Don't be afraid of large sums of money

Lieke van der Horst, senior portfolio manager commodities


“I feel that I’ve grown enormously both professionally and as a person. When I started at APG as a portfolio manager five years ago, I was thrown in at the deep end. My three experienced team members took me seriously from the word go, and I immediately shared responsibility for the commodities portfolio, which amounts to some 20 billion euros. No question of standing idly by and growing slowly, you have to work on an equal footing straight away. That way, you develop really quickly.


In my position, you mustn't be afraid of large sums of money. You need the courage to take on that responsibility and give your opinion. There's space for that in my team. I’m given the space to speak out and if I or a team member suggest something that turns out not to be a good plan, we discuss it among ourselves. That way we learn from each other, and in the end we make the decision as a team. 

As a portfolio manager, I invest on behalf of our fund clients in various commodities in the energy, metals and agricultural sectors through derivative contracts. We receive a benchmark from the pension funds and our goal as a team is to achieve a better return than the benchmark. That’s how we ultimately achieve the highest possible pension for the pension member. My work never has a dull moment: at APG and in the pension world there's a lot going on just now.


The growth I already see in myself is bound to continue in the future. At APG I’m encouraged to continue to develop both professionally and personally. For example, by attending courses and training sessions. If that helps me in my job, it’s a good thing. That's how I get the best out of myself. The willingness to invest in me gives me the confidence that this working relationship is for the long term.”



The growth I already see in myself is bound to continue in the future.