with the current workload. I’m really looking forward to handing over some of the knowledge and expertise I’ve been lucky enough to acquire over the years to younger people. I do realize that the profile we’re looking for, i.e. someone with knowledge of both IT and finance, is quite rare. But I’m hopeful we’ll be expanding our team soon.
Apart from my day-to-day tasks as a finance consultant, I’m also involved in a People Advocate’s Session. Recently, a colleague and myself have been organizing these, focusing on a specific topic which concerns all Avanade’s Belgian employees below manager level. We listen, we take notes and we report our findings. The idea behind it is that at Avanade, every employee gets his or her say. In other words: every opinion counts. The best thing about this is: management are actually making changes. It’s incredibly rewarding to play a part in bringing about changes, however small, in our company.
"It’s incredibly rewarding to play a part in changing our company"
What also helps is my unwavering optimism; that keeps me going. I love to laugh, and I’m convinced that’s important in your work environment as well. You simply have to be able to laugh, especially when doing a demanding job.
When it comes to my work-life balance, I believe in working hard during the week, and putting in all the hours necessary from Monday to Friday. I’m not a 9 to 5 person. My weekends, however, are sacred. Even though it’s not always possible, Saturdays and Sundays are to there be spent with my family. At Avanade, a healthy work-life balance is high on the list of priorities. People management has always been important but management actively encourage employees to protect their work-life balance.
"During my ideal weekend, no laptops are allowed!"
Things do get quite hectic with a couple of teenagers and a demanding job, but in order to relax, I love to cook dinner for my friends. I once took a Thai cooking course, and can make some truly outstanding spring rolls. Sushi is another one of my specialties. To get rid of some of my stress, and to work off all of that delicious cooking, I work out. Power training and step aerobics might not be my all-time favorite activities, but my body really craves some exercise after a working day.
"Becoming a single mother and leaving my comfortable job was a leap in the dark, but I’m still incredibly proud of myself for taking that chance"
I live with my boyfriend
Two teenage boys (15 and 17)
My boys and my boyfriend, shopping in Antwerp
Arrogant or negative people
Solving a variety of issues, on a daily basis
I’m really skilled at planning vacations with my family
Combining a fulltime job with school; my plate was pretty full!
A light that makes bird noises and wakes me up with ‘sunshine’ every morning. Does it make getting out of bed any easier? No way!
My favorite band is The XX, and right now I’m listening to the latest Editors album. I also love Motown music, and anything retro really
A nice cup of coffee
Going back to school when I was already working fulltime, the birth of my first child, becoming a single mum
Carpe diem, because you only live once
I finally realized that I have to stop multitasking… it’s not efficient at all
Venice, if you take away the tourists. On my bucket list: exploring the rice fields in Vietnam, Thailand, and New Zealand
I’m not a natural but I still love to cook for friends
I can’t actually think of anything, I’m an open book… Not all of my colleagues might know that I became deaf in one ear seven years ago. And I once had a very narrow escape when a bull on a farm in the South of France attacked me!
We are all so privileged… We should never forget to enjoy the little things