YPDaily: Michael Gaudet

Michael Gaudet, a 28-year-old McGill graduate (and future MBA student at the University of Calgary), connects potential customers with the stock photography, video, audio and illustrations offered by iStockphoto/Getty Images and cites a major career milestone as presenting at the Google boardroom in San Francisco in today’s YPDaily…

Elevator Pitch: Describe your job in a nutshell.
(Short-elevator ride) I use the web to connect potential customers to our product – stock photography, video, audio and illustrations.

(Longer-elevator ride) I determine what websites we should advertise on, at what price it makes sense to be there and in what capacity (IE page-takeover or simple banner ad). After this point, I test and optimize these campaigns and report on the results.  I also look at new ways to leverage social media – such as Facebook Commerce, or ‘F-Commerce’.

Why did you start working at your company? What was the inspiration for this career route?
I started working at my company (iStockphoto/Getty Images) because I wanted be at a company that was purely online.  E-Commerce was the best part of my old job and I really tried to make it my entire job. iStock/Getty is one of the best names in town in this respect – lots of money goes through their website.

What is the best part of what you do on a day-to-day basis? The most challenging part?
It probably sounds cliché, but it’s for sure the people. Everyone is really bright and brings a passion to their jobs, which I find is contagious. Also, most of the people I work with share a similar lifestyle – weekends are spent hiking or checking out a new bar/restaurant, not going to Wal-Mart or just sitting around doing nothing.

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
In Calgary for sure – the mountains have a hold on me. It would be great if I could be in a position to help start-ups and small businesses grow – maybe helping to lead up a business incubator or consulting group.

What does success look like to you?
Success means the freedom to do what you want. To me, that doesn’t mean retiring by 40 or anything because I really do enjoy what I do. It basically means that I can do all of the things that I like to do as much as possible.

What is the most memorable milestone in your career?
In my (admittedly-short) career, I would have to say that the most memorable milestone would be speaking at the boardroom table in Google’s San Francisco office and not feeling intimidated in the slightest.

Do you have any advice for other young professionals?
The most important thing that a job can offer you is the ability to learn every day. If you aren’t getting it, leave immediately.

Do you support any charities? If so, which one(s) and why is that important to you?
I help out a number of charities and political parties with online marketing, social media and web design consulting. I have also recently volunteered to be a Big Brother.

What to you is notable?
Notable is being yourself and doing what you want to do – regardless of what expectations may be.

Blackberry, iPhone, Android, or Other?
iPhone (recently converted from Blackberry…)