How does someone with a Portuguese heritage end up in the Netherlands?
In 1975 my parents migrated to the Netherlands with just a few personal belongings. They left their friends and family in Portugal to find a job and start a family in the Netherlands.
All they could rely on were 2 relatives who had moved to the Netherlands a little earlier. They didn’t know the country, they didn’t know the currency, they didn’t know the language. Can you imagine?
Naturally, they had their ups and downs. But they worked hard, and they did everything to make our house feel like a home. They gave my sister and I every opportunity to enjoy a comfortable life in, what became, our home country.
Do you still have family in Portugal?
Of course! Almost all of my aunts, uncles, nephews and, nieces stayed in Portugal. They live all over the country – from the Algarve in the South to Lisbon in the middle. Coincidentally, my husband is from Portugal as well. His family lives more in the North, so Portugal holds no secrets to us.
Where did you work before you started at Amadeus?
I worked at Cygnific, a subsidiary of KLM, for almost 13 years. It was my first full-time job. I started as a customer service representative and worked my way up the ranks until I became a Project Manager.
Throughout the years, I learned how to improve the well-being of my customers, and I continued to professionalize my communication skills. The well-being of our customers is still my #1 priority.
Why did you join Amadeus?
After 13 years at Cygnific, it felt as if I had to leave my comfort zone and start anew. Just when I realized that, a headhunter approached me and introduced me to Amadeus. Even though she did not convince me right then and there, the core values at Amadeus resonated with me.
For example, the company continues to innovate its services to improve the customer experience. That matters to me.
How does a typical day look like at Amadeus?
No two days are the same. (Laughs). One day, I’m having back-to-back meetings in-house. Other days, I’m chasing deadlines with my team or finishing up administrative tasks.
Luckily, my mother taught me how to structure my daily life. When we visited our family in Portugal, she always packed our luggage meticulously and planned well in advance.
Can you describe ‘the perfect meeting’?
The customer’s satisfaction is my #1 priority. I feel great when I can personally add value. I try to do this by helping them evolve.
“You have obtained training on this tool/topic. Why don’t you join this training so you are also able to better/quicker assist your customers?”. Often, the client will respond in a positive way to the recommendations, which always feels rewarding.
Do you have to travel for your job?
Oh, for sure! Almost every other month I visit my colleagues in Brussels. And 5 or 6 times a year I visit our offices in London, Paris, Nice, or Madrid… Now that I hear myself, I seem to stay within the borders of Europe.
Do you still have time to travel around with your family?
There is still so much more to discover! Last year we visited Lago Maggiore in Northern Italy. Let me assure you, the food in Italy is simply outstanding.
Furthermore, the scenery at Lago Maggiore is out of this world; the breathtaking mountain views, the islands… That trip left me with so many beautiful memories. I guess we’ll have to go back soon.
Are there still destinations left on your bucket list?
When I visit a new country, new places always emerge. I used to have a top 2: Japan and Argentina, in that order. Why? They both have a world-renowned cuisine. The grill culture in Argentina is something I’d love to experience first-hand. And Japanese food is, well, something different.
Recently, my husband went on a business trip to Singapore. He was absolutely overwhelmed by its culture. So naturally, my top 2 turned into a top 3.
Who would you like to see sit in this seat next time?
Jesus Medina, our Global Account Manager. He has so many interesting stories to tell! Moreover, he has a passion for chess. You should definitely ask him more about park chess.
Care to link up?Find Dina Salvador on LinkedIn here.