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The Dutch Vietnam

Management Supporter
Vietnam’s Challenge
The Vietnamese business world, governmental and non-governmental
organizations have an increasing demand for well-educated, preferably
English speaking employees. Within 10 years, the current generation of top
and senior managers will retire, and needs to be replaced by capable,
LH Resources
Office @ 62/44
experienced successors. For Vietnam it’s a case of catching up with the Duong So6, P.5,
changing times. In my opinion, we need to focus on three major activities: Go Vap District,
1. consulting the current leaders and top managers regarding the Ho Chi Minh City
development of strategy, organizational design and communication;
2. training the middle managers to ably replace their current leaders; 3rd year, no. 3
3. coaching the young professionals to grow into their new positions.
August 8, 2009
In this new edition of the Dutch Vietnamese Management Supporter we
take a look at various ways Vietnam’s challenge can be dealt with. This magazine was born in
March 2007. It is distributed
Lecturing in Room among my Vietnamese and
V 7.5, location: Dutch business and private
HCMC University
of Industry - North Purpose: to keep them infor-
Central University med about my activities in
(IBA program)
This amazingly attractive
and energetic country has
rapidly conquered my soul,
and become my home away
from home.

Prof. Loek Hopstaken

In this issue:

Vietnam’s Challenge- 1
News from Hopstaken -
Starbucks book 2

Alliance International 3
Training Corporation

Enough control? 4
Following the changing times, I have shifted my
attention from a company website to maintaining my The New Times: sharing 5
LinkedIn-site. Check :
loekhopstaken. I invite you to connect, scan my Standing offer: 6
free lecture
Vietnamese—Dutch network, and read my references.
Contact information 7
Brief resume

Next issue: November 2009

3rd year, no. 3 2

The Dutch Vietnam Management
Resources Supporter
Ho Chi Minh City, August 8, 2009 NEWS from HOPSTAKEN
Dear Reader, Since June 1, 2009 Prof. Hopstaken is appointed
This year may go down in history as the ‘Year of Economic ‘Resident Representative’ of Wittenborg
Truth’. Many, if not most companies, but also governmental and University, The Netherlands (Há Lan). He is now
non-governmental organizations across the globe re-consider authorized by its Director to
and re-shape their strategies. If ‘9-11’ forced us all to take a new  deliver training programs & examinations;
look at the world’s security, the current recession tells us to re-  sign certificates and diploma’s.
think the way we do business. In particular how we deal with This means that participants of the workshops and
money, banks, stocks and investments. The most difficult part is training programs may be awarded with an official
to find out what the workable ideas were in our pre-recession Wittenborg subject certificate. For certain
concepts of strategy, and what were the ‘bad ideas’. And: former programs you can earn credits towards an bachelor
good ideas are now bad ideas. For Vietnam, as a relative new- degree in International Business Administration.
comer on the world market, a positive For details, see page 17-18 of the new catalog.
aspect of this develop-ment is that it
can learn from the successes and
mistakes of others—both nations and
companies. What were they? When
you want to re-think, re-consider and
re-shape your strategy, I invite you to
turn to page 4.
Best regards,
Prof. Loek Hopstaken
PS. To receive my updated catalogue, just
write an email to:

It’s not about the coffee

A Book to Get, to Read, to Apply: food for Vietnamese Managers & Leaders
Airport bookstores are places I like to spend time before or
between flights. Both Amsterdam and Singapore airports have
well-stocked shops. My profession makes me look for the latest
management bestsellers. Recently I bought “It’s Not About The
Coffee”. A strange title, but when I realized this was about Star-
bucks, the famous American chain of coffee bars, I became inte-
rested. I like their frappuccino (when will it be available in Ho Chi
Minh City?). Author Howard Behar played a key role in the world-
wide expansion of Starbucks, back in the 1990ies. He is also an
active promotor of Servant Leadership and his book contains
many fine examples of how to successfully apply its principles.
Mr. Behar uses his personal experiences: the successes, but also
the mistakes, and the lessons he learned. His former boss, Star-
bucks Founder Howard Schultz wrote a foreword, and for the
2009 edition Behar wrote a special new preface called “Leading
Through The Hard Times”, referring to the current recession.
If you wonder, if this book is not about the coffee, what is it about?
The subtitle: “Lessons on Putting People First from a Life at Starbucks.” Get, read & apply it.

