Telling the truth about SME life today

Gary Thompson

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Name: Gary Thompson

Age: 38

Company: easyfundraising.org.uk. We help good causes throughout the UK raise money from their everyday online shopping.

Turnover: £2.4m

First job: Working as a waiter in the very prestigious Happy Eater roadside restaurant chain. It went bust not long after I left. I like to think I kept it going and they couldn?t make money without me.

Dream job: To work in a VC company, surrounded by incredibly smart and passionate people, investing in the latest and greatest tech startups. A bit sad but I can’t think of a more exciting environment to work within. 

Car: A VW T5 transporter for surfboards, mountain bikes, kayaks etc, a 1972 beetle for Sunday afternoon driving and a VW golf for the motorway.

Economy, business or first-class: Economy all the way. Saying that, I have tried numerous times for a cheeky upgrade and failed every time. Any tips?

Most extravagant purchase: I recently popped out for a bacon sandwich and came back with a £1,000 surfboard that I didn?t need. It looks nice though.

Most played song on your iPod: “Stanway Hill” by Paul Cherry.

Best business book: Who by Geoff Smart and Randy Street. It’s by far the most useful business book I’ve ever read. It’s a very simple yet brilliant guide for recruiting. I urge everyone to read it!

Worst business moment: Losing our biggest client within two weeks of signing them up. It was entirely our fault and hugely frustrating. 

Proudest business moment: Signing up a very large and prestigious company to support their entire IT infrastructure. It was a massive achievement all round and showed we could compete with the best. We had arrived!

Business mentor: A gentleman called Philippe Huser. To this day I can hear his mantra of “organise, delegate, supervise”.  

Next big thing: I reckon mobile payment services will finally become mainstream towards the end of this year. 

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