A day in the life: Getting a Grip of things

Tim Groot, CEO and co-founder of technology company Grip, shares with CN a typical day at his London headquarters:

My mornings are extremely relaxed. I’m the type of person who sets his alarm at 7am because he wants to get the most out of the day and then snoozes for 30 minutes. Horrible, I know. When I have finally dragged myself to the kitchen for the strongest double espresso I can possibly make, I start to wake up. I live in Notting Hill, London and have just a ten-minute walk to our office in Kensington where I usually arrive between 8.30am and 9am. By then I will have checked the most urgent emails, caught up on the latest news and carried out several face palms reading about Donald Trump and Brexit.

Most of the time I have quite a few emails to catch up on from the US and Asia that will have hit my inbox overnight. I try to get to inbox zero by 9.30am (highly ambitious, I know). While I continue battling emails and Slack messages (a highly valuable instant messaging services for companies) between tech team updates and the occasional design work for our products, I always try to book my meetings at 11.30am or later so that I have made sure that the marketing and engineering team have everything from me they need to complete their day effectively.

Meetings usually range from calls with event organisers and app providers to investor calls as we are currently working on a new funding round. We have signed several great partnerships with event app providers in recent months including Attendease, ITM Mobile and Goomeo, some of best apps available in their specific niches.

We have quite a nice office; it used to be decorated in a slightly weird 1980s Japanese banking style. Now, however, it has been refurbished and feels like a New York Loft straight from someone’s Pinterest collection. We all sit together on a large white desk, the highlight of which is the Adventure Time stickers (one of our engineers has joined the cult following for this cartoon!) and our table plant called Fred, which is faithfully watered every single day. Let’s call it a mascot.

When it comes to events we are working with Goomeo on MAPIC one of the largest retail property shows and also with Attendease for a great event organised by Intuit. We are looking forward to bringing the magic of our artificial intelligence business matchmaking to their event apps.  In both cases our AI powered matchmaking engine is used to more efficiently connect attendees with each other and with other companies.

We are also currently working on an exciting project relating to using our platform for a Government campaign. It’s top secret at the moment so watch this space….

Due to the forward-thinking nature of what we do in the event tech space, I’m regularly asked to speak about artificial intelligence, event networking and start-ups. Although I love sharing my views I also realise that we still have a long way to go and a lot to learn. Tech will never stand still and this is what I love about my job – no two days are ever the same and I am always learning something new.

I work until quite late – my flatmate never knows if I have been for a drink with friends, speaking and networking at an event or worked at the office as I always come home at around 11pm.

Most of the time I end the evening by reading a book, I’m currently reading The Brain That Changes Itself by Norman Doidge. It’s about neuroscience, a topic I’m extremely interested in in especially in relation to Artificial Intelligence and the “self”. As Aristotle said: “Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.”

Grip’s AI powered business matchmaking solution uses social and behavioural data to help people to make meaningful connections at events. The app’s fun and easy-to-use interface allows people to swipe right to meet those they are interested in connecting with. If both parties swipe right, this results in Grip’s signature virtual ‘handshake’ and contact details are shared. Grip is currently transforming networking at events, making it easier than ever before to connect with the right people and recently reached 1m swipes on the app’s addictive interface.

Martin Fullard


Martin Fullard

Martin Fullard: journalist, presenter, producer. Martin is the Deputy Editor at Conference News and Conference & Meetings World magazines. He leads the digital channels on Mash Media’s Conference Division as well as heading up Mash TV. He is formerly a web editor at a national newspaper in the Middle East and motoring journalist.

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