Womenize! Wednesday Weekly is our weekly series featuring inspirational women from games and tech. Over the next weeks we will introduce five sHeroes from leading mobile game studio King. Starting with Associate Producer, Miriam Kasteleiner. Read more about Miriam in this interview:
Hey Miriam! You are an Associate Producer at King. Can you give us a little insight on what you do?
I’m currently leading a feature team in Candy Crush Jelly. It’s up to me to provide my team with all necessary information and resources, help them plan their current tasks or next project, collect their combined expertise and evaluations, and guide them in decision-making. I also take care of communication with everyone from outside of the team so I can prioritize requests and mute unnecessary noise. Apart from being responsible for the successful delivery of features, I am part of the leadership team that plans Jelly’s roadmap and maintains the game vision.
What do you personally think is the most important thing in order to establish a well-working team?
At King, we have a strong team culture that values individual responsibility over authoritative leadership. It’s important for me not to micromanage people in my team, but to trust them to take care of their self-assigned tasks and to let me know in case issues arise or estimations were not correct and we need to change the scope of a project or move a deadline to the next release. That only works, however, if people are mature enough to take on the responsibility that is given to them and to always keep each other in the loop about the process of a project. As the lead, I try to make sure that everyone can voice their opinion without being interrupted or discriminated against, no matter if they are loud or shy. It’s my job as a producer to know how the people in my team think or act and to take that into account when working with them. In addition to that, I believe in giving people candid feedback on their work performance so there won’t be any surprises in the end of the year talks and people have a chance to think about and act on possible improvements.
What kind of advice would you give to someone who is about to start their career in the games industry?
From my personal experience, I can only give advice to those who want to go into production (as producers, product owners or product managers): Be proactive and don’t be afraid to pursue your career, especially if you are a newcomer who has experience in a different field. Build up a supportive network around you that will share information, provide feedback and sanity-check your capabilities. Learn to trust your knowledge, experience and gut feeling. It’s essential that you develop resilience: Particularly women and non-binary people need to learn how to stop second-guessing their opinions and decisions when entering an industry that has largely been shaped and populated by men and a male way of thinking. During your job search, you will encounter minor and sometimes major setbacks: Don’t allow them to discourage you but pick yourself up again and keep pushing forward. If you find it difficult to show this can-do attitude that will help you get across obstacles, a job in production may not be what you’re looking for after all, as it’s an integral part of this craft to pull all available resources to find the solution to a problem.
Thank you for your insights Miriam!
WWW Feature by Anne Zarnecke