A conversation with Klaas Ariaans from ABM Amro on 6 years self-organization with 3.500 people

In this episode, we delve into a compelling conversation with Klaas Ariaans, the Director of Consumer Clients at ABN AMRO. At the helm of the 3.500 employee office organization within the bank, Klaas oversees a division undergoing rapid evolution. He spearheaded two pivotal transformations: firstly, through Personal Banking, digital interactions have taken on a deeply personalized dimension. Secondly, we’ve eliminated management by an astonishing 95%, ushering in a new era of self-organization. Join us as we distill lessons from six years of digital and cultural metamorphosis into a captivating 45-minute dialogue.

Introducing Klaas

The trajectory of Klaas’ career, from starting as a young clerk at ABM Amro to ascending to the leadership of Consumer Clients Netherlands, profoundly influenced the executive he later became and the decisions he made. Along the way, he encountered various types of bosses, some inspiring, others not so much. These experiences proved invaluable, shaping his approach to leadership and decision-making.

One particularly memorable experience occurred during the early days: a boss who favored surprise visits and insisted on immaculate offices and desks. Klaas vividly recalls the orchestrated efforts to create a façade of order before his arrival. Despite his aloof demeanor, he couldn’t help but ponder whether this boss was aware of the charade. This underscored for Klaas the importance of genuine connection and engagement with the team.

Consumer Clients

Beetroot is a Swedish-Ukrainian IT company that strives for sustainable software development and desires to be a positive influence in society. Beetroot engages more than 440 people in it’s Ukrainian and Swedish ecosystem, comprising R&D offices in two countries and running a network of Beetroot Academy IT schools in 17 Ukrainian cities.

Topics we discuss

  • Unleashing the Potential of an Almost Impossible Dream
  • Incremental Progress or Big Bang Transformation: Which Path to Choose?
  • Your Customer as Your Greatest Ally
  • The Vital Role of Clear Team Frameworks in Driving Self-Organization
  • The Remarkable Achievements of AMB Amro’s Consumer Clients Division
  • And more

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About Unbossers Podcast

This show and everything else we Unbossers do is created by and for change makers for human organizations. Our goal is to inspire and educate as many people as possible on how to combine the pursuit of business success with care for humanity in a way that benefits all stakeholders of your organization. We talk with thought leaders and experts about the mindsets, skills, tools, processes and systems that turn business mambo jambo buzzwords like employee empowerment, customer centricity, agility and intrapreneurship into daily operational reality.


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