Influencer Angelo Martes

Angelo, could you share with us some information about your family life?
I was born in Curaçao. I am happily married and I have a daughter and a son. I have 2 other siblings and my parents have been very instrumental in letting me become the person I am today. They have always trusted me, giving me the freedom to make my own decisions, for example, this trust and freedom, basically allowed me to find my way in life. The moment I decided to go to Holland for my studies and started at the University of Twente, without a scholarship, my parents paid 100 % for a full year of my studies and stay in Holland. But in my career back in Curaçao, my wife and children have always been very supportive and I am very grateful for all the support I got and still get each and every day.

Could you share something about any other aspect of your educational background and your experiences?
I have done different jobs in my career, I have done consultancy work for Kodela, WEB at Bonaire, and Setel NV for a while at the initial stage of my career. I also had the opportunity to work at ALM initially as an educational advisor, as part of the conditions that were required at that point in time by KABNA to be fulfilled as part of a Multi-Year Educational Plan for the ALM. They needed an educational expert and as I grew in the organization of ALM, I became the action director HRM of ALM at a certain point in time.

I had also served from a professional point of view as a secretary/advisor on the cabinet of a former Minister of Education, and later on moved to the private sector and became a member of the management of  DOC-opleidingen en trainingen with the main task to transform and re-organize the educational division into a more professional institute.

Than I was approached by the President of the Board of ALM and the President & CEO to become the HR director in a phase where the ALM was going through a big turn-around. As part of my responsibilities I was the chief negotiator with unions on behalf of ALM. After the ALM I moved on and started at the META Corporation, which started to develop the Renaissance Curaçao, where I became the director of HR being in charge among other tasks of the development of an HR department for Renaissance. I have been working here since 1-1-2005.

Regarding specifically my educational background and experiences, I have studied at the University of Twente, Applied Educational Science and Technology.  In addition, at the Faculty of Management at the University of Twente I have completed subjects in the area of Management and Organization. This has expanded my scope a lot. When I started my career, I started as a consultant working on projects to explore the market.

You are the HR director of Renaissance Hotel. How the HR-policy of Renaissance has evolved over the years?
The human being has always been the center of my attention, as I have learned to look at what talent fits what position in the organizations I am involved in. Once we have appointed the right person in the right position, via training and development we work so that they can meet the standards. To open the casino for example we recruited at first a team of casino green dealers with no prior experience as casino dealers. We have done the same in other hotel areas where we needed staff. The most important requirement to recruit right employees was the service mindset. If the person has a service mindset and attitude, we will develop their skills later on.

When Renaissance Curaçao was taken over by Wind Creek Hospitality in October 2017, there was an extra dimension added to the Human Resource Development policy at now Renaissance Wind Creek Curaçao. Employee Assistance Program (Psychological support to all team members and their family when necessary) was implemented and the position of Employee Relations Specialist was introduced. There was an extra dimension also added to the leadership development within the organization with the support from Lapin International.

What are the challenges that you are dealing with? And how are you dealing with these different challenges you confront?
One of the challenges we confront is the scarcity of good employees in the labor market. This way we engage in innovative recruitment policies, via our recruitment channels, social media and vast networks at the different educational institutes.  

We detect the talents and try to recruit/ hire the right team members. This is only one part of the coin, we also do our max to retain our team members once we have recruited them by providing them good leadership, guidance, development and training and a good package of employment benefits. Personal development and leadership development of each of our team members is key. We also offer an extensive support system for our employees and their family members, called Employee Assistance Program (EAP) as mentioned before. This is a service Wind Creek Hospitality offers to all team members of their properties around the world. EAP consists of a team of local psychologists that support team members and their families psychologically, with all expenses covered by the company. Focus is on attention and caring for our team members. This enhances our retainment of team members and enhances the productivity. Wind Creek Hospitality kept all employees on the payroll during the lockdown because of the Covid pandemic. This is another illustration of the depth of our HR policy.

What is your BIG WHY or driving motivation to be who you are right now and do what you are doing now?
It is the caring I have for my fellow human being. Everyone needs to be okay, and I want to see them evolve, grow and be successful. I have always had this trait. My father was also an HR person. This drives me. Fact is there are no bad employees, only bad leaders. The effectiveness of employees is a result of their leadership. All team members have something positive we have to tap into.

What are your plans for the coming years, let us say 5 years from now?
The further development of my team, sharing experience so that they continue to grow and evolve their knowledge and skill levels.

Do you use your inner voice to evaluate when dilemmas show up? How does that work for you?
For me, it is of vital importance to self-reflect on the “above average” complex issues. This can be when I am in my garden or any other place, that isn’t in my work environment.

How are you trying also to keep up with your knowledge and skill levels?
I have multiple forms to do this. I read a lot, attending seminars, workshops and conferences. Also I follow messages that come from our networks, via my contacts, from meetings I have, etc.

