Why work in the travel industry, Jolanda?
When I was a little girl, my dream was to become a flight attendant. (laughs) Against all odds, I kept my dream alive and studied tourism. After graduation, I went looking for work as a travel agent and never looked back.
How did you did you come to work for Amadeus?
I started out as a travel agent in 1991, then I found work as Account Manager E-commerce at a travel agency. At Amadeus, I was a Product Manager first, and now I’m Sales Engineer Corporate IT. I’ve always kept on challenging myself. And that philosophy matched perfectly with Amadeus. They’ve offered me plenty of opportunities to grow as a person and to develop my career. For that, I will always be grateful.
What does your job consist of?
As a Sales Engineer Corporate IT, I help my team sell Amadeus solutions to travel agencies and corporations. Our team, in particular, focuses on Amadeus cytric and Mobile Messenger. Nowadays duty of care is becoming more and more important, so a lot of companies want to combine both tools.
My individual role? Give technical support to the sales team and meet with clients to provide technical expertise and arrange live demos.
What is your all-time favourite travel destination?
I love large cities with gorgeous nature close by, like Vancouver or Seattle. It really is the best of both worlds. Generally, I believe that for every stage in life, there’s a different type of travel. When I was young, for instance, I made some amazing, far-away journeys to Indonesia, Thailand and the Caribbean. All without a care in the world.
Without warning, you’re in a serious relationship or you have professional responsibilities and you gravitate towards city trips. The final stage occurs when you have a kid. Suddenly, camping close to home doesn’t seem so bad. (laughs)
Have you planned your next vacation?
Not yet. But we do still have an important journey to make: Suriname. My husband is from Suriname and, now that our kids are older, we have the freedom to explore his cultural heritage. It’s just so fascinating and, for us, personally meaningful.
I always try to take in some of the local history before I go somewhere. Without historical context, you just can’t really understand a place. The past, the present and the future: it’s all interconnected. Some people don’t expect that perspective from me.
Why is that? Because you’re not the typical historian?
Maybe because, in general, I’m a happy person who laughs a lot and tries to move forward at all times? For some reason, people think history has to be boring. I don’t agree with that at all. We have to try and gather as much knowledge as possible and show some interest in the world around us, right?
Who do you want to sit down next time?
I’m thinking of a colleague who deserves a little more attention for the terrific work she does: Sofie Vandenbroeck.
Care to link up?Find Jolanda Scholten on LinkedIn here.
Sales Engineer Corporate IT