LET’S MEET… OUR GROUP CONVENTIONS PRODUCTION TEAM
Today we catch up with the NEC Group’s Conventions production team, responsible for helping plan and deliver the technical elements of events at Group venues.
This includes Ben Prior, our Head of Technical Production, who has worked for the NEC Group for just over 10 years.
Within Ben’s team, we have Zach Miller, our Senior Conference Technician, and Emily Bisp, our Group Conventions Lead Technician, who have been with us for just over one year.
Last but by no means least is Joe Greenfield, our ICC and VOX Production Manager, who has been with the company for one year and eight months.
Who are you and what do you do?
B: I'm Ben and I head up a team of five Production Managers who help our clients plan their events and lead on their technical delivery, to make sure the events run smoothly and are as creative and as impactful as possible. There is also a technical team made up of 17. This includes technicians, maintenance and store staff and admin personnel. We also work with two apprentices. So quite a large, talented and creative team in the whole.
J: My name is Joe; I am a Production Manager at the ICC and Vox. I work with clients to ensure all the technical and production requirements for their events are understood, then with the technical crew to ensure the event is delivered to a great standard.
What brought you into the events industry?
E: I got into this industry by going to my first ever gig when I was a teenager and wanted to recreate that experience every day.
B: I previously worked in theatre, working in London’s West End on many touring productions. I diversified a few years ago working on shows and projects at Alton Towers, including spending a large chunk of time on their many Live Scare mazes for Halloween and the 4D cinema. Following 15 years of Panto as a Company Manager I fancied a change, there was a Senior Lighting Technician role available within the ICC, so I tried my luck. That was 10 years and 4 roles ago… it was only meant to be a short-term thing!
What do you get up to outside of work?
Z: Play golf, watch movies, and go for walks with my wife.
J: I love coffee, cocktails, and cooking!
E: I like to catch up on sleep and ride horses. I also like to travel and surf when possible.
What do you enjoy most about your role?
J: I love the buzz when the venue is full, and there’s nothing better when a client can’t get the smile off their face because the day has gone so well.
Z: Being able to work with industry leading equipment and very skilled people.
B: The team, without a doubt. The Production Managers and all the technical staff are so invested in making sure the events are the best they can be. The diverse range of events we host from medical conferences and exhibitions to X-Factor auditions to political events and festivals. It’s just a fun and varied environment in which to work.
What is challenging about your role?
J: I both love and hate the step count! 20,000 steps on an event day are not unusual – that’s great for your fitness goals but not so good for your sore feet!
B: Making sure everything works correctly, and that everyone is happy. We and our clients put so much faith into the hands of the technology gods and most of the time this works, but inevitably there are very rare occasions where there are glitches!
Looking ahead to the next year, what are you excited about?
B: We have worked through a lot of capital investment this year – there have been a lot of ongoing projects to improve the equipment and venue infrastructure to ensure we are offering the best solutions to our clients. I think seeing all these come to fruition and seeing the events evolve because of that will be exciting and will be quite satisfying for the whole team to see and be involved with. We are really changing some of what we offer which will bring a lot of benefits for us and our clients.