February FableFriday: Adam Landry, Executive Vice President


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Crank up “Sweet Caroline,” would you? Boston loves their Red Sox and if there was any doubt about the Number One Red Sox Fan at FableVision, then you haven’t met our executive vice president Adam Landry.  

“How do you feel about the Yankees?” we asked one day.

“Wait, is this the start of a joke?” Adam replied. “I’m very much your stereotypical Red Sox fan. Hate the Yankees. Love Derek Jeter. Can’t stand A-Rod. Wish Mariano Rivera played for us. What else?”

As a key member of our executive team, Adam brings his insight and business acumen to FableVision.  Balancing business development, marketing, and operations, he helps run the show at FableVision Studios. And yep, you guessed it, we’re going to make a sport analogy: build your team right and they’ll perform. FableVision is proof of that, and as one of our head coaches, Adam has been instrumental in building and guiding the great FableVision team. So, grab a cup of coffee, it’s time to head to the dugout and meet Adam.

Give us a glimpse into your life before FableVision, did someone say Wonder Bread?
Ha! I’m sure someone did. I grew up in Natick and will never forget the sweet smell of the Wonder Bread bakery beside the Natick Mall. My dad worked at Wonder Bread for my entire life, so of course I had to see what all the fuss was about. My first job was as Freddy the Fresh Guy – dressed up as a giant loaf of bread, handing out mini-loaves and inadvertently scaring the daylights out of little children at some supermarket grand opening in Framingham. I was promoted to Twinkie the Kid a few days later and never really looked back. I spent summers loading trucks. When I finished college I entered the management-training program and spent the next five years traveling to and working at a number of different bakeries in the U.S.

After Wonder Bread, I spent a couple of years working in the public sector, and was eventually given an opportunity to join a small staffing firm in Needham. There I got a taste for running a small business. Around this time, my wife Annmarie and I were raising our family, and I was introduced to Peter and Paul Reynolds. When I helped Paul Reynolds run his campaign for Selectman in Dedham, I really got to know them well.  A year or so later had a chance to join the fun full time.

In a small business, you need to wear a lot of different hats. You’re the head of finance, but you also help steer marketing, operations, and business development. Any tips on staying organized?
This is a good one – something I think about pretty often. I’m always on the lookout for the best tools for organization and time management – habits and gadgets. I’ve read some books and checked out some apps, and we do a lot of best practice sharing here in the Studio. Right now I’m all about the Google. I’ve found a pretty good system using a combination of Gmail, Calendar, Google Now, Google Keep, and my Moto 360. Most important though is a really, really good team – just the right amount of nudging, reminding, supporting, and most of all, being there for each other.

Can you share a learning experience you’ve had at FableVision?
One thing I’ve learned from hanging out with Peter, Paul, and Gary is business is a lot more fun when you’re kind and respectful. FableVision is the best company in the world and our projects and clients are truly remarkable – but every organization faces adversity now and then. When this happens the executive team at FableVision handles these situations professionally, respectfully, and courteously. For close to 20 years that’s how business at FableVision is done. Ask anyone and they’ll tell you – FableVision is run by good people. Because of how carefully FableVision chooses its employees, clients, partners, and vendors – everyone that makes the business tick – things work out. I love that.

What are your favorite types of projects the Studio works on?
Every once in a while, we will be given an opportunity to participate in the full life of a project – our team participates in the architecture and planning, will take the lead on early design (both technical and art), manage all phases of development, and support the launch and deployment. These are my favorite projects. The projects where our whole team is involved – creative, technical, art and animation, and even our whiz-bang marketing group – all wrangled by a project management team that is truly the best in the industry.

When we get the opportunity to participate so fully, we get organizational support and excitement for the project that is really energizing, and gives us a chance to develop some very strong and long lasting partnerships with our clients.

You are a dad of six and very active in their lives, how do you balance work and family?
Peter, Paul, and Gary give folks at FableVision the opportunity for “work/life integration.” Thanks to a wife and children that are equally flexible, this works very well for me and my family. I am lucky that I can be present in the events that are happening in their lives, and never really "off grid" for work stuff. That flexibility, combined with a team that is incredibly smart and hard working, allows a chance to balance it all out – at least on paper.

You love attending sporting events with your kids. Any standout memories?
I’ve been to so many great events – it was great to see the Patriots beat the Eagles in Jacksonville (and brush past Bill Clinton and George Bush); went to an NBA Finals game with Gary that the Celtics won in overtime…but the greatest was Game 1 of the 2013 World Series. I was able to take my sons, Evan and Alex, to the game [pictured below] – the first World Series game for all of us. Baseball has been a big part of my life – I started playing when I was eight and still play now, and have great fun coaching the boys.

Tell us about the Pan Mass Challenge. Why do you ride?
I started riding in 2009, when a good friend of mine called and basically said, “Too many people we know and love are being affected by cancer…let’s join the fight.” In the six years that I’ve been riding, I’ve experienced so many incredible emotions – sorrow for people I love that have lost those closest to them; joy for people I love that have been diagnosed and, after treatment, seem to have the upper hand; anxiety for people I love that are right in the middle of their fight. I’m always amazed at what they do at Dana Farber, and hope that the little bit I’m able to do helps.

Favorites:

Way to take your coffee: Frozen with hot fudge and whipped cream
Day trip to do with your family: Bike ride on the Cape Cod Rail Trail – part of our annual summer camping trip,
State: Massachusetts for sure. I’ve lived in a few others and visited many. Massachusetts is unlike any other. I wouldn’t raise a family anywhere else.
Vacation spot: Disney World
Snack food: Chips ’n’ salsa and Bugles.
Movie: Oceans 11 (the remake)
Actor: Brad Pitt. Right?
TV Show: Modern Family
Book series: I think I'm more of a one off guy. I love to mix in a good business book now and then too. Good to Great is on the shelf and referred to often, and I love Patrick Lencioni’s business “fables.”

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