I am always doing things I can’t do, that’s how I get to do them.

Pablo Picasso
3rd year, no. 3 3
The Dutch Vietnam Management
Resources Supporter

Alliance: International Training Corporation

One of the challenges of Vietnam is to make sure it uses the
maximum of its human capital. This year alone 700,000 highschool
students graduated, and these weeks appr. 300,000 will enter university.
These are high numbers, but what’s more important: they show that
each year the Vietnamese society is enriched by 100,000’s of educated,
ambitious and talented young people. They will one day soon inherit
their parents’ country. The challenge is to make sure they get a high
quality education, and: to make this new generation of Vietnamese
aware of the new place of Vietnam in the world. Being a Member of the
World Trade Organization has opened more doors and communication
lines than ever. The need for English as second language is higher than
ever, both for studies, and for work. So much has been done, so much
is being done, so much still needs to be done!
As a guest lecturer at several universities in Ho Chi Minh City I have
met many students and teachers. Everyone is aware of the situation: the
need to further improve educational quality, and the simple yet
formidable task to handle the high numbers. In order to do a big job, the best way is to break it down into
smaller jobs. One of the organizations taking up this challenge is Alliance.
Alliance International Training Corporation is a new company. Founder and President is Dr. Ngo-
Anh Clement. Alliance’s 1st objective: to facilitate cooperation between Vietnamese and foreign univers-
ities. 2nd objective: to encourage young people to start their own business—while doing their studies.
Its two main activities:
1. preparing students for an education abroad, by offering preparatory programs and English tuition;
2. offering top students an opportunity to start their own business—coached by professionals.
As Resident Representative of Wittenborg University (The Netherlands) I am looking for a way to
establish a healthy and productive collaboration between Wittenborg and Alliance. To secure the English
tuition and bring up students to the required
levels of TOEFL IBT 70+ or IELTS 6,0, a
collaboration has been set up with UNESCO
Vietnam. On the journey to find out how it
works—the legal procedures, the lot—I meet
many people in ‘Vietnamese situations’. I see
many barriers, but also great allies to help us
conquer them, to realize a worthwhile purpose!
Photo top: with Dr. Ngo-Anh Clement in the Alliance
office, Tan Binh, HCMC.
Photo right: with Dr. Ngo-Anh Clement, Founder and
Director of Alliance, and Dr. Tran Quang Thang, General
Director and President of the Institute of Economy &
Management (IEM), after a meeting at the Center of
Modern Economic Training (CEMT).

Nearly every man who develops an idea works at it up to a point where it looks
impossible, and then gets discouraged. That’s not the place to become discouraged.
Thomas Alva Edison
3rd year, no. 3 4

LH The Dutch Vietnam Management

Resources Supporter

Do you feel you have enough control over your life?

