Annemartijn Koning: Journey to Catalyze
Annemartijn Koning is a member of the Project Management team, where she works as Business Developer Project Management Services. In this article we learn more about Annemartijn’s journey to Catalyze, and her role in connecting our project management and science communication expertise to large multi-national research and innovation projects.
Patient point-of-care: Developing in healthcare
Annemartijn grew up with the aspiration to be a doctor, until later realizing her ambition was actually to take a different role, where she could more involved with patients and able to give them a greater level of care. Resultantly, this led to Annemartijn’s decision to train as a nurse.
“As a person, I was and am interested in the well-being of people around me. I wanted to be close to the patients and care for them in a meaningful way.”
Consequently, she began her healthcare journey with a nursing education, at the Hoge School Utrecht. After gaining an understanding of the profession from her studies, Annemartijn worked as a youth nurse at the GGD, before transferring to Erasmus University Rotterdam to complete a premaster Health Sciences, and a Master’s degree in Healthcare Management.
Annemartijn recalls, “While working as a nurse I enjoyed the contact with the patients and doctors, but I always wanted to do more. A small gesture, a smile, or a chat in the morning instead of rushing the nursing procedures so you are done on time. If I could cheer up someone by simply walking a bit faster to get them a ‘real’ coffee instead of a hospital coffee, I would definitely do it.”
She continues, “After completing my master’s I started at Roche Diagnostics as an Account Manager Point of Care solutions. I worked with a lot of different stakeholders in healthcare, not only clinical chemists but also lab and ward managers, nurses, General Practitioners, and pharmacists.”
Experiences in healthcare
Reflecting on her varied roles and experiences, Annemartijn shares her belief in the importance of placing more focus on prevention in healthcare:
“My personal belief is that the change in healthcare has to start with the people at home, we know that they will be patients in the future. But can we prevent people from getting sick, screen them to reduce the cardiovascular risks, or reduce the use of medicine so that people will have fewer side effects?
“Healthcare in the Netherlands is actually of extremely high quality, I am proud of working in healthcare in the Netherlands. It is such a small country but has had an enormous impact on innovation in this field across the whole world.”
Joining Catalyze to make impact
With an eye to making an impact in healthcare and sustainability, Annemartijn joined Catalyze as Business Developer Project Management Services.
“It is different from the company where I came from, a large company that has affiliates all over the world, to an Amsterdam-based company with a lot of business throughout the EU. Decisions are made quickly and the pace is high, I love being involved in so many innovative ideas at the same time.”
In her new role she hit the ground running, finding an immediate click with the company culture:
“Catalyze is an extremely open and transparent company. In my first days, I met so many people with a sincere interest in who you are and what you will be doing within Catalyze. I have learned a lot about the funding systems in the EU, where the market is expanding and it seems that there is never a dull moment at the office in Amsterdam.”
Strategic focus: connecting multi-national EU innovation projects to management expertise
Across life sciences & health and green & sustainability sectors, Annemartijn identifies recently awarded or yet-to-start EU projects and establishes how her team can best support their success.
Annemartijn enthuses, “In project management, you are involved in a lot of different [grant] programs, that is why you see different kinds of innovations as well. You can grow together with a company, and support them as they progress throughout the innovation lifecycle, from an early idea all the way to market.”
Annemartijn finishes, “That is what is so interesting about my function. Instead of focusing on the laboratory, I can now see the huge variety of innovations in health care and sustainability. I truly believe that we as Catalyze Group can make an impact on healthcare and environmental challenges. It makes me proud to see one of our clients on the news, or see the potential of some projects that we work on together.”
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