In an operational environment, every piece of information is crucial and small details can make a huge difference when time is limited.
His work not only increases the efficiency and accuracy of workflows and helps maintain a common understanding of operational data, but also enables senior decision makers to make more informed decisions to achieve their objectives.
Labsvirs engaged effectively with senior military officers and NATO staff in order to build an improved understanding of situational awareness in a number of critical situations, provide feedback on execution of the mission, and track progress against operational objectives.
For his dedication and integral support to NATO overseas missions and the Alliance, Labsvirs was recently awarded the NATO Meritorious Service Medal by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg.
We asked Labsvirs a few questions to learn more about his work.
What was the most rewarding thing about supporting NATO operations as a deployed analyst?
For me, the most rewarding thing about supporting NATO operations is the opportunity to work with military and civilian staff across the whole Alliance. During six deployments, I was able to work with, and learn from analysts and military officers from Greece, the United States, Spain, Lithuania, Italy and Turkey. I was able to make friends with people who I still keep in touch with now.
The fact of being far from home and working intensively over a period of time can bring colleagues closer together. Working for NATO is a unique opportunity to collaborate with people from all over the globe, and nowhere is this more evident than when you are deployed to multinational operational headquarters.
How would you describe the work that you do day-to-day and why is it important for NATO?
As an operational analyst at the NCI Agency, I'm fortunate enough to work on number of different projects, including supporting strategic defence planning, to deploying operational headquarters supporting NATO missions. While the type of work varies, the underlying principle of it is to use scientific and mathematical techniques to help NATO commanders make informed decisions. Although most of my work is within small parts of a larger process, it usually plugs into a bigger picture, from helping NATO harmonize its defence planning activities to assessing the progress of its ongoing operations.
What would be your recommendation to someone who just started their role at NATO?
My main recommendation would be to make sure you put yourself outside of your comfort zone from a work perspective. There are plenty of unique opportunities available in NATO, through project work, training, conferences, panels or deployments, but sometimes you need to look for them and push yourself to get involved. Try to use the experiences that come from being a part of such a big Alliance to learn new skills that you can bring back into your work. If something feels confusing, new or difficult, then it is probably worth persevering with it!