No? Well, you are in good company. Nearly everyone on the planet is dissatisfied with the amount of control over his
or her own life. From the moment we become aware that we are a person, we want to make up our own
mind, decide to go forward, backward, up or down, left, right or center. We pick the fruits of our con-
trol—good or bad. Yet, it’s not always easy. Because everyone wants the same, and we have leaders, ma-
nagers, officials and laws to deal with, being in control can become a tiresome job. And that’s not all.
Think about your neighbourhood, the traffic or the weather. And how about H1N1? Will wearing a mask
and take vitamin C offer sufficient protection? Control requires keen observation, authority and power to
act and even then you may discover that it just slips through your fingers.
To be quite frank, being in control is often impossible. In changing times—and 2009 is a year of chan-
ges—you can sense a feeling of being out of control everywhere. The daily news media tend to emphasize
the negative aspects of the world’s events, the global economy, business, society and people in general. It
seems that good news is no news; bad news is. But the overall feeling as a result of less control is worry,
and sometimes even confusion. For some people the past is certainty: it cannot be changed, and they mis-
takenly believe that “in the old days things were better.” If today’s uncertainties make people uneasy, the
idea of a future draws a blank in most people’s minds. When you’re responsible for an organization or
even a family, you need to look ahead. And imagine what could happen, and what you would do if that hap-
pens. If you don’t prepare, well, life may well take you by surprise—pleasant or unpleasant.
Strategic thinking is the action of taking an integrated view of the organization, and consider its possi-
ble futures. To be able to do this, you need tools. Hopstaken provides them in the workshop Strategic
Thinking. In 2 days the participants become familiar with the use of many strategic thinking tools. After
the workshop you will know what to do next on your road to realizing the vision of your organization.
Get in touch with Ms. Ha Hoai Thu ( / 0903906208) and ask her for
the next opportunity to get trained.

In Rex Hotel, for Training House Vietnam I delivered a 2-day

workshop on Strategic thinking to the managers of several Vietnamese
banks. The participants are now familiar with the use of many tools, such
as Six Thinking Hats, McKinsey’s 7S Model, Mintzberg’s 5 P’s, Con-
tingency Plans, Integrated Organizational Chart and The Power of
Agreements. Tested theory, used in exercises, and then: ACTION!
No one ever attains very eminent success by simply doing what is required of him; it is the amount
and excellence of what is over and above the required, that determines the greatness of ultimate
distinction. (italics by LH) Charles K. Adams
3rd year, no. 3 5
The Dutch Vietnam Management
Resources Supporter

The new times: sharing know-how

Teaching and training is all about sharing knowledge, and then add that little extra called ‘making it
practical’. Using it on the job, in your life. As with many true jewels of knowledge, their use is not limited
to the work place. You can apply them in many different situations. This goes for many technical subjects,
like finance and IT, and even more so for my fields: communication, organization and management. The
story goes that one of the legends in management, Frederick Winslow Taylor, developed his organizational
know-how to help his wife ran her many-children-household. She asked her husband to bring some order.
He did. And now we all use job descriptions, organizational charts and instructions. True or not, fact is
that using Taylor’s tools, supplemented by more tools, I am able to help companies and families to get
organized! Photos: left, after a lecture at North Central University; right, with Mr. Warren Eng, Director of Melior Business School

If money is your hope for independence, you will never have it.
The only real security that a man can have in this world is a
reserve of knowledge, experience and ability. Henry Ford

