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Mette Lykke Nielsen, CEO

My Job

I aim to help associations and SMEs see the opportunities that the EU offers and assist them in influencing the EU agenda.

I work with public affairs in different sectors primarily at the EU level but also from time to time at the national level in European countries.

I follow the agenda and legislative developments closely and communicate the outcomes and impacts to my clients. I give them strategic advice on how to influence and which stakeholders to meet with and I help via my network to get the companies branded at EU level.

Further to my daily lobby work for companies I also offer trainings in public affairs at EU level both for boards and management of associations to make them understand the impact and opportunities EU provide.

My Experience

I have always been active, one way or the other, with politics. Understanding and engaging in a political environment is my speciality. I was active at EU level in politics in my younger years. I worked in the Danish parliament as an EU adviser and moved on to head the Danish European Movement. I built up their business network and via that, helped to increase the fundraising to the association.

Later I went to Brussels, first at Head of Public Affairs for the European Fur Farmers and later continued as CEO for the European Fur Sector representing both the farmers and the retail/trade side of the business.

In 2020 I went full time into my own business and have been helping clients in biotech, education, transport and energy – building a solid reputation at EU level and engaging with EU officials.

My Proudest Achievements

On two occasions in Brussels, I have been an organiser of popular and highly successful events in the European Parliament. You will often see an exhibition on the Parliament’s 3rd floor, but it is rarer to see events that achieve high levels of engagement. I am proud of those successes, which led to the arrangement of more than 100 bilateral meetings in 2014 and more than 150 bilateral meetings in January 2020 with MEPs and other relevant EU stakeholders. Those secured meetings had an immensely positive impact on the policy development and branding of the sector.

My Education

I have a master’s in political science from Aarhus University in Denmark.

My Languages

Danish, Norwegian, English.

My Interests outside work

I love to be outside. I go rowing on the Brussels canal every week. I go horse riding in the Belgian countryside whenever I can find the time and during the week I bike and run.

My Favourite Brussels anecdote

I am open to meeting all EU stakeholders, no matter if they support the subject matter I am representing or not. I meet MEPs from all parties and all countries, as that is part of being a lobbyist. That said, there is one MEP in particular that I am a little bit afraid of meeting again. I met her twice, each time working for different employers and in different sectors. The first time, I had a 30-minute meeting where I didn’t even get to introduce myself, but instead she spent 30 minutes ranting about how bad the sector was and how much she hated it. She ended up throwing a pencil after me.

The next meeting took place a couple of years later and started more friendly – but she disagreed with a campaign the chairman of the association I worked for had done. She agreed with the policy and the aim but said the timing was wrong and to show her frustration, she threw a paper notebook after me!

As I am sure you can imagine, I am afraid of what the third time will bring…

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