Faces behind Summa: Meet Hendrik, Summa's eternal sunshine

Faces Behind Summa was created to give you a sneak peak of Summa behind the scenes. It is the people/faces behind Summa, who helped Summa become the thriving, growing company it is today. With their infinite enthusiasm and passion, Summa is able to make forward movements each day.

Meet Hendrik, Summa’s eternal sunshine!

Hendrik is known to be Summa’s eternal sunshine. He knows every single employee and manager by name and greets every single one of them personally, every single morning.  This truly works infectiously on people because how can you start the day better than with someone greeting you warmly and sincerely when you enter the working place or office. 


My name is Hendrik and I am a proud assembler at Summa.

Even though I feel like 40, my biological clock ticks at 60. I’m happily married and have been blessed with 4 beautiful children. I live in Bredene, which is a city near the Belgian coastline at about 20 km from Gistel.  In my spare time, I love to play pool. Officially I’m retired as I started to work when I was 14 years old.  However, I decided to add a few more years to my career as I’m enjoying myself at work and I still don’t feel up to retire just yet.

My very first job, when I was 14, was as a labourer in a food factory in Ostend.  I used to earn 60 cents per hour there. After I worked there for a few years, I started working at Schlegel, a textile company, located right next door to Summa.  Unfortunately, the Schlegel factory started to cope with the economic crisis, resulting in lots of redundancies.  It wasn’t until a colleague of mine told me about vacancies at Summa that I decided to apply for a job there.   So, after having worked for a good 36 years at Schlegel I started a new challenge at Summa, where I’m employed for about 5 years now.  Who could have thought the job I was looking for was located right next door!

At Summa, I work as an assembler of the S Class 2 roll cutters and the F1612 flatbed finishing systems. Assembling parts and putting machines together requires full concentration at all times.  You can’t slack off, not even for a minute or you’ll end up with a machine (part), which doesn’t meet the high Summa quality requirements. So yes, I take full pride in what I do as an assembler and will keep performing my job with the necessary seriousness and enthusiasm at all times.

But all this comes easily to me because I simply love my job.  There’s not a day that I dread to go to work.  I always get up full of energy and eagerness to start the day at work.  I’m what they call an early bird and you know what they say: Early birds get the worm!  I arrive at work at 7 in the morning and start to work immediately.  I’m a ‘Jack of all trades’, so I’m never too shy to try something new, to help where I can.  This keeps the job challenging and it also ensures my days at Summa are filled up nicely. And time really does fly when you’re having fun!

As I’m one of the first employees to start this early in the mornings, little at a time I see my other colleagues dripping into the company, one by one. The first thing I do is greet them by name and wish them a good day. My parents were very hard workers and I remember they used to say a friendly word never harmed anyone. So, to me, it comes very naturally to greet people, to be kind to them.  I believe people tend to be rather antisocial in these times of social media abundance. Even in the pub, you don't see people talk to each other anymore.  They are all too occupied with their mobile phones. But even then I would go up to them and start a conversation.

During the 5 years I work at Summa I think I built up a good relationship with colleagues and employers.  I love my job and my Summa colleagues truly have become a kind of family to me. It simply is the ideal occupation for me to do before I retire." 

We believe everyone should have their own “Hendrik” at work. He is a delight as a co-worker and Summa’s eternal sunshine. We, at Summa, thank Hendrik for his kind morning greetings and his earnest hard work.

If you are a “Hendrik” yourself or if you want to work with people just like him, seize the opportunity now! Brighten up Summa’s workplace even more with your enthusiasm and passion. Visit jobs.summa.eu and find the ideal occupation for you!