WordStream Employee Spotlight: Patrick Henry Carrera
WordStream has some impressive employees in our ranks: from industry influencers to marathon runners, from analysts to authors. The Employee Spotlight series aims to highlight the talented individuals who work here. Each month, we’ll be featuring an interview here on the blog and on our social accounts.
For this month’s Employee Spotlight, we talked with Patrick Henry Carrera. As the marketing analyst here at WordStream, Patrick Henry tracks our metrics daily and helps provide the data processing power behind projects, like the Google Ads Mobile Benchmarks.
Originally from the Boston area, Patrick Henry graduated from McGill University with a Bachelor of Commerce in marketing. He joined WordStream about a year ago, bringing his data analysis expertise, his enduring loyalty to David’s Tea, and his unparalleled sneaker game.
How did you hear about WordStream? Why did you want to work here?
I hadn’t heard anything about WordStream before applying, but I saw this job posting and it seemed perfect. Then I visited the offices and heard so much about the business. I thought the industry was really cool and I thought what WordStream was doing was great. The size of the company, the culture, and everything, it seemed like kind of a great place to work. The interview was nice. I loved all the people I interviewed with. We talked for a long time, and recently Laura has said to me, “You know, you said some weird things in your interviews.” I don't remember all of it exactly, but I kept telling everyone I wanted to have a dog the same size as me. I forgot I told everyone that in the interview. They asked me to share a personal dream. That is my personal dream.
What's your favorite project that you've worked on here at WordStream?
My favorite project was redoing the website reporting. When I first came here, it was a document and a spreadsheet. The spreadsheet was filled with individual rows of data, and the document was just a written response to the individual rows. It was very old fashioned, but I had a lot of freedom in improving it. I really liked expanding it and creating a more automated online system full of visualizations that are interactive and looked into more of the data at our disposal.
Everyone told me to try what I thought was best -- they said they’d tell me if they didn’t like it but to try. And that was really great. I remember at other companies every time I had an idea, it would have to be approved by a million people and half of them would forget, so it always got buried. But redoing the website reporting here was really nice. I really got a chance try to improve the process.
Here's an example. This table compares the week to week amount of first actions brought in by our various lead sources. For each source it pulls the amount of first actions for each of the weeks being compared, the difference week over week, the percentile growth week over week, and the lead sources share of total first actions for each week. My favorite thing about this table is that it sums up a lot of what happened week over week in one visualization and the end user can sort by any column header for their own analysis.
What's the most challenging project that you've worked on here at WordStream?
I'd say the most challenging project I worked on was a landing page reporting issue. I created this Excel workbook that would help me split up and aggregate the landing pages could separate the page from all of the additional tags appended to the page path to properly track sessions and goal completes. Anson, an engineer at WordStream, taught me Python, and through that I was able to create a text passing script. Eventually it worked. It improved the accuracy greatly, and that means a lot to me.
What's the best thing you’ve learned on the job?
Besides Python, that would be Tableau. WordStream paid for me to take classes and attend a conference so that I could learn as much as possible. Now we're going to be moving to Tableau for website reporting. That’ll be my next challenge.
What’s the first thing you do when you get to work each morning?
Drink a glass of tea. After that, I refresh our ongoing metrics that display on our TV dashboard.
What’s your workspace aesthetic like? Minimalist? Homey? Neat?
It's usually messy. I’ve got David’s Tea cannisters all over the place. Underneath the desk is the best shoe game on the East Coast. But the top of my desk? It's a mess. I like having all my notes within eyesight so it's all causally percolating in my brain all the time. That's how I write my notes, too. I shove as much as I can into one view or one page so that I learn it. Then every time I see the view again it reminds me of all of the concepts.
You need to put your head down and get some work done right away. Do you have a go-to song or sound?
I definitely listen to music or a podcast if I need to focus. If I really need to focus, it's either classical music or battle rap. Jedi Mind Tricks is my favorite.
If WordStream announced a last-minute day off tomorrow, what would you do with your free day?
So this actually happened to me a few months ago. I came into work and thought everyone was at a company meeting or something. Then I saw one random guy, and I asked if the office was open. He said no.
Most days off I like to sleep in, though. I’m a bit of an insomniac. I never actually get sleep so sleeping is the most luxurious thing to me. It's the happiest thing in the world when you wake up and then you can go back to sleep knowing that you don’t have anything to do.
If you didn't work in marketing, what would you want to do?
I became a data analyst because I really liked the math, the logical thinking, and the visualizations. I did used to be a graphic designer, and I almost went to art school. I did mostly vector design, a lot of illustrator and cartoon images. The largest thing I ever did I was in Guatemala working for a nonprofit that released an operating system. It was all open source, and they had all these educational programs developed by professors from all around the world comprised into one operating system. It was amazing – the education was better than what I received as a kid, and I had a very good school system.
What’s the first concert you ever went to?
Ratatat. I was 16.
What was the last movie you saw in theaters?
Ocean’s 8. My friend has been really into those fancy movie theaters so we went there and ordered food and drinks. It’s a lot of fun. Yeah. You press a button, and they deliver you wine, and you feel like a big shot.
Do you have any talents or hobbies?
I collect basketball shoes. I love the NBA. I've been a basketball fan for about eight years, and every year I realized I didn’t understand the game as well the year before. There are just so many micro things that happen in each play, and the story builds on through the quarters. Basketball also has the best portfolio of body art in the world, in my opinion. One of my other hobbies is designing my own tattoos. I am very into body art, and I like to have consultations with my tattoo artist to go over the design.
Those are the reason I love basketball so much: it's a team sport and an individual sport at the same time, the players have amazing body art, and it's a lot about attitude and different things like that, including great shoes.