How I Work: Mike D’Avria, Owner of Charlotte Information Strategists

How I Work: Mike D’Avria, Owner of Charlotte Information Strategists
  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • Share by Email
  • Share on Twitter
  • Share on Facebook
  • Share by Email

(Note: Our How I Work series is brought to you by AccruePartners – building people, companies and careers by being at the forefront of the staffing and executive search industry).

Office location:

Industry Coworking at the AvidXchange Music Factory

Job Title:

Owner of Charlotte Information Strategists where we help businesses tell their story.


Honda Ridgeline truck I’ve had for 10 years. 15-20 minutes

What do you do during your commute?

I’m always listening to one of the eight Ringer podcasts that I subscribe to, or WTF Podcast with Marc Maron. Except for when my mom tells me she hasn’t heard from me in a week or so. Then I talk to her on the phone.

Phone Type:

iPhone 6


Desk photo:



iMac 27-inch with 5K Retina Screen. It’s obnoxiously big, but it was more cost effective to get the biggest screen in order to get the corrects specs I need for video editing.

Gadgets you can’t live without:

Professionally: Zoom H5n Portable Audio Recorder. No one wants to watch video that has terrible audio.
Personally: Roku Streaming Stick. I have one for every single TV I own.

Do you listen to music while you work?

I listen to music when I am not editing video. I’ve had a Rhapsody account (they changed their name to Napster recently). It’s still amazing to me that I can basically listen to any song ever made at anytime I want.

What software are you a power user of?

Final Cut Pro X is something I use professionally every day. Keynote for Mac is something I am an extreme power user of. I can do things with Keynote that most people have no idea the software is capable of. You know how Banksy can do things with spray paint that make people awestruck? I’m like that with Keynote.

What’s your favorite spot for a business lunch? Your order?

The Liberty off S. Blvd. If the person I am meeting is a new client then I usually go with whatever the special is or maybe the fish & chips. If I already have a good relationship with the person I am eating with then I get their Pimento Cheese Crunch Burger which has homemade potato chips on it. It’s just way too messy to eat in front of a stranger.

Social media habits:

Facebook, Facebook, and Facebook. I’ve lived in a bunch of different places and my friends live all over the world. It’s the best for keeping up with what everyone is doing.

To-do list manager:

Reminders on iPhone. I keep it simple and like that it easily syncs to every device.

What everyday thing are you really good at?

Cooking. People are surprised that I do the majority of the cooking in our household. I’m Italian and grew up watching my mom cook. It boggles my mind when I learn that someone doesn’t know how to cook.

What’s your one favorite thing about your job?

Although I do some of the same tasks every day (shooting video, interviewing people, editing video, etc.) I love how diverse my clients are. Some days I spend shooting video of amazing speakers at my regular event shoots like PitchBreakfast, Skookum Tech Talks, and BIG Council meetings; the next day I’m shooting a Kickstarter campaign video for an electronics manufacturer in China, and the following day I’ll be interviewing people at a local non-profit for videos to be shown at a fundraising event. Each day is new and exciting.

Best time-saving shortcut or Charlotte life hack:

Don’t even try to park on levels 1 or 2 of any parking deck in Charlotte. Even if you see an open space, don’t take it! Just drive immediately to the third level or higher. There will literally be hundreds of open spaces and no one is fighting over them.

Sleep routine:

I’ve always gone to bed very late, usually past midnight even on days that I have early morning videos shoots.

Where do you go around Charlotte to get away from the office?

I play ice hockey at Pineville Icehouse two days a week. I learned to play at 33-years-old. It’s my absolute favorite thing to do.

What did you eat for breakfast this morning?

Homemade Egg McMuffin with turkey sausage

If you weren’t doing your current job, what would you be doing?

Marketing at a non-profit or a startup.

Best job advice you’ve received:

“If you’re good at something, never do it for free.” – Joker in The Dark Knight

Last book you read (grade it on a A-F scale):

A Bad Case of Stripes during bedtime for my 5-year-old daughter Olive. (B+ because it isn’t too long)

Last movie you watched (grade it on a A-F scale):

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story (B) I really liked it, but didn’t absolutely love it.

What’s one thing people don’t know about Charlotte that they should?

The new(ish) hourly lot at the airport is free for the first hour! You can actually park and wait for arriving passengers without having to deal with the absolute horrible congestion caused by people picking up at baggage claim.

Is there anything else that we didn’t ask that you’d like to tell our readers?

How would I improve traffic congestion in Charlotte? Good question! First, anyone who gets off at an exit on 485 just to get right back on to bypass standstill traffic have to take a 12-hour course on how this causes more traffic. Second, people who take photos of Lake Norman while driving on I-77 should be arrested.

What other Charlottean would you like to answer these questions?

Russ Hammond, Director of Growth at Sureshot Labs. He has a more effective way of doing any task than anyone else.

Story Views:
Join the 47,849 smart Charlotteans that receive our daily newsletter.
"It's good. I promise." - Ted   Ted Williams