90 Second Chat Series for #IBYE
Don’t be afraid of failing, says #IBYE 2014 Category Winner, Dean Gammell.
90 second Q&A with Dean Gammell of The Group System in Westmeath.
“People forget that most entrepreneurs have failed several times before finding success. It’s all part of business. I have personally failed more times than I have succeeded. Don’t be afraid of failing!”
Dean Gammell, of The Group System
Name: Dean Gammell
Title: Founder of thegroupsystem.com
Award: Winner of the ‘Best Established Business’ Category at #IBYE 2014
Dean, what does your company do?
We provide software solutions to hotels and activity centres to manage their group bookings more efficiently. We take all the pain and hassle out of group bookings. Our software automates all the manual tasks normally associated with group bookings.
Where did the idea come from?
I came up with the idea through my other business, called stagit.ie (Ireland’s largest stag company). Groups were having lots of problems trying to collect cash off everyone in the group so we designed software to do it for them. We built on the software over time to include many other features.
What were the biggest challenges early on?
Every day is a challenge! You become immune to difficulties and you just blast through them or figure out a way to solve it. I do it every single day. The day I have no problems is the day something is wrong with our growth.
Because we handle a lot of payments we had a lot of hassle initially getting setup with different banks and becoming verified. This is good though, as it makes it harder for market entry by other possible competitors and it protects the customer in the long-run.
What are the benefits of using The Group System and what makes it different?
We save all the hassle of group bookings, so rather than you going around collecting cash off everybody in the group you just log into our system, invite your friends by email or text.
Your friends can then login; they can see who is going, not going and all the details of the weekend. We automate reminders and invites so there is no hassle on the organiser.
As an organiser, you don’t have to collect cash off everybody, set up a bank account to get people to pay into or risk your own money and pay on behalf of those travelling.
How have the Local Enterprise Offices (www.localenterprise.ie) supported you so far?
Local Enterprise Office Westmeath is such a great support for us. They have helped me since Day One, doing the ‘Start Your Own Business’ course, accountancy courses and getting employee grants. They an unbelievable ‘helping hand’ to have in your corner.
What advice would you give to other young entrepreneurs?
Start now, start young! There are too many excuses not to start – no time is a good time!
What are your ‘top tips’ for succeeding in business?
Welcome problems with open arms. They are only short term “challenges” that will lead you to bigger better things every time you overcome one.
Make mistakes and learn from them. One thing that annoys me about entrepreneurship is that 95% of the stories you hear are the successful ones.
People forget that most entrepreneurs have failed several times before finding success.
It’s all part of business. I have personally failed more times than I have succeeded.
Don’t be afraid of failing!
To find out more Dean’s business, visit www.thegroupsystem.com (which is currently rebranding as gogroupbooking.com)