Welcome to our recurring column, Meet Our Team, where we spotlight some of the integral members of the Casting Networks team who are dedicated to keeping our platform running smoothly and efficiently for our customers and clients. For our fourth installment, we speak with Yossi Langer, Senior Vice President of Partnerships and Business Development. Learn what drove Yossi to pursue a career in business development, what he loves most about working at Casting Networks, what he is excited to work on this year and more!
1. What is your role at Casting Networks?
I get to spend my days exploring what Talent Systems should be doing next — what products or markets or companies we should be partnering with or exploring or expanding into. I help evaluate what we could be doing, and then once we start something new I get to help run those efforts while they’re still fledgling.
2. What is your favorite part of your job?
I have a great job because it’s so varied. One day I get to hang out with casting directors in India and the next I get to create financial projections or brainstorm partnership opportunities with startups. I’m really lucky to have a job that uses a lot of different parts of my brain.
3. What are you most excited about working on this year?
We’re making great progress in Latin America through our partnership with Telemundo, and I’m really excited about how our team on the ground is quickly scaling up our business there and getting lots of new casting directors, agents and talent onto Casting Networks. Casting in the Spanish-speaking world is so exciting and we see cross-border casting as a huge growth area. We also recently announced the acquisition of the unscripted casting platform that was originally built by eTribez, and we have big plans for that software. There’s a lot of other cool stuff coming up the pike, too — watch this space.
4. What are some interesting areas you get to focus on at Casting Networks that you didn’t in previous roles?
It’s all new and it’s all interesting! While I’ve worked in entertainment before, the world of casting specifically was new to me when I joined Casting Networks, and it’s a world I’ve come to love — the big personalities, the creativity and the passion are electrifying.
5. What’s something interesting or unexpected about your role that people would be surprised to know?
I’m constantly delighted by the new ways that people have found to make the work of casting and being cast easier. You might think that casting is casting, but the amount of variation in norms among markets and even among casting directors can be really surprising. There are so many small companies that have jumped up to make life easier for actors and people working in entertainment — it’s a great industry for entrepreneurs.
6. What drove you to pursue a career in partnerships and business development?
I jumped from UX design to strategy because it seemed like a broader canvas for the work that excites me. Before I was designing how applications should work; now I’m designing how businesses could work.
7. Tell us about a mentor or person who inspired you to get to where you are today.
Arne Jokela hired me as an intern at America Online’s Digital City New York site in the early days of the internet after I stayed up all night before the interview trying to learn HTML. (Later he told me that my code was terrible, but as an English major he thought I’d at least be able to fix other people’s spelling.) We worked together at American Express a few years later, and then went on to co-run a startup together. He taught me the value of a rigorously short to-do list, how to simplify communication in a way that electrifies people and the importance of honoring unspoken commitments to your colleagues.
We are proud to showcase our diverse, talented and creative employees across the globe. Stay tuned for our next installment to meet more of our team!
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