Every week, I am highlighting on some of the incredible people who are in the Audio Video Industry. As this blog is mostly about AV insiders, today we are profiling Christopher Neto.
Here is a brief intro about him.
Christopher Neto, CTS has worked in the Audiovisual industry for over 15 years. He is currently working as an AV Design Consultant for AV Helpdesk and Technology Writer/Podcaster for mainly AVNation.
1. Describe your journey in the AV industry? How did it start?
My journey into AV started in college. I graduated with a Bachelor’s degree in Communication with a Concentration in Radio and TV. It’s not what I went to school for originally, I was an art major with a goal to become a graphic artist. I changed my major after discovering that I could have creative freedom behind a camera and microphone. While in college I interned with the New York Giants Football team with their internal video department. That was an amazing learning experience. I learned so much about video during my time there, but more importantly I learned about “business”. Up until that point I had never worked within Corporate. This help me prepare for my 1st job out of college.
When I graduated I was hired by a small company that was selling video conferencing hardware. In college we focused on broadcast technologies, Video conferencing was a new to me. I was hired as a technician and within a few weeks I was traveling across the country doing installations of professional Videoconferencing systems at Fortune 500 companies. Back in 1998 the “system” consisted of a 4 ISDN lines, CRT monitor, Mobile Cart, wired mic and a Set-top Videoconferencing system. These basic systems quickly evolved into larger integrated systems with control processors, projectors, ceiling speakers and table mics. My path in had begun. I went from VTC installation technician to Inside Sales, Accounts Manager, Project Manager, Onsite contractor, Onsite AV engineer, End-user to AV Design consultant.
2. What do you think is the challenges that are facing a new person who wants to join the industry?
There are plenty of challenges facing a new person who wants to join the AV industry. The most prevalent is the mindset of “This is how we’ve always done it” needs to change. There is so much to be said on this topic alone.
3. What are the positives of working in this industry?
There are so many positives.
The “Kid” inside loves to play with the latest and greatest technology. As a Fan of the technology and gadgets I fit right in to the AV industry. What we do is fun. We are tasked to take all these different technologies and create a seamless working system. Many will associate the “Fun” part with the challenge of the design and the space. I agree. There is something special when you see customers smile from a job well done.
I love how our technology can deliver an emotional response. Imagine a stadium without AV? It’s just large playing field without our help. We deliver the excitement, the “Wow factor”, when coupled with the right content (Music, graphics, video etc.) we can “move” the crowd.
4. If you were going to start over, what would you do differently?
If I was to start over I would have added more IT classes into my early studies. I was taught “analog” and studied the “digital”. Adding strong background in IT would have been a great foundation.
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5. Describe a typical work day for you. What are your daily disciplines?
My typical workday starts with my alarm at 5am. I check my email and social by and leave my house around 6am. I work for AV Helpdesk by I have been assigned by them to work onsite at a large pharmaceutical company. The customer site is about an hour and half away from my home. My drive to and from work is productive. I usually listen an online class while commuting or I take part in conference calls via Bluetooth.
When I arrive at work I meet with the site team to see if there were any emergency issues that need immediate attention. From there I go check with the Integrators that are working on campus installing and/or servicing the AV systems that AV Helpdesk designed. My workday concludes around 4-5pm with a 2 hour commute home. Satellite Radio and voice integration in my car has been a blessing for the amount of time I spend driving.
Once I get home I spend about 1-2 hours working on social. Having a routine is a necessary. It has helped me become a better AV consultant by making education and routine part of my schedule. Having a routine also helps me to continue to develop my online presence. Finally my routine also enforces that I take time to balance work/life.
6. Describe the apps and gear that you use daily which makes you more productive?
I use the following apps on a daily basis: Twitter, Google, YouTube, Slack, Skype, Instagram, LinkedIn and Outlook. I use them all throughout the day while working. It’s all about time management, notifications and having them all in sync.
My gear is fairly simple. I carry with me a Microsoft Surface Pro2, Samsung Note5 (Personal), Apple Iphone6S Plus (Work Cell), pair of earbuds, wireless mouse, 25 ft. tape measure, SPL meter, light meter and a 10000mAh portable charger.
7. You have pioneered in using social media to promote the Industry. What are the positives of being active there and what do you suggest to new users who want to take part.
My first real effort in Social Media was about 6 years ago. I started with LinkedIn as a way to build my professional profile and expand my industry contacts. Shortly after I started Blogging for AV publications. Once I started blogging I used Twitter to communicate with the audience. That quickly escalated my expansion into other social platforms such as Instagram, Snapchat and periscope. The key to social is the engagement.
Before I started on any of these platforms I researched them. I spent hours reading books and blogs about how people and businesses were using the various social platforms and how they work. Recently I have taken online courses to get a better understanding of the ever changing social media landscape. Now I have a few certification to add to my profile to go along with the various AV certifications on my resume.
I firmly believe that social media can and will be a huge part of any business going forward. It’s the “getting started” phase that scares many people.
Overall it’s been a great experience. Social media has added a whole new skillset to my career. It has consistently “opened doors”, but more importantly, it has started conversations with many industry peers all over the world.
Please drop your questions in the comments below and i will make sure that he sees them.
For more information about Christopher Neto , please find a few links.
Next week we will be featuring another AV Insider so please stay tuned.