Career Story: Model Delivery Manager

22/02/2022
Natalie Mallory

This week we caught up with Louise M, our Model Delivery Manager for Merlin Magic Making... 

Who is Merlin Magic Making? 

Merlin Magic Making is the wonderous brain that drives the inspiration and creation of our iconic Attractions and Resorts. Our Magic Makers are dreamers, thinkers, creatives, and believers. We’re the LEGO-lovers, the model makers, the daring designers, and proud producers.

We recreate celebrities out of wax and we bring LEGO® to life at our attractions around the world – using light, sound, and movement. We create rollercoasters and awesome attractions, and we build magical experiences for families young and old, and Fun is always in our job description!

Hi Louise, so what first brought you to Merlin? 

I started in Merlin as an Admissions assistant selling tickets and greeting guests through the turnstiles in LEGOLAND Windsor in a seasonal role back in 2014. The role was attractive as it offered a unique, fun and engaging environment with loads of opportunities for growth within the business. I didn’t realize at the time how much of an impact meeting the wonderful bunch of people at LLW would have on my career and the lifelong friends I would make.

What does a 'day in the life' look like for you as a Model Delivery Manager? 

A day in the life of a Model Delivery Manager changes by the day! It can mean managing an installation of LEGO Models or Waxwork figures during a 4+ week install period on one of Merlin’s newest sites. Other days, I am liaising with architects, project managers, and creatives to ensure that the models are captured in engineering drawings, that our requirements will be met on-site, and that the guest experience will exceed expectations.

And what's the biggest challenge in your role? 

I love the challenge of putting together an install plan and executing it on site. This involves everything from leading the logistics for a team of highly skilled technicians and experts to ensuring wax figures and models are freighted on time, to planning fun places to eat after a busy day on site. The installs definitely are challenging but also are the highlight of my role.  

What would you say is most rewarding?

It’s very rewarding to see a project through from a concept or a creative brief all the way to completion, where we get to enjoy our guest’s excitement at opening day. There is something very special about seeing an idea or a solution to a problem become reality in one of the attractions. I’m really excited to see our new Launch Control interactive come to life in LDC Brussels after being involved at every step of the way from the creative concept.

So what have you learned during your role?

I have been lucky enough to take on many exciting challenges, meaning I have learned lots as a Model Delivery Manager. I have gained experience in managing a tendering process and placing legal contracts with suppliers, freighting internationally, and managing budgets and stakeholders.

And what are you most proud of?

Having been involved at every step of the way, I am most proud and excited to deliver Launch Control into LEGO Discovery Centre Brussels, which is a very exciting piece of new technology combining real LEGO builds with a virtual arcade-style video game and will be brought to our guests in Summer 2022. This tech will also be rolled out to all new LDCs and some of our existing estate. I am also proud to have to lead the installation of LEGO Models into LDC Scheveningen and wax figures in MT Dubai.

In your opinion, what's the best perk working for Merlin? 

Merlin really values its people and invests in learning and development. This is a really important motivating factor to me as I can see opportunities for career development and personal improvement. There are also really fun days out to be had in our attractions which is a great perk!

And finally, what qualities do you need to succeed in your role? 

I believe stakeholder management is a huge part of being successful in any role, even the most technical. Being able to work with people well is always going to improve efficiencies and produce a culture for our projects to be successful. Therefore I am always looking to nurture my communication skills and become more self-aware enough to understand my strengths, weaknesses and when to ask for help.

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