If you’re still hanging onto a dead dream of yesterday, laying flowers on its
grave by the hour, you cannot be planting the seeds for a new dream to
grow today. Joyce Chapman
3rd year, no. 3 6
The Dutch Vietnam Management Supporter
A theory serves its purpose when it increases someone’s practical MINI-CATALOG
skills. The English say: ‘The proof of the pudding is in the eating’. An overview of Hopstaken services
There is one way to get to know my training style: by experiencing it.
One way of getting this experience is to invite me to deliver a FREE A workshop is a 2-4 day group activity
LECTURE (1-1,5 hours) in your company. You choose the topic. For with a defined purpose, where theory,
ideas, see the ‘mini-catalog’ (right). Three conditions: practical exercise and exchange of
1. the participants should be able to understand English, experiences are the main ingredients.
2. the maximum number is 40, and Areas: HRM, PR, Communication,
and Management.
3. your company provides a projector and screen.  Team Engineering
If you are interested, please let me know. Name the topic and the  Communication
period in which it will be feasible for you and your team to attend the  Commercial Communication
lecture. Then we can start the scheduling.  Public Relations
 Effective Meetings
Till soon!  Organizational Design
Loek Hopstaken For contact information, see page 7.  Intercultural Communication
 Time Management/Efficiency
 Personnel Selection
Hopstaken has delivered services to / with: Consulting
In Vietnam: a.o. Consulting is any specified expert
 Tan Thuan IPC Industrial development activity to help solve a defined
problem. This can take the form of
 HCMC University of Technology MBA program
coaching, but also, conducting a
 RMIT (HCMC campus) BBA program research. By definition, it is tailor
 NorthCentral University BBA program made. Areas: HRM, Strategy, PR.
 Spectra Training & consultancy  Management Coach
 UNESCO / VVCI Workshops, training  Corporate Strategy
 Le & Associates Training & consultancy  Personal Coach
 Training House Vietnam Training & consultancy  Mediation
In The Netherlands, a.o.  Executive Selection
 ING Bank (workshops, seminars) Banking services  In- & External Surveys (360°)
 Philips (workshops) Electronics Seminars
 Heineken (workshops) Brewery A seminar is a 3-4 hour interactive
transference of core know-how, often
 Voerman International (workshops, including practical assignments.
consultancy, coaching, seminars) International relocations
 People Management
 Campagne (workshops, consultancy,  Emotions in the Workplace
coaching, seminars) Advertising, promotion  Strategic Thinking
 Damen Shipyards (consultancy, coaching) Shiprepair wharfs  Business Ethics
 Dutch Delta University (teaching, seminars)IBA—BBA, MBA  The Allround Manager™
 Wittenborg University (teaching, seminars) IBA—BBA, MBA  The Allround
 Royal Van Zanten (workshops, Communicator™
consultancy, seminars) Pot plants, cut flowers  The Soft Skills Program
 WVL Staalbouwers (workshops) Steel construction Investments (ex. VAT)
 G&D Promotions (consultancy, Workshops: US$ 1,200 per team/day.
workshops, coaching, seminars) Billboarding Consulting / Coaching: US$ 90 per hr.
 Eurograss (workshops, consultancy) Lawns; grass seeds Seminars: US$ 500 per seminar
 City of Boarnsterhiem (workshops, (except the ‘Allround’ / Soft Skills
consultancy, coaching) Community organization programs). US$ 250 per lecture.
Train the Trainer: US$ 1,200 per day.
 Metaaldraaijerij Lebrun Metal & steel parts
Contact me for longterm conditions.
 Market Vision Hospitality marketresearch
3rd year, no. 3 7

The Dutch Vietnam Management
Resources Supporter

This newsletter is written & published by Loek Hopstaken.

LH Resources
Office: 62/44 Duong So 6, P. 5, Go Vap District, HCMC
Email: or
Mobile: 090 888 9450
Assistant: Ms. Vo Ngoc Lien Huong
Mobile: 090 888 9451
Website: (under construction)

Loek Hopstaken’s company in The Netherlands:

Hopstaken Bedrijfsadvies.
Address: Gouden Leeuw 628, 1103 KN Amsterdam ZO

Who is Loek Hopstaken?

1951: born in Haarlem, Netherlands
1971: Near & Middle East travels
1972-1975: Amsterdam University
1976-1977: North & South America
1977-1993: career in banking: NCB,
Postgiro, Postbank, NMB Postbank
Group, ING Group, ING Bank
1979-1982: BA studies
1983-1988: project manager
privatization process Postgiro to
Postbank (field: HRM)
1989-1993: project manager
formation NMB Postbank Group;
ING Group (fields: PR and TQM)
1991: founding own company:
Hopstaken Bedrijfsadvies
1993: left ING Bank; started career in
training and consultancy
1996-2000: business club MC
2001: started mediation career
2003-2008: combining training &
consultancy for companies with
teaching at international
management schools (IBA—MBA)
2005 + 2007: appointed Professor
2006: starting to explore the
Vietnamese market
2007: first 3 visits to Vietnam
2008: 4th & 5th extended stays in
Vietnam: lecturing, consulting, sur-
veying, delivering workshops at 2
universities; establishing in HCMC
Appointment to Professor at Wittenborg University of Applied Sciences, The Netherlands 2009: founding of LH Resources
Full cv available.