For whom is the award intended?

Candidates for the Young Captain Award are young men and women who stand out in their working environment. They are innovative in their style of leadership and work on the basis of a wide, internationally-oriented vision. They have a desire to make active and targeted contributions from their position towards a sustainable society. These are people of whom their business enterprise has great expectations.

The criteria for nominating a candidate

Below you will find the guidelines for nominating candidates. Don't hesitate to contact us if you are unclear about anything. Candidates can be nominated directly online.

Companies profile – which companies are likely to nominate a candidate

  • Dutch companies with a minimum turnover of 250 million euro
  • Companies with a clear growth potential to reach that minimum in the near future
  • Stock listed or not
  • Leading family owned companies
  • Foreign companies with a significant presence in the Netherlands
  • Companies are restricted to one nominee

Ideal candidate profile

The ideal nominee for the Young Captain Award is someone who is thought to have the potential to reach the BoD/Exec Board in the coming five to ten years, depending on the size of the company. He or she has shown to be able to build bridges within and outside the organization and to include socio-economic insights in their chosen strategy. They will have strong communicative skills, a well-developed personality and a proven impact in their organization. More particularly, they will:

  • Have a track record in a managerial position
    Leads a major business unit, operating company or geographical region and is in the sub-top of the company. Stands-out amongst others/peers.
  • Interact directly with top management
    Reports to the top management, or has frequent interaction with the top management, or operates at the level of a manager of a mid-sized company.
  • Have international experience
    Has managed an international team or operated in an international context, with experience of a variety of cultures. They think in an international context.
  • Have a high level of social engagement
    The nominee has a genuine interest in social issues and plays an active role in society.
  • Be younger than 40
    Is not older than 39 when nominated.
  • Be fluent in Dutch
    The nominee has a thorough command of the Dutch language and is preferably Dutch or embedded in Dutch culture and society.

The candidate’s critical leadership capabilities

  • Driving results
    a young captain should at least work to exceed set goals, seizing opportunities to push the envelope. Preferably, they make improvements by seeking to improve processes and implement best-in-class solutions, raising quality and productivity in a calculated way.
  • Strategic thinking
    the nominee has to be a clear visionary, who is at the same time able to communicate and translate the vision into action. Preferably, they propose new directions for the business, challenging assumptions and thinking 3-5 years ahead into the next business cycle. More particularly, they understand the impact of technology and the digital world on their business and can translate these into business opportunities.
  • Leading change
    a young captain should at least advocate  new directions by communicating changes with a clear rationale and appeal. Preferably, they are able to influence the organization for change by creating change leaders. They also involve key influencers designing and implementating the change initiative, and they achieve buy-in by tailoring their efforts to the individual and/or group. They are able to build (digital) capabilities and adapt the team/organization to respond to external challenges.
  • Leading people
    a young captain inspires people, is value driven, challenges and supports. He/she listens, collaborates and openly debates with the team in order to manage projects  and is an inspiring engager by communicating a long-term direction. He/she values the input of different generations. The nominee is able to attract and retain millennials.
  • Collaborating and influencing
    A young captain can effectively collaborate with a group, adopting a genuine give-and-take approach, where both parties are on an equal footing and decisions are shared. In doing so the nominee should be able to identify and to meet key players and stakeholders and shape common ground. This means engaging in a dialogue to reach a final conclusion, compromising in the interest of results as necessary.

The selection procedure is in the hands of an expert jury and takes place in stages.