by Conlan Spangler
One of the benefits of a connected world is, when it comes to work, your geographic location matters less and less. For Nick Gundry, marketing technologist at Sailthru, Fresno provides a welcoming community—both online and off—while he works for a New York-based company.
Nick grew up near London and studied Art History at Leeds Metropolitan University. As his education progressed, he says, “I ended up looking at very few paintings and spent more time studying the psychology of how people view art, advertising, and film. I loved exploring how much thought and experimentation goes into presenting an image or message to the viewer.”
He met his wife while at university and, after getting married, the pair moved several times between Portland, Fresno, Sacramento, and London. Eventually, they settled in Fresno again in 2002. Nick worked as a web developer before joining the staff at Fresno Pacific University as associate director of interactive media.
Last year, he accepted a position at Sailthru. Sailthru uses a variety of technologies—email, web, mobile apps, and more—to help companies connect and communicate with customers on an individual level. As a marketing technologist, Nick has a range of duties.
“I prototype new product ideas or sketch out features I think might be useful or profitable,” he explains. His team, he says, is “out on the edges looking for new opportunities for product features or partnerships.”
Although Sailthru is based in New York City, Nick remains in Fresno and works remotely. The transition from a physical office to a virtual one was daunting at first, but Nick soon adapted to the change. He now uses the Hashtag as his primary workspace.
“It has really helped that the membership [at the Hashtag] has been growing,” he says. “It’s much more like a place I want to be when working, rather than ‘the place I go to work’. It’s a great space.”
He makes regular trips to the office in New York where he is able to connect with his coworkers. The rest of the time he relies on email, phone, instant messaging, Skype, and IRC chat to work remotely.
Nick has adjusted to his new online workflow, and over the years he has adjusted to Fresno, too.
“I’ll be honest,” he says. “I hated Fresno when I got here. It was difficult coming from a major city. It took me about four or five years before I got settled. What changed it for me was the people—in fact, it was through social media. I got over my shyness and started connecting with people and things changed. There’s some really smart, good people in this city, and if it wasn’t for them—all of them—I’d still be miserable. People are important. If you don’t have people you can truly call friends around you, it doesn’t matter where you live.”