Nick Gramelspacher, YEN Member Insights, September 2014

Nick Gramelspacher, YEN Member Insights, September 2014, Automotive News, Aftermarket News

Describe yourself in your own words.
My name is Nicholas Gramelspacher, and I am vice president, sales and marketing, at Meyer Distributing, and a member of the SEMA Board of Directors. I have a wife, April, and son, Ajay.

What type of education do you have?
I have a degree in business management.

Did you choose the aftermarket or did the aftermarket choose you?
I chose the aftermarket-I was tinkering on and fixing up trucks in early high school and fell in love with it. We have a family business in the furniture industry, but I wanted to plow my own path to do what I love and love what I do: cars, trucks and Jeeps. That, along with working for a great company like Meyer, which has had tremendous growth, and having a hardworking team made it a great decision 16 years ago.

What has your career path looked like?
I started with Meyer in the shipping department and worked there for about six months before moving into sales. We were a single location, 25,000-sq.-ft. company back then, selling about 40 lines.

When and how did you start volunteering within SEMA?
I started with YEN back in 2004.

Do you feel volunteering has helped grow your personal career and your company?
Yes, the networking is unbelievable if you put yourself out there and engage rather than being passive. On the other hand, I've seen where some can speak too much or try and dominate the conversation or conference calls. There is a happy medium of participation for sure.

What are your personal and professional goals for the future?
Personally, I keep work and home life balanced, so I'm a good husband and dad. It's easy to get caught up in this crazy, busy work life. I want to start traveling abroad with my wife and see some bucket-list places. Professionally, I will continue and finish my career with Meyer Distributing. I want to fill out our logistical map, delivering to the lower 48, and add more automotive and non-automotive lines to our product mix. Additionally, I'd be honored to be elected to another term on the SEMA Board of Directors, continue to volunteer in the industry I love so much and, hopefully, one day, be elected into the SEMA Hall of Fame.

As a WD, what are some growth opportunities you see?
LED lighting, exhaust, tires and wheels and tonneau covers are the hottest products for us right now. The high-performance segment is also new to us, but growing nicely.

What are the most important things YEN members can do to have a successful SEMA Show experience?
Attend the council and network receptions to connect with industry leaders. Try and stay focused on your career path or business segment-it's easy to get lost and lose focus at the Show. I'd recommend spending the majority of your time with those in your respective segment, if that's what you want to do for your career.

What career advice would you give YEN members?
Don't expect it to come easy; it takes a lot of hard work and dedication to succeed. If you slip or fall, use it as a learning experience to better yourself.

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