This project was hard for me. Coming from an industrial project management background, transitioning to the role of video game producer was challenging. My understanding of management was rooted in training I received at business school, and in working on physical, industrial, engineering projects. I was used to functioning in an entirely different environment and interacting with teams in an entirely different manner.
I found that there is a fundamental ideological difference between the way I had managed people in the past and the way I needed to function in my role as producer. I learned that there were several important distinctions between bad managers and good producers:
· Have subordinates who work to meet their personal goals
· Serve the goals of the organization selfishly
· Are ego-driven in their pursuits
· Serve their team members
· Work for the product and for the team
· Suspend selfish ambition and ego
As I struggled with the difference, I came to the realization that I couldn’t go from being a bad manager to being a good producer overnight. I needed help. I talked with my Stakeholders, with my mentors, with my friends, and with my colleagues. I asked these people whom I trusted to hold me accountable and to help me grow into the producer and coworker I needed to be.
Over the following weeks and months, I grew – not only from a manager into a producer – but as a person as well. I learned to relate more positively to my teammates, to listen rather than to speak, and to evaluate the emotional impact of my interactions with my team members. While the change was not overnight, I constantly sought new avenues for growth. This self-improvement was validated as I slowly regained trust with those around me and became a member and leader of the team once more.