08-Sep-14by Annie Byrne
For someone who has jumped from the plumbing and heating trade business to winning accolades within the exhibition industry without any experience - he must be doing something right. Garry Tyson, sales manager at CloserStill Media joined the firm in July 2011, and knew it was the right fit for him – even if he wasn’t offered the job straight away.“I remember going for an interview being completely nervous and once I entered the building I was hit with this enormous wave of energy and enthusiasm. Straight away I knew I wanted to work here,” he tells EN. “I hounded our commercial director on the telephone – I think he felt a little sorry for me and gave me the role in the end.” Three years later, with two individual industry awards under his beard, neither CloserStill or Tyson have looked back. He started out as a delegate sales executive and after three months Tyson was given the chance to join the sales team on The Pharmacy Show. “That’s how I got my foot in the door, and have been promoted along the way.” In that time he has also won the company salesperson two years on the bounce. His response: “With awesomeness comes great power and responsibility. Such responsibility is to never talk about one’s sacred beard.” No questions asked. In 2013, Tyson won the Exhibition News award for Rising Star and kept the momentum up by winning the Best Organiser Salesperson gong at this year’s awards. “I was over the moon when my name was announced, it is a reminder of the blood and guts you put into the show and company you work for – although at CloserStill we are like a big family so any personal glory is down to the efforts of my colleagues as well.”CloserStill was also recognised for its efforts at the awards as the organiser walked away with five other trophies. It appears that the company has rapidly grown since it started in November 2008, in a small office in Honiley with less than 10 staff and two shows. CloserStill now has more than 120 employees and offices in London, Coventry and Singapore. The organiser operates chiefly in the healthcare and technology markets organising a portfolio of events including: Learning Technologies, Cloud Expo Europe, The Pharmacy Show and The London Vet Show. When he’s not pumping iron at the gym, he’s ambitiously selling behind the scenes of The Pharmacy Show, which won the EN Award for Best Trade Show last year. “The last 12 months have been phenomenal on a personal and also a company perspective. I have been promoted to sales manager and am now also responsible for training up the next wave of superstars at CloserStill – which is very rewarding. “I am also in the process of putting together the final pieces of our 2014 Pharmacy Show which has been a blast and now I’m just focused on hitting target and ensuring the show is the best it can be.”If there’s one thing he has learned from working in events, Tyson says, is that time is of the essence. “If you do not value your time then you are in the wrong game, so I make the most of every opportunity. The awards are a way of recognising your achievements as they motivate me even more to do better.”Big things are expected in 2014/2015 with continued growth for the company, Tyson and Tyson’s beard. “We are growing at an alarming rate and the expansion is something to behold.” The Pharmacy ShowOn 5-6 October, the organiser is set to return to The NEC with the next edition of The Pharmacy Show. More than 7,000 healthcare professionals and 450 exhibitors are expected to attend, up from 6,800 visitors and 400 companies at last year’s event. Features for this year include: • Over 60 CPD education sessions across five conference streams• More than 450 suppliers on the show floor – the biggest ever line-up with 100 new brands for 2014• New Public Health and Wellbeing theatre • New Local Pharmacy Innovation theatre • Keynote Theatre • Clinical Theatre• Business Theatre• Pharmacy Show VIP Club
This article first appeared in the September 2014 issue of Exhibition News.