What are your strengths?
My dedication and passion to what I am doing, my determination, my flexibility, the speed  that I deal with issues, and my diplomacy.

Do you have other hobbies or interests that you are also passionate about?
Fitness, reading and gardening are the main things.

How would you describe Angelo in one word or one sentence?
Sincere, dedicated, committed and determined.

Who are the persons that have inspired you the most in your career?
In my personal life, that would be my father, the way he dealt with other people in such a caring manner. From him, I learned diplomacy and networking.

In my career: There are three important persons, including Harold Arends ex-psychologist. I have learned a lot from Harold Arends who was key in my  personal development.

Nelson Navarro, my good friend, and mentor.

Eduardo de Veer from whom I have learned a lot of having been close to.

What was a defining moment in your life?
The moment I went to Holland for my studies. Originally, I had plans to work and make money. My father arranged for me to meet a student friend of mine who was already in Holland for his studies convincing me to put money making aside and go to study which is a sacrifice that will pay off which is absolutely true.  As I had never been to Holland, that moment of stepping in an airplane to go to Holland, was a defining moment. 

What would you want your Loved Ones, family, friends, and others to say about you let’s say 20 years from now?
They would say that I was a good caretaker for all in my circle of influence, both privately and in general. I was part of the success story of many.

What makes you stay optimistic about the future of Curaçao as we are in the middle of a worldwide pandemic, and recession, and in the middle of growing environmental challenges because of the global warming consequences?
Curaçao has so much potential. I see every day how well we perform within our business, and this fills me with optimism for the future. We have talent, and we have good people on the island.

In general, I would hope we would collaborate and support each other more. We would achieve so much more, instead of having a mentality where we fight each other. We need to change this mentality. This change start with each of us how we guide our children the importance of sharing and supporting each other and not being self-centered.

Is there anything else that you would like to add?
I am grateful for the opportunity. This is a good cause. What you are doing sheds light on hope and a better future for us all. Keep it up with this good work.

One of the 250 Influencers of Curaçao

Angelo Martes, is a dedicated, sincere, flexible, determined, empathetic, caretaking, diplomatic professional who as a Director of HR Renaissance Wind Creek Curaçao, swiftly deals with issues at hand. Being raised based on two principles, “trust and freedom”, allowed him to find his way in life and taking his own decisions regarding his future. Going through a career with multiple facets and holding different positions as a consultant up to a Director’s position at a company with hundreds of employees, formed him as a multi-faceted professional. Until he finally ended up at Renaissance Curaçao in 2005, a Hotel & Casino that is “employees centered”. At Renaissance, they not only recruit the best available local talents through innovative recruitment policies and networks, but they also aim to retain this talent, through a package of benefits for workers and their families. After Wind Creek Hospitality took over Renaissance Curaçao in 2017, the emphasis on Human Resource development was turned on a notch. They recruit people with a service mindset and the right attitude, as Renaissance teaches them the needed skills later on and Angelo oversees all aspects of Human Resources as the Director of HR. For all this and a lifelong learning mindset, we consider Angelo one of the 250 Influence on the island, representing the “Human Resources”-sector.
Look at the list of the Influencers we have interviewed or reported on, up to now.

The goal of the core group of Share2Uplift for 2022

The goal of the Share2Uplift movement is to: “Identify 250 leaders from all walks of life to connect, align and create impactful changes in all walks of life, which includes intergenerational collaboration by the end of 2022.” We will use interviewing Influencers, meet-and-greet events, “train-the-trainers”-programs on “Emotional Mastery” and “Intentionality “as national intervention strategies, to reach this goal on top of our goal to scale up the possibilities to connect, align and create impact via a virtual platform. We believe that by collaborating with Miguel Goede on the virtual Vision 2030 platform, we will accelerate the possibilities to connect the diaspora and others elsewhere in the world and on the island willing to constructively create impactful changes in Curaçao, to join.

As Share2Uplift, we are fully trying to align with this thinking of Center for Curriculum Redesign to promote this agenda in our educational systems and workplace. So, in that sense, we fully support any initiative to make our educational system 21st-century proof.

Share2Uplift aligners are those that:
– Create an inspiring vision of the future;
– Motivate and inspire people to engage with that vision;
– Manage the delivery of the vision;
– Coach and build a team, so that it is more effective at achieving the vision. These criteria are now being polished.

We also consider these 5 values the most important ones for Share2Uplift aligners. They are:

• Peace from within;
• Compassion;
• Respectfulness;
• Integrity;
• Responsibility.

As we will progress towards this goal, we will update you on the progress.

This week we will share some short videos on Simon Sinek videos on “Leadership”. We will upload one of these videos every day on our page.

The MOST Self-Destructive Habit | Simon Sinek – YouTube

Be a Better Leader | Simon Sinek – YouTube

The Art of Listening | Simon Sinek – YouTube

Earning Trust with Dignity – YouTube

Achieving psychological safety – YouTube

The Price of Finite Thinking – YouTube

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