Real communication is only achieved once you understand people's deeper needs.

For over 25 years, Jan worked as a designer and strategist in the communication industry. He worked for large international brands such as Unilever, Nutricia and Philips as well as for SMEs. For both worlds, the product (or service) is central to the entire business. The supply chain is the holy grail and it isn’t until the end of the process that they start looking for a customer to match. This finding and procuring of the customer is the exclusive domain of marketing and sales people. The rest of the company works for the department manager. 


Finding and procuring the customer must then be achieved by (marketing) communication. The world of communication has changed extensively. Internet and social media have had a revolutionary effect on every aspect of the business. The modern customer is bombarded with information and so ignoring stimuli has become second nature. Real communication is only achieved once you understand people's deeper needs. 

Human brain

In a world where everything is constantly changing, there is only one thing that has remained the same: the human brain. It is the result of 150,000 years of evolution and optimised for the hunter-gatherer.  The past 2000 years have had almost no effect on the functioning of our brain. We say what we think, but we do what we feel. First, we subconsciously develop a preference for a product or service and only then do we think of rational arguments. Only recently has it become clearer how this works exactly, as a result of research by scientists such as Daniel Kahneman (behavioural psychologist and winner of the Nobel Prize for Economics) and many others.


Persona Academy

In 2015, Jan founded the Persona Academy and developed a variety of different programmes in order to understand what people think and feel. His approach provides deep insights for every aspect of business.

"I believe systems should help people and not the other way around. 

I believe in motivation through inspiration. "


  • Diploma Design Academy Eindhoven. 

  • 25+ years of experience as a Designer / Strategist. Worked for agencies and clients such as: Philips, Unilever, Nutricia, KNVB and many others

  • Founded the Persona Academy in 2015, a bureau for customer insight and profiling. 

Fun fact

In 2006, Jan and his wife Josée sold all their belongings in order to travel around the world and to live in New Zealand for a while with their two children. After more than a year of adventure, they decided to return to the Netherlands. Here, they bought an old Flemish barn that Jan redesigned as a loft house with a studio.