Team Assembly – Importance of Innovation Dream Team

The last topic of the BlueCallom Podcast, Navigation of Ingenuity, focused on the importance of building an innovation dream team.

To find out more about the innovation team assembly, BlueCallom invited Luuk Houtepen, Director of Strategic Partnerships & Innovation at SThree, as a guest speaker of the fifth BlueCallom podcast episode. 

SThree is a leading international staffing company. They provide specialist contract and permanent recruitment services in the STEM sector. If someone knows what the recruitment process looks like and how to create the best selection of talented candidates for a company, it’s Luuk with his rich experience at the SThree company.

The importance of the Innovation Dream Team Assembly 

Since ideas are created from past experiences it is extremely important to have a diverse team. Why is that so? Providing diversity within your company creates a conducive environment in which employees can learn from and about one another and as a result, we get a comprehensive team that can handle any project. Just like educational background, the possession of soft skills is vital for the organization. 

It is not easy to define what innovation talent is but Luuk describes it as the doers, thinkers who get things done and dare to go for their dreams. They have to be driven by passion, be courageous, creative, collaborative but at the same time with extensive knowledge behind them. Innovation talent can be recognized only if they get the right nurturing and the right foundation to grow. 

Soft skills are becoming more and more important and employers recognized that. Thanks to soft skills one can grow its network, gain confidence and maintain relationships – grow a career. Luuk also mentioned that new management methods lead to having more collaborative skills since they are essential for success in the workplace, and ultimately the company’s success and productivity. For innovative talent, one thing is crucial – believing in the long-term goal which has to be clearly defined to attract the right people. 

From Luuk’s experience, candidates are looking for purpose-driven roles that are not only financially motivated. Once people notice their job really matters and their significant work can only motivate them better. 

A good example of this is a consultancy business where in the past this was one of the most desirable jobs because it offered material benefits: the usage of the company’s car, PC, mobile phone, etc. This was in a way a measure of business success. Luckily this has changed and today most organizations are purpose-driven whose employees are highly engaged and passionate about making a difference.

Career in Innovation

We ask Luuk, what is important to have a successful innovation career? Open-mindedness and broad interest come first on his list. These skills are difficult to train and it gets more challenging if your educational background is old-fashioned – in order to be acknowledged, you must become a specialist. Also, we have to keep in mind that innovation is unpredictable and it doesn’t always mean success. And here is where The 8 Cs of innovation talent come into play: Curious, Courageous, Continuous, Collaborative, Creative, Communicative, Confident, and Connected. 

Recruitment Industry Problems 

Other than the lack of talent available, the other problems SThree company is facing are home office efficiency, online hiring process, legislation regarding the working hours (working in a more flexible way), and legislation in terms of tax obligations, social securities, civil obligations. The positive side is more openness. Countries that were more local-oriented when it comes to recruitment, are now accepting foreign candidates. 

Digital testing of soft skills is very limited and can be helpful in the preselection process but it can also cause a counter-effect: how do you know people are answering honestly? Face-to-Face interviews still offer a higher level of engagement and you can get a better sense of someone’s interpersonal skills. 

Groundbreaking innovation in recruiting industry 

We asked Luuk which groundbreaking innovation would truly impact their business. Here is what is said: having a recruitment organization whose main business is advising not selling with an emphasis on the trusting relationship. 


An innovation dream team is always a diverse team, with different backgrounds and experiences. By bringing different skills, talents, and unique solutions to the table, diverse employees strengthen creativity and innovation. 

There are many benefits of having a diverse team: 

  • superior problem-solving 
  • increase productivity and motivation 
  • attract top talents 
  • Increase profit

If you would like to listen or download the whole episode of the Navigation of Ingenuity podcast with Luuk Houtepen please visit:


Authored by: Tanja Sopcic

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