Tiqets has offices all over the world – from Philadelphia to London and good ol’ Amsterdam – and has made it a priority to operate as one global community. This new series focuses on our international Tiqeteers and what makes them tick.
Today’s Remote Tiqeting installment features Olivier Roure, our Regional Director for Western & Eastern Europe. Holding the fort at Tiqets’ Paris office, he talks about his addiction to extreme sports, his strategies for approaching potential partners (nerves of steel are a must!) and how much fun it is to work in the small but mighty Paris team.
First of all, tell us a bit about yourself
I’m Olivier and I’ve been with Tiqets since May 2016. I’m part of the Supply team based in the Paris office. I was born in Mexico and worked for many years in the tourism industry in different countries before I moved to France. I spend my free time backpacking around the world, and I’m totally addicted to extreme sports: from deep caverns diving and ultra-trail running to alpine climbing and freefall skydiving!
Can you give us a brief summary of what your job entails?
My role consists of executing the leadership strategy to achieve the financial, acquisitional, and quality goals of the Western and Eastern Europe regions, and to provide guidance to individuals and teams spread across them. Put simply, I make sure that Tiqets’ supply is, and remains, relevant in each region.
What’s the most challenging aspect of your role?
I often find the decision-making processes at publicly administered venues to be challenging. Approaching a popular venue is usually a challenge in itself, but once you start the discussions even bigger challenges emerge, like resistance to change, cultural barriers, and slow-paced environments etc. In most cases, you need to be really creative and also very patient in order to close the right deal.
Local challenges can vary from one country to another. You might have to deal with regular strike action or complicated contracting processes in France, and you’ll probably need a lot of patience (and steely nerves) to negotiate a contract with a retired Soviet army colonel in Russia. Also, it’s worth being quite detail-oriented when it comes to checking invoices in Spain!
We need to adapt to these cultural differences in order to offer relevant cultural products to our customers, People expect to book and visit the venues and have the same seamless experience no matter which venue they book.
What does an average day as a Regional Director look like?
What I love about this role is that every day is different. No matter how well you plan ahead, there will always be something unexpected happening during the day. The only thing that never changes at the Paris office is the morning coffee time! Once we’ve taken our daily dose of caffeine and set the right mood to work efficiently, we’ll be ready to face a new Tiqets day, which may look as follows:
I generally start by looking at the product sales report from the previous day and smiling (or not). Then I’ll scan through my emails, deal with any priorities right away, and prepare for the weekly Skype call with one of the regional managers. We’ll go over the previous week’s successes and challenges, discuss the strategy to follow, and set the short terms goals for the upcoming week.
In the meantime, I might have received a call or two from the Eiffel Tower or the Palace of Versailles to casually announce a sudden staff strike which will affect hundreds of orders. I often have a business meeting scheduled that day; theme parks, for instance, love MBRs (monthly business reviews).
During the day, I get contacted via our instant messaging system by Marketing, Finance and Product teams to update me and discuss different topics. Some topics are actually very important ongoing projects that require a lot of attention and involvement from many teams at HQ, and a precise coordination from the local office. Working on those projects brings a lot of excitement and many hours of preparation.
I usually try to close the office at around 18.30. Recently this has been a bit later as we still have open positions to fill in France, Germany, and in Russia (speaking of which, visit the Tiqets jobs page to see our vacancies!). Finally, I’ll do my best to end the day with a nice city-run to head back home.
The Paris office is a little outside our Amsterdam HQ (but in an equally amazing capital city). What does Tiqets do to make sure the French team feels connected to the main Amsterdam branch?
We’re always invited to great yearly events where all local offices around the world and the HQ teams get together. For example, the traditional summer party and the super fun Christmas party, but there are also other amazing travel opportunities, like this year’s ski-trip in Kaprun. It’s safe to say everyone had a blast, even if I ended up with two broken ribs! Those kinds of events are always fantastic memory makers and incredible opportunities for team building!
We’re also all connected on a daily basis to the teams in Amsterdam and around the world by instant messages, video calls, and on the phone. A Tiqets classic is the Pizza & Beer session, where everyone in our global offices can connect to the live broadcast and learn about important topics and ongoing projects within Tiqets.
Furthermore, anyone has the opportunity to connect directly with Luuc, our CEO and ask him questions about any topic during the weekly #askluuc sessions. Finally, I try to visit the Amsterdam offices as often as possible, which allows me to be informed faster about the latest news.
What’s the team dynamic like in the Paris office? Do you get up to anything fun?
We’re a small team in Paris, but we work in an insanely fun atmosphere! In a few words, we work hard and play harder! We try to have lunch together every day; food discussions are always fun moments with the team, and of course, the French classic “champagne apéro” (or mojitos for Kim) are always there when we have something to celebrate.
Every month we try to make time in our personal schedules to go see a show, an exhibition opening, or just visit a new venue together after work. Recently we’ve been visiting offices in Paris and I am really happy to announce that we finally found one! Our brand new Paris office opened on 1 September. It’s a beautiful central location with a lovely, cozy atmosphere. Everything will soon be ready to welcome the current and future Paris-based Tiqeteers.
What’s the most rewarding aspect of your role?
Tiqets leaves a really positive mark in all the countries in which we operate. In many cases, Tiqets has changed the rules of the traditional ticketing game and has revolutionized the way people book, enter, and visit cultural and tourist attractions. Being part of this exciting journey and being able to contribute to its success is definitely one of the most rewarding aspect of the role.
What is your favorite thing about working at Tiqets?
The culture – I think Tiqets’ culture is unique (like its people) and you won’t find it anywhere else!
Right now we’re hiring new Regional Managers (RMs) for France and Germany. Do you have any good advice for potential candidates?
Tiqets is all about culture, either you fit in or you don’t. If the words “routine” or “comfort zone” define you well, then this is definitely not a position for you. My best advice would simply be to be yourself, don’t pretend to be someone else, and be creative. You’ll need a lot of creativity to make some deals happen once you’re on the job. Be proud and stand out from the crowd!
What’s the main trait a Regional Manager should have?
I see the RM role as a perfect mix of a highly creative sales professional, an outstanding operational person, a razor-sharp details-oriented individual, and of course a fun office manager to work with! I’m looking for this set of skills for the open positions; the weight of each skill may vary according to the specificities of each region.