"I don’t plan on ever leaving"

December 19, 2022

It's hard to imagine how different Cristian's life was a year and a half ago. The 23-year-old from Haaksbergen felt frustrated, labeled a 'person with a distance to the labour market'. But everything changed when he was invited to try out something different, in the supply chain at Thales.

As a child, Cristian had trouble learning. He got told at an early age: “You are not going to get any diplomas”. He eventually tried out a more hands-on, practical form of education where he does a lot of internships, but continued to encounter difficulties. As he puts it himself: “At the internship companies where I liked working, they didn't have a place for me, and where I didn't like it, they did have a place”.

Cristian's father watches as his son becomes increasingly unhappy and asks whether Thales, where he works himself, has room for him. After a few talks, it is decided that Cristian can do a trial period of six months in the logistics center in the GCC-PCB, where printed circuit boards are made. His main task will be packaging printed circuit boards and preparing them for the next step in the production process. Every printed circuit board starts and ends with him. Cristian works under the supervision of Willy ten Bosker. That turned out to be a true match.

After just one month, Cristian already knows that he never wants to leave again. Willy and Cristian get along great, share the same humour and can talk well with each other. Not only does Willy teach him everything about the job, but he also teaches Cristian how to deal with certain situations and emotions that come with it. “I finally found a place where I could be myself, and went home happy every day.” At that time, Willy still had 1.5 years to go until his retirement and now that things were going so well, everything is aimed at Cristian taking over his work.

“It made me look forward to the future with a happy heart. I have often wondered where I would end up without a degree, was afraid this would be behind the assembly line. With Willy's help, I started to see work and my life differently and I am really grateful to him and Thales for that.'

Cristian now runs the GCC PCB warehouse together with colleague Sander. That is going so well that he has just been told by his current manager Martin Gerkes that he will receive a permanent contract. He likes solving problems within Thales the most. Cristian is also very positive about the social aspect and the interaction between colleagues. “I know everyone and get along with everyone. I've never seen such a close-knit team as this."

We do not put people in boxes, we’re a stricktly outside of the box organisation. You are welcome at Thales with or without a labour market disadvantage. Check out and finds out what suits you!