I amsterdam – 2 months in Amsterdam

Vanessa, Apprentice as Trade Administrator in Wholesale Business, reports on her two months’ work experience in Amsterdam.

Motiv 1So far, I had only been to Amsterdam once during 11th grade while still at school – five days field excursion. During this short time, I had fallen in love with the city head over heels. Back then, we followed a strict programme and visited all tourist attractions that Amsterdam has to offer. This is just what I wanted to do differently during my two months’ work experience. It was my aim to live like a real local. Accordingly, I invested my first money in a bike, months before I hit the city. I took it over from my predecessor Selina, and it waited for me in front of the Showroom.

The showroom – work

Motiv 2

The MARC O’POLO showroom in Amsterdam is close to the centrally located Vondelpark in an old brick building that was used as riding hall in earlier days. It is somewhat secluded and has beautifully high ceilings, large windows and a stone floor. I immediately felt at ease here. During my first week, the showroom was prepared for the imminent order phase: Collection pieces arrived bit by bit and had to be hung on clothes rails or put into cabinets, the presentation tables were decorated and all furniture moved into place. Then the time had come and the order phase began. Up to six clients visited the showroom every day to view the new collection and buy pieces for their stores. All sales conversations were held in Dutch. In the beginning, this was a bit strange for me, but I was quickly able to understand our country neighbours relatively well. After only some weeks, I had memorised the most common words and was able to broadly follow conversations and independently record the orders. After having supported the orders for five weeks, I was given the opportunity to accompany the Area Managers for customer visits during my last week. Thereby, I also got to know Holland outside the big city.

The city – life

Motiv 3What I love most about Amsterdam is all the water in the centre of the city. The city is packed with people sitting in small cafés and restaurants, strolling through the streets or along the canals every day of the week. Just like the locals, I mostly explored the city by bike or foot. Especially in summer, the city has a lot to offer: festivals, markets and outdoor events – whatever you could desire. The Canal Parade was a special highlight: It reminded me of a carnival procession full of colourfully dressed up or barely dressed participants who pass along Amsterdam’s canals in elaborately decorated boats. It is THE event in Amsterdam!


My conclusion

Amsterdam is and will always be one of my favourite cities. Especially in summer, it has so much to offer, it is impossible to get bored. Over the two months, I not only got to know the city but also the tasks of our international sales team. I especially liked the personal contact with clients and being so close to the product. I have learnt a lot and was able to gain experiences that I will benefit from both personally and professionally. I want to thank MARC O’POLO for not only for making this possible but also especially for supporting me.