Preparations for the MAN exhibition stand at IAA Commercial Vehicles 2016 have begun almost a year and a half in advance. It will be Janine Strecker's fourth time at the show. For the 33-year-old Event Manager and Business Administration graduate, this is her dream job.
Around 262,000 people attended the world's largest commercial vehicles trade show in September 2014. Almost all of them visited the MAN stand, featuring a huge eye-catching LED screen measuring almost 60 m2. Visitors were treated to approximately 9300 m2 of extraordinary experiences as the trade show concept adopted a new bold approach: "Everything was designed with the new central theme of "'Discover"' in mind – discover MAN, discover the products and discover the services. In order to achieve this we staged real small worlds. For example, for the NEOPLAN brand, which covers exclusive coaches, we set up installations made of suitcases," says Janine Strecker. The 33-year-old's job was to manage the entire project and tie everything together.
"I've never wanted to do anything else."
"In my opinion, it's the best job in the world! Mainly because actually working towards a tangible goal motivates me more than filing papers. It's great to watch all the individual pieces of the puzzle come together over the months to form a complete picture," explains Janine Strecker. Her first experience at the IAA was back in 2008 when she was a working student. "I've been working towards this job ever since I left school. I've never wanted to do anything else," she reveals. After studying Events Management, Janine Strecker went on to study Business Administration. For two years she worked as a trade show hostess whilst studying, before completing an internship at MAN and then writing her thesis there. She would advise apprentices and students to gain practical experience as early as possible since she believes: "This job requires experience. It's not enough to learn the theory, you have to work at it."
"We can only guarantee success if we work as a team."
She herself is now able to draw on her extensive experience: "In the past, I got worked up about things very quickly, but that usually does nothing to help. These days, more often than not, I find it much easier to stay calm. With a project of this size, you simply cannot control everything. Sometimes you just have to rely on other people doing their job as well as you do." The stand at the IAA trade show is the result of true teamwork: "It is crucial that everyone understands their role and realizes that we can only guarantee success if we work as a team." A large part of the company is involved in the IAA preparations, for example the divisions Purchasing and Production, Quality and Development, Product Marketing, PR and Aftersales, of course not forgetting colleagues from MAN ProfiDrive®, who conduct test drives around the trade show grounds, or the catering crew who last year provided visitors with an array of refreshments, including 23,000 freshly-baked pretzels. And what about at the trade show itself? "Every day, we will have several hundred experts manning the stand, welcoming customers or to standing with the vehicles," says Janine Strecker. The brave move last year to implement a completely new trade fair concept really paid off: for the first time ever, it was our stand which came out on top in the visitor survey. "We are extremely proud of that. It's great to be rewarded for all our hard work!"