Prior to the launch of Agrovista Amenity, Martyn Parrish was a technical area sales manager for Maxwell Amenity. He had been in the role for two years before the acquisition.
“We’ve become one of the largest companies in the sector, and are able to support the industry and create something very special,” he said. “Merging two companies of that size is no easy task but I have been extremely impressed with the work that has been done. I feel proud to be working for this company.”
Martyn has spent most of his career in greenkeeping and started working at his local golf club at the age of 16. During his time as a greenkeeper, he completed his foundation degree in Sportsturf Management at Myerscough College and participated in the Ohio State Programme on a 12-month internship in which he worked on a Jack Nicklaus course construction and a grow-in in Texas – something which he pinpoints as a career highlight.
Before moving to Agrovista Amenity, Martyn was tempted away from golf for six years working as a grounds manager on an ambitious landscape construction project of a 400 acre site in Henley on Thames. Commenting on this role, Martyn claims that it was “extremely challenging but ultimately a once in a lifetime opportunity.”
He admits that moving into sales was a transition which took some time adjusting to. However, in the past three years Martyn has built up an impressive portfolio of clients and now looks after an area spanning from Berkshire across to Essex and up to Northampton.
“The commercial side of the industry was completely new to me,” he said. “I have some great colleagues that helped me a lot during my early days. With my background, I felt most comfortable in the golf sector to start with, however I was very conscious to get in there and experience all parts of the sportsturf and amenity industry. Sometimes you can get locked behind your own gate and you only see what is behind it.
“I quickly learnt not to be afraid of my weaknesses - the more you talk, the more you interact with people and the more you immerse yourself in education – the more you will learn about the parts of the industry that you didn’t know as well.
“I now have at least one customer that covers every area in sportsturf and amenity and can often have five visits a day that are radically different. My first visit might be a golf club followed by a local authority, then I might well move on to a football ground or a cricket ground and then visit a school in the afternoon.
“There are so many great people in the industry, and I love interacting with all the different people from the various facilities and sectors – it is the best part of my job.”
“The changes in legislation are probably the biggest obstacle to overcome,” he said. “It has changed the way we manage surfaces and it will continue to do so. The loss of products and the sustainable use of resources have been difficult. You have to change the way you think and the way you approach your job, but fortunately we have some amazing people in this industry that are creative and exceptionally good at overcoming problems.”
With the acquisition bringing together two of the most experienced and progressive teams in the amenity turf market, Martyn believes that Agrovista Amenity is now well placed to be at the forefront of these creative solutions.
“In terms of research and development, I feel we are in pole position,” he said. “The company is now able to lead the way in terms of introducing new ideas, new products and proven solutions to the market. We can also distribute these solutions and our products far and wide.
“Previously we only had ten people on the road - now there are well over 40 and that will continue to evolve.”
Outside of work, Martyn is recently married and admits to being addicted to sports and keeping fit. As well as playing football and golf regularly, he has completed three Iron Man races across Europe and has represented Great Britain in the World Triathlon Grand Finals.
For more information, visit www.agrovista.co.uk/amenity