Former Managing Director of Parkmobile, Esther van der Meer, recently joined us as our COO. Her appointment fits the current growth phase of both Siilo and Prisma, in which we further shape and develop our scale-up strategy for the near future.
Esther has an impressive track record in growth strategies at scale-ups. She held several key positions at Booking.com, Catawiki, and Parkmobile before making the conscious choice to move into healthtech. “Since the pandemic, we’ve experienced once again how crucial good healthcare infrastructure is and how innovation and digitisation are making an impact on the industry,” says Esther.
“Siilo Messenger and Prisma are both strong drivers in how we reorganise cure and care. They provide for safer and faster communication, as well as knowledge-sharing between professionals. This is of such importance, and we’re going to work hard to further engage as many doctors, nurses, healthcare institutions, and organisations in building this new future for healthcare.”
Women in Tech
In addition to Esther’s decisive experience in scaling up young organisations, she adds to the strong female presence in the company. “The male-female ratio within Siilo is about 53⁄47,” says CEO Joost Bruggeman. “We also want to see this balance in leadership positions, because we know from both research and experience that diversity brings our organisation forward. So the choice for Esther as COO was a highly considered one.
“Naturally, it also helped that we clicked well. She immediately reminded me of Dr. Hermien Schreurs, my female role model who was both influential and important during my training as a surgeon. Dr. Schreurs taught me to fight for the patient in a safe, educational environment, which had practically been unheard of at the time in healthcare. Women like her are pioneers that build on trust, and I recognised that same belief and drive in Esther. Esther also matches our start-up energy and enthusiasm, so we’re excited to have her on board to help steer Siilo’s next steps!”
Tasks as COO
Esther explains that she has always pushed hard for women, particular in leadership positions in industries like tech. “I am in favour of a women’s quota as a temporary means to speed up this process. This push is important because outdated norms like the ‘old boys’ club’ always end up slowing down an organisation’s innovation process.
“It’s been known for so long that companies thrive when positions are filled equitably and diversely. Not only is this seen on an execution level, but especially in positions where women actively participate in creating the organisational strategy. That’s where I see a strong task for myself as COO: to recognise the ambitions of women both internally and externally, and to motivate them and help them grow.”