As COO and founder of Amsterdam based 2theloo, Almar Holtz oversees the operational execution and implementation of the company’s core values. He provides leadership towards broadening the company’s business development, quality assurance and risk management initiatives. Almar is also in charge of employee recruitment and the company’s overseas expansion as well as the company’s financials.
He is a true executive with a proven managerial track record. Prior to co-founding 2theloo, Almar has been in senior management positions of multiple multinationals, as wells as an entrepreneur. In his last position Almar was based in Johannesburg, South Africa.
What are you working on right now?
We are currently putting all our efforts in expanding 2theloo outside the Netherlands. We have franchised the company in Poland, Spain and Portugal; with many requests from all over the globe. In order for this geographic expansion to succeed, 2theloo’s priority is to continue to be the benchmark for clean and hygienic restrooms. 2theloo’s goal is to become the quality mark for a clean and hygienic restroom. My other priority is to lead 2theloo’s recruitment efforts: attracting, training and retaining the best possible colleagues.
What does your typical day look like?
Starting at 6 am, taking the kids to school on my bike. Emails and conference calls till mid day, and in the afternoon generally I meet for an hour with Eric my business partner to discuss our strategy and current positions. My afternoons are filled with meetings with suppliers, partners and new colleagues. Generally my day finishes around 10 pm.
3 trends that excite you?
– Development and impact of social media
– Improvement of Global Consumer Confidence
How do you bring ideas to life?
It begins with believe. The idea has to excite me. I know an idea is good as soon as it keeps me awake. Then it’s about the team of people. That’s one of the lessons I’ve learned. Everyone in the team should also have an equal share, because I firmly believe that if you can’t share you can’t multiply!
What inspires you?
Lots of things do. People inspire me but also architecture and music.
What is one mistake you’ve made, and what did you learn from it?
You can’t learn unless you make mistakes. One mistake I used to make is to spend too much time on insignificant issues. Today I work following one philosophy ‘’pick your battles!’’ By this I manage my time more effectively so I can spend a bit more time with my kids.
What is one business idea that you’re willing to give away to our readers?
If I had the time I would start a Psychiatry Clinic on Facebook. A place where people can receive professional care in an anonymous environment
What do you read every day, and why?
Apart from yesterday’s results of 2theloo, I always start my day reading the latest news on all online news sites. I firmly believe that by staying on top of the latest news you are always one step ahead.
What is one book and one tool that helps you bring ideas to life?
Good to Great: Why Some Companies Make the Leap… and Others Don’t. A management book by James C Collins. The one tool is a good night’s sleep.
What is your favorite gadget, app or piece of software that helps you every day?
My favorite gadget is my iPad. It has made things so much easier and accessible. My favorite app is without doubt the Facebook app. It makes it so much easier to update 2theloo’s page.
Who would you love to see interviewed on IdeaMensch?
Sir Richard Branson.
Where do you see 2theloo in 2015?
I firmly believe 2theloo will have opened its 300th store by 2015 and people will recognize 2theloo for being clean, hygienic and comfortable restrooms. 2theloo will have stores on all continents by 2015.
What person has inspired you the most?
Probably my grandfather, a true entrepreneur who never gave up. After surviving World War II in the concentration camps his goal in life was to make the world the best place for his descendants. Also, Paul Fentener van Vlissingen has always inspired me.