What is it like to be treasurer of B&R Beurs?

My name is Demi Verloop and I am the Treasurer of the 35th board of B&R Beurs. I joined B&R Beurs during my first year at Erasmus University in 2015 because I was interested in learning more about investing and wanted to meet more students in Rotterdam. I am very happy I made the decision to join 3,5 years ago, as I met so many people who have now become my friends while also gaining investment skills that can be useful in the future. In this interview, I will tell you all about the life of a Treasurer at B&R Beurs!

If you still have some more questions after reading this interview, feel free to contact me at treasurer@bnrbeurs.nl, +31613112759 or simply stop by our office (P-1.074)!

Why did you choose to apply for a board year at B&R Beurs?
Last academic year, I decided to apply for the Introduction Period Committee. This was an amazing time where I learned a lot already and felt very satisfied helping the society grow. At that moment I was determined that I wanted to do more for the society, so I decided to apply for a board year. I wanted to take a gap year between IBA and my master, as I was not completely sure what master I wanted to apply for yet. A board year at B&R Beurs seemed like the perfect way to figure out my path in the future while contributing to the society. Besides that, I was really enjoying my time as a student and in my opinion, I was not ready to start working anytime soon. The position of Treasurer appealed to me, because accounting was my favourite subject during my bachelor and I was considering pursuing a career in accounting. Also, I saw this board year as the perfect opportunity to develop and improve my personal skills.

What are your main tasks as Treasurer?
As a Treasurer you are responsible for the financial health of the society. You need to make sure that there is a good balance between the revenues and the costs. As you are responsible for making sure that the income will flow back to your members you will continuously have to ask yourself: “Can I justify my spending behaviour to our members?’’. This holds that you will have to allocate the society’s resources in the most beneficial way possible. As a treasurer, you need to be able to say ‘no’ when necessary for the sake of the financial state of the society. My main day-to-day tasks are updating the general ledger, creating budgets, paying bills and collecting the money from the members and sponsors.

I am also responsible for two committees this year; the Almanac committee and the Editorial committee. Supervising these committees is totally different from doing my daily tasks as a Treasurer. However, I think these committees make my board year even more fun as they do not evolve around numbers but words instead. I really enjoy working with both committees and it is great to see them working together to create something memorable for the society.

What skills should a good Treasurer possess, in your opinion?
Especially at the beginning of the year, it is important that you do not let others overrule you. You must be able to stand your ground. Everyone has big plans and will ask for more budget. However, as your revenues are quite unsure, it is good to be somewhat conservative at that point. Another important skill of a Treasurer is that you need to have strong communicating skills. Sometimes, you have to make a decision that is not understood by everybody. However, this decision can be necessary from a treasurer’s perspective. Communicating your reasons to your fellow board members for making a certain decision is key. In the end, we all want the best for B&R Beurs.

During a board year, you will have to face some challenges. Can you name a few and tell us how you coped with them?
The first challenge you face as a new board is the introduction period. It is a time where everyone has to fully focus on recruiting new members and making sure that they find an investment group. The work pressure is high, which can be overwhelming sometimes. It is therefore important that you communicate with your fellow board members and make sure you can lean and count on each other. Another challenge is accepting that things do not always turn out to be the way you planned. When you sign up you have a certain perspective of the year ahead and it can be hard accepting that this view will have to be adjusted. I think it is best to not plan too much ahead and accept the fact that you cannot control life to the fullest. It is okay to have expectations but also try to be realistic. Together with your fellow board members, you will overcome the challenges. In the end, the hard work will pay off.

What has been the most memorable experience for you so far?
Even though the Introduction Period was exhausting, I think this period was one of the most memorable experiences so far. It is great to meet new people and to see that the newest B&R Beurs members find their place within the society. Also, I think the B&R Beurs social drinks are always fun to go to. There are many investment groups coming together which makes you feel like you are truly part of a society. Lastly, I am also really looking forward to the B&R Beurs city trip to Budapest upcoming Friday. I hope this will be one memorable experience!