Meet our Member: Giovanni Paolo Goeloe & Viktoria van Poppel-Linhart
by Tribes Inspiring Workplaces, on 20 Jul 2018
At Tribes Eindhoven Airport, we’re meeting Giovanni en Viktoria from Swart Advocaten. We feel immediately at home when we arrive in the south of the country, thanks to the warm welcome we received from the hostesses and these two young, experienced lawyers.
Giovanni, who works as Senior Legal Counsel, explains what he does at Swart Advocaten. ‘I write procedural documents and advise both private individuals and companies on everything in the field of labour and commercial law, because Swart Advocaten is specialized in labour and commercial law. I am mainly concerned with liability law and collection law'. Since we have little knowledge of the world of lawyers, we ask Giovanni how a day at the office looks like for him. ‘This morning I had an intake with a client who is in conflict with one of his suppliers, and this afternoon I am writing a summons for a client from Germany. Furthermore, today I am writing a letter addressed to an opposing party in Los Angeles'. That sounds quite international, and since we are international as well with our workplaces in Germany and Belgium, we are curious! As we ask these Business Nomads about their overseas activities, Giovanni looks at his colleague Viktoria who explains: 'In addition to the Dutch, British and American markets, we also focus on the German market. This applies in particular to people who have labour disputes'. And at that moment we notice Viktoria's German accent. We ask for her story.
In 2015 I have been working at Swart Advocaten for a while and in 2016 I graduated with a master of law degree. I have been working as a legal consultant here since April of this year and I like it a lot! I really enjoy this cozy family team of lawyers'. Familial and cozy, again something that makes us curious. Viktoria continues: 'We are a small company with seven colleagues, which provides a nice atmosphere. Everyone knows each other. We can discuss everything with each other and nobody works on those so-called little islands'.
We want to know more about other USPs of Swart Advocaten. Giovanni continues: ‘Swart advocaten is innovative and modern, and I am referring in particular to our legal webshop, which is completely new in this market. In addition to personal contact, we offer digital contact thanks to this platform, which makes it easier and more accessible to have a lawyer involved’. Viktoria explains how the webshop works: ‘The webshop allows you to buy a specific package. You indicate whether you are an employer or an employee and on what subject you need legal support. Our legal secretary will then decide which lawyer will take on the case. As a client you can track all the exchanges of e-mail that your lawyer is having with other people involved. Everything is completely transparent. In this way, people know very well what we are doing, and therefore where they stand’.
Viktoria and Giovanni have noticed that more and more people are using the webshop to upload their employment contracts. Giovanni explains: ‘People want to know if the terms of employment are beneficial before they sign the agreement. This is something I have never seen before. It only shows how easily and accessible this new way of digital communication is'.
In addition, Swart Advocaten is often involved in conflict management: 'When clients have a conflict, we guide them from the sidelines. As a lawyer, you know, purely thanks to your experience, what can happen in such a conflict and what arguments the other party can use. So it is only very useful for clients to be helped in this way,' says Giovanni.
Ambitious as both are, Viktoria will follow the lawyer training at the court in Den Bosch starting at the end of August. And Giovanni is also looking forward to the coming month. From then on, in addition to his current job, he will share his legal knowledge as a law teacher at the Fontys University of Applied Sciences in Eindhoven.
When we have asked everything we wanted to know about this modern, familial, international law firm, we are still curious why they chose for Tribes Eindhoven Airport. Giovanni says: 'Marco Swart, owner of this law firm, fell for the favourable location and international reputation of this location three years ago. And what we all greatly value ourselves, is the networking opportunities with other companies. Viktoria adds: 'Yes, quite refreshing to not only have other lawyers around you!’ Giovanni fully agrees with her statement. ‘That interaction with other companies is fun and can also be very useful. So when other members of Tribes want to know something about us: we're regularly at the Tribes-bar! Perhaps that's how we all can mean something to each other'. And when we ask them if they can give another example of the community, we feel very proud of the community that now also finds it’s way outside the Tribes building: you can find Marco in the PSV stadium every other week together with other Tribes members!