Parcifal Van Gucht, training to be a business psychologist

11 March 2021

The next generation of business psychologists, testimonial from our trainee

Parcifal Van Gucht is doing his second master’s degree in business psychology. As part of his studies, Parcifal has been doing an apprenticeship at Resolved/ CPM, from September 2020 until March 2021. Now that we have someone working here (on a virtual basis of course) from the next generation, it seemed like an ideal opportunity to ask the business psychologist of the future about plans and expectations. Although Parcifal naturally does not represent everyone from his generation, it still gives us an interesting sneak preview.

About translating the customer's question into the solution

Parcifal Van Gucht: “As students, we are expected to carry out one larger or two smaller projects during our apprenticeship, as well as targeting three learning objectives of our choice. In my case, these are two measurable objectives, namely extending my knowledge of the analysis program R and acquiring a basic knowledge of the programming language Python; also, I particularly wish to know more about how you can translate customers' questions into solutions that you can then present. I am particularly fascinated by the latter. I participate in meetings with customers and see, on the one side, customers with their expertise in their domain and, on the other side, Bernie or Eli (editor's note: respectively Caessens and Lauwers, from Resolved) with their expertise in their domain, and how they come together. It's wonderful to witness the collaboration that emerges. If all goes well, there is mutual trust and respect. The common objective is to find a real solution thanks to a constructive partnership. We have discussed this in our study programme, but it remains academic, this is what it's like in real life and that makes it very interesting.”

On lifelong learning and flexibility and the fact these are evident

Parcifal: “What we think we can add? We are young, of course. And we are motivated. For me, it goes without saying that your whole life is about continuous learning and I'm very willing to do that. One aspect that has remained a focus throughout my studies has been the ability to find solutions, that has really been drummed into us. Other than that, my expectations are not particularly well defined. The future is flexible, coronavirus has made that extra clear.”

About continuous learning and how this makes you realise you still have so much to learn

Parcifal: “I do believe that my fellow students and I are ready for the world of work. However, as far as I'm concerned, I had already decided before the apprenticeship to follow an extra course after my master’s degree, in order to acquire more expertise in data analysis and the connection with psychological components. Bernie is a real master at that. The more I learn, the more I realise there is still so much to learn. My thesis is about artificial intelligence in recruitment and selection, and I realise that AI is actually barely integrated. I still lack the right knowledge for a more exact approach, which is why I don't want to head straight for the employment market. Evidence – in the sense of ‘evidence based’ – is very important in a work domain where human intuition still plays a significant role. It makes data and the ability to provide proof even more important. Furthermore, graduating when coronavirus is still doing the rounds is not exactly what anyone had in mind. So, after this, I will study a little longer.” 

By the apprenticeship mentor

And what does the apprenticeship mentor have to say? That we can be excited about the future:
Bernie Caessens: “What strikes me most about Parcifal is his ability to learn, his eye for detail and his customer focus. He has shown an enormous willingness to learn, and is capable of taking on board complex material in a short time. That is mainly down to Parcifal, of course, but it also shows that the programme focuses on developing problem-solving skills. In fact, I have seen this in Eli as well (Lauwers, colleague at Resolved). Furthermore, and this has a positive impact on the work at Resolved, Parcifal is not shy of the details. In every project, he has asked (some annoying but essential) questions and, as such, he has sometimes exposed details we had managed to conceal. Details which we then tackled, with positive results every time. Finally, I appreciate Parcifal's tremendous customer orientation. The customer is always the focus at Resolved, but we can sometimes lose ourselves in particularly fascinating issues. Parcifal made us aware of that and this has improved our communication with the customer. That aside, Parcifal is also just a pleasant chap, with a passion for science and the profession. Someone who's easy to work with, and who wants to make progress. With guys like him – we now have two of them at Resolved – you can grow and have fun.”





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