Philip Nelson is the Senior Vice President of Artist and Media Relations of NewTek, a company that is leading the way in live video production. He travels the world working with celebrity clients and participating in speaking and panelist engagements.
Career: Senior Vice President of Artist and Media Relations
Previous jobs: Server, Bus boy, Business Owner
Newtek is the company that started Desktop video. In the early 90’s they created the Video Toaster. They also created a 3D animation software that was used to produce movies like the Titanic, Avatar, and even the TV show the Walking Dead. Philips favorite technology by NewTek is the Tricaster, which is a television studio in a box. It is a box that you plug your camera into as well as a monitor, hook it up to the internet and you become a live television broadcaster. Some of the people that use that technology include MTV, Miss Universe, NBA, NHL, NFL, etc.
Philip Nelson has been with NewTek for about 16 years and started off as a sales rep. He worked his way up to the Director of Sales, then the VP of Marketing, then the VP of Sales, and now is the SVP of Artist and Media Relations. So now he is over NewTek’s social media, public relations, and artist relations. He deals with all of the high level, “A” list, VIP clients.
True relationships are built face to face”
He is on the road half of the time and at home half of the time as well.
Hardest part about what Philip does
They are on the bleeding edge of technology and working with some of the most high profile accounts on the planet like the X Games, Sports Illustrated, the Superbowl, and the NBA All Star Game. When you’re at those events and your rolling out new technology, there can be a high level of stress because you are breaking new ground. The hardest thing is dealing with “live event stress”.
On the flip side, the most exciting part is knowing that the technology that he is using is creating a show that will be watched by hundreds of thousands, if not millions of people.
Did Philip ever have a job that he didn’t enjoy?
You can be happy with anywhere you are. It’s really a choice.”
He has a lot of friends that are “successfully miserable” as they make a lot of money but they are not happy. He also has friends that have jobs that people would look down upon and they are happy people. Philip has never had a job where he wasn’t happy because he looked at each job as a building block. He believes that it it all about relationships. He notes that some of the most valuable training he ever received when it comes to relationship building was waiting tables, busing tables and working in the service industry.
His dad was influential as he is an entrepreneur who has an MBA and a mechanical engineering degree. Growing up he always saw him inventing things and starting businesses. When Philip was 15, he and his brother borrowed $5,000 from their dad and started a baseball card store in the local mall in Louisiana. His dad encouraged them to take chances.
Mark McCormack was also influential who created IMG, an international sport management company. He wrote a book called What They Still Don’t Teach You At Harvard Business School.
Richard Branson is another guy who Philip deems on of his “business heroes”. It admires the fact that Branson has built several billion dollar companies and he hasn’t let the businesses change him.
How to get started in the technology business
Philip suggests to be willing to take any job to get started. Also, be respectfully persistent. Philip sent in his resume to NewTek and they weren’t interested. He then called their HR department for every week for about 2 months until the lady agreed to get him an interview.
Don’t take no for an answer. Respectfully, keep the pressure on.
Tip to find a job you love
Work on yourself. If you are not getting the job that you want, you need to look at yourself and ask yourself what can you fix or what can you get better at. Perhaps you could wait tables for 6 months to improve your relationship skills. Philips says it is almost like paying to go to boot camp.
How to get in touch with Philip