He’s making a list, checking it twice…but is that list for presents or IT supplies? One of Premier’s employees moonlights as a professional Santa during the holiday season. We interviewed Sean Gatto of Premier’s ITS team and got the inside scoop on everything from Santa training to his favorite Christmas cookies. Check out the Q&A below to find out more!
Q: Sean, what is your role at Premier?
A: I work on the ITS team on the service desk at Premier.
Q: How long have you been a professional Santa Claus?
A: I’ve been a professional Santa for over 15 years now.
Q: How did you get started?
A: Well, I was in the military and living overseas. I helped start up a Toys for Tots program over there and for it we needed somebody to be Santa…well, guess who my boss gave the job to? I was the low man on the totem pole so I got to be Santa.
Q: Did you have to go through any job training?
A: I did a one-day training course and became certified through an organization.
Q: What do you like most about being Santa?
A: I love giving back to the community and helping to keep the Christmas spirit alive. When you see the joy on a kid’s face, their eyes just light up…well, that’s what it’s all about.
Q: Is there a special place that you get your Santa outfit?
A: I usually get my outfits on different websites online. I’ve picked up hints from other Santas over the years. The only bad thing is that I have to get it dry cleaned constantly!
Q: How have you advertised your Santa services?
A: I’ve promoted a bit through social media, made a “Rent a Santa” sign, a lot of word of mouth referrals…I do a lot of parties around the holidays. I have 23 parties this year!
Q: What does it take to be a good Santa? Do you need any special qualities?
A: Well, you definitely have to be outgoing and personable. You have to love people and truly love what you’re doing or there is no point. And don’t just show up unprepared. Before you go to the gig, spend some time reading up on the family or organization that you’re visiting. It makes a huge difference.
Q: How are the reindeer doing this year?
A: The reindeer are doing great! Cupid, Comet, Blitzen, Rudolph…they’re all ready! When I get on my sleigh at nighttime, I make sure to fill it with extra carrots for them to keep them happy and healthy.
Q: What’s your favorite type of Christmas cookie?
A: I have to have a lot of them, but I try to keep my slim figure. But I’d have to go with chocolate chip with a nice, cold glass of milk!
From Santa Sean and the rest of our Premier team, we wish you a very happy holiday season!