Prelude – How DLR started

It is 8 April 2005 when Reinier Geradts signed the register at the Chamber of Commerce to establish DLR Adviesgroep BV. The ‘group’ consisted of one person at that time and was housed in his study in his former hometown Hellevoetsluis. The same place that, fours years before, he had spent many hours finishing his business studies qualification and worked on his last project for his last employer ThyssenKrupp Liften. And it was also where he had spent until deep in the night arranging a piece for his choir.

Interlude – What happened before

If you know Reinier well, you know that he was destined to be an organist/pianist/conductor. “In 1984, I started studying ‘Choir management’ at the conservatory in Rotterdam whilst still working for Schindler Liften in Den haag. As well as that, I also took lessons in organ and piano. What I learned from this had to do with finding harmony, balance, recognition of dissonance and, of course, leadership. Sitting behind an enormous church organ is indescribable, but also brings responsibility. From small to large and powerful. Supporting when asked and decisive when necessary. The conductor, as leader of several choirs, has the same experience. From small (youth and small groups) to large (adults and large choirs). During rehearsals, I was guiding and supportive and in the concerts directive and decisive. Working toward the climax is a fantastic experience for both choir and conductor,”

The choice to continue working for Schindler, and not to continue building a professional career in music, seemed illogical. But management and organisation closely reflect being a choir conductor. True ‘teckies’ are just as passionate about their work as choir members. With regard to elevator and escalator technicians, they are one of a kind, crazy about their product. Reinier is convinced that the branch needs to be economical with its professionals. Not only because installations that are made these days are technically so good that they have a long lifespan, but also because the increase in new elevator and escalator specialists has been declining for years.

“I think that it is important to contribute to the branch where I have grown as a professional. I think that we do not look ahead enough and do not work together on the solutions for tomorrow. The word ‘collaboration’ still has a negative feel. But, if has been done well, we should have learned from it and then we would definitely collaborate. By choosing a position between the installer and the client, we try to be the binding factor that keeps all parties awake.”

Postlude – Our message is not about technology

Whether his musical background or moreover his work as a conductor have
added to DLR’s success, is an unnecessary question. How Reinier steers his company, is how he is also there for his colleagues. There is no time for vague directions during a concert. It needs to be crystal clear if you want something to happen now.

“This clarity is unmissable in our field as well. Our ultimate goal is not elevators or escalators or automatic doors and façade maintenance installations, No, our work concerns millions of people who need to be able to travel in and through
buildings safely. You can make life difficult in this regard, but then what you want to happen will not.

And however technical our work is, it is also important to remember whom we are doing it for and with whom. That is why our message is about people. About safe, trustworthy, sustainable client relations and what we strive to achieve in everything we do, collaboration and a healthy balance between people, technology and commerce.” 

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