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I feel absolutely honoured – and a little nervous, I have to admit – that I’ve been asked to do the Allen Russell Oration, the opening plenary at the Pharmaceutical Society’s Annual Conference, in August. Here’s an interview they did with me talking about how Pharmacists, like all businesspeople these days, need to deliberately evolve into someone who loves uncertainty.


JUN15 AP-Marty


In the ‘Good Old Days’ of pharmacy – the mid-70s to 80s – all you really had to do was get a good premises near a couple of GPs, treat your ‘regulars’ well, and know how to make Mist. Expect. Stim off the top of your head, and you could bank on 50% gross profit and do very well thank you very much.
So says Marty Wilson – pharmacist, award-winning copywriter, former Australian Comic of the Year, and now bestselling author and speaker – who will give a keynote address at the opening plenary of PSA15.
‘But those days are long gone,’ he says. 
‘In the new world of pharmacy, you are part of a healthcare sector where accepting the frantically accelerating pace of change in medical technology and expertise is the price of admission to being in business,’ he told Australian Pharmacist.
‘Add to that the constant appearance of disruptive business models that “connected customers” are using to get access to healthcare information and services. 
‘Then we have the triple whammy: the exponentially increasing costs of an ageing population combined with the horrendous effects of a Western lifestyle forcing the government to realise the way it pays for healthcare must be totally revolutionised in the next five to 10 years.’ 
Marty says pharmacy has changed enormously in the past few years, and it’s only going to change more, and faster, in the future. 
‘So every pharmacist who wants to stay in business has to evolve into someone who is totally comfortable in the great big slab of uncertainty that is the future of healthcare,’ he said.
‘They have to accept that the past is gone forever and become early adopters, continually seeking out new ways to deliver what today’s customers want or they’ll be left behind.’ 
In his keynote address, Marty will explain how more 1,000 inspirational people he has interviewed have told him how they came to be someone who loves change, and enjoy leading their team through uncertain times. 
He will explain:
·       How taking more risks can be great for your bottom line.
·       How celebrating and exploring our mistakes is the sure path to innovation.
·       And how accepting change as the true nature of life leads to far greater peace of mind in turbulent times.
Marty has spent his entire professional life studying fear, partly because he was a fulltime stand-up comic for eight years in the UK (and nobody knows how to deal with terror better than an Aussie comic performing to the Brits), but also because he is a relentless entrepreneur who has leapt from one successful career to another. He is a pharmacist turned award-winning advertising copywriter turned stand-up comic turned best-selling author and speaker.

He has spoken to more than 350,000 people since he first conquered his own nerves and leapt up on stage in 1997. In his first 12 months, Marty won Australia’s premiere comedy competition, appeared on the Footy Show, and was invited to the UK to become a fulltime stand-up comic. He returned home 2007 is now the best-selling author of 18 books and a powerful keynote speaker.
You can catch his presentation at the opening plenary of PSA15 on Saturday, August 1, from 9am.
PSA15 – Leading pharmacy innovation – will be held at Sofitel Sydney Wentworth, 31 July – 2 Aug 2015. Further details and registration are available at
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