“Coming together is a beginning; keeping together is progress; working together is success.”
We’re excited to introduce you to the people working at Expo 2020 Dubai. During 6 unforgettable months, they’ll assure that the message of the Luxembourg Pavilion resonates in all its vibrancy.
Today, you’ll meet Christophe Nickels, Operations assistant, and Logistics Manager.
1. What is your name and what do you do at the Luxembourg Pavilion?
Hi! My name is Christophe Nickels, and I am currently Operations Assistant and Logistics Manager at the Luxembourg Pavilion at Expo 2020 in Dubai.
As an operations assistant, I have a very wide and varied array of tasks, since I am helping out wherever needed, whether in event management, protocol, communication, or any other pavilion operation (access cards etc…) where the action is required.
As Logistics Manager, I am in charge of the inventory of the shop, making sure that our stock of products doesn’t run out, and coordinating with our suppliers, as well as doing some of the heavy liftings when the boxes arrive.
Finally, I am Buggy Driver One whenever buggy transportation is needed.
2. What motivated you to work at the Luxembourg Pavilion?
I was enthralled by the concept of 190+ countries coming together, in one location, to exchange knowledge, expertise, and exchange ideas to hopefully push the world towards a more sustainable and better tomorrow.
It was also an opportunity to change my working environment; I come from the courts of the tennis world, and trying to thrive in an open-space, dynamic and shared office, with a more team-oriented approach is a new and exciting challenge for me that I wished to discover.
Lastly, I hope to forge new friendships and contacts and use this project and experience as a platform for my future career.
3. How does a day at the Luxembourg Pavilion look like?
Like any other, it starts by waking up. Here though, you wake up to sunshine all year round, which is a delightful beginning to your day! I think that a typical day at the Expo and at our pavilion is, in essence, atypical!
The whole experience is like a rollercoaster of emotions.
There are exciting and busy moments sprinkled into the less thrilling and less busy days, just as there are tedious moments wedged into the more exciting and full days, like the Chamber of Commerce missions for example, or Minister visits. An Expo Day is like a box of chocolates; you rarely know what you’re gonna get.
4. What is your favorite aspect of working for the Luxembourg Pavilion and for Expo 2020 Dubai?
The Dream Team in our office makes the overall atmosphere fun and inspiring, even on the tougher and busier days.
Knowing you have your colleagues to lighten the mood or share a laugh with when the going gets tough makes some of the challenges that this project brings easier to deal with.
No challenge or last-minute change is too big to tackle when everyone is pulling in the same direction and helping each other out whenever needed.
5. What is your favorite part of the Luxembourg Pavilion?
There is no wrong answer here, it’s like picking your favorite child, it’s an impossible task! But if I have to single one part out, I will have to go with the ‘‘beautiful’’ sector, which is the final part of the pavilion tour. There are so many gorgeous details to it, that your senses are overloaded.
You have the sound of the philharmonic orchestra, the views of the different regions of Luxembourg combined with the scent of the Mullerthal as you walk down the stairs; or, you take the giant slide made of glass and steel, 2 key Luxembourgish materials, that takes you down into the greenery at a very fast pace.
There are two terrific paths to end the Tour at the Luxembourgish pavilion, and for me, that’s why the “beautiful” section of the pavilion takes the gold medal.
6. What is the most important lesson you have learned during your time working for the Luxembourg Pavilion so far?
The more adaptable you are and being able to think quickly and improvise on the fly, the better prepared you are for the unexpected issues that inevitably arise on a project of this magnitude.
Also, streamlined and clear communication between colleagues and other involved parties is of paramount importance.
7. Any special events you’re particularly looking forward to?
I don’t think I can pinpoint one event in particular, but I enjoy our ministerial visits or Chamber of Commerce missions, during which having a clear-cut and detailed program for the whole day really forces you to be focused and alert so that the day’s timings align smoothly and precisely.
8. What can EXPO 2020 DUBAI do for our future?
One of Expo2020’s points of emphasis, ever since they won the bid to host the event, has been to be as sustainable as possible, with various sustainability goals in mind throughout all phases of the event.
I hope that these goals will be achieved, and subsequently provide a blueprint of sustainability for future world Expos or any other global events of this size.