“I’ve always been a believer in the power of mentorship,” says Thamara Sekhar, the senior global brand manager at Electronic Arts (EA), who works on “The Sims” and “SimCity” franchise. Over the last year, Thamara has been a mentee in the PromaxGAMES program, where she has been paired with Kovel Fuller’s Jason Covey.
Her passion for games started long before her role at EA, when she studied consumer marketing while in business school.
Daily Brief Contributing Editor Kareem Taylor had the opportunity to catch up with Thamara on all things passion, mentorship and games and an edited transcript of that conversation follows:
DAILY BRIEF: How did you get this job?
I started at Electronic Arts about two and a half years ago. Before that, I was at Zynga, doing something very similar that I loved which was consumer mobile marketing in the gaming space. At Zynga, I was working on “Farmville,” another beloved franchise. So when the opportunity came to work at EA, I jumped on. EA was in a unique position being a leader in the gaming industry, and being at a very early stage of growth with their mobile portfolio. I’m working on brands like “The Sims” and “SimCity,” that have reached so many millions of people over the twenty plus years that its been around. But it was also an opportunity to capture the growth of mobile and the changing dynamics of platforms and where people go to game. From a consumer lens, as well as the opportunity, it resonated with me.
SEKHAR: Talk to me your involvement with PromaxGAMES and what your experience has been.
It’s been about a year since I first engaged with PromaxGAMES. It was perfect timing because I had just come back from maternity leave and I was going through this phase of trying to reintegrate into the workforce. It was almost like starting your first job again. You spend several months in this completely different world of changing diapers and being awake all night and now you’re back in the workforce. It was important for me to have some guidance, to have a support system of people that have either gone through it or that can support me in getting back and focused. I’ve been working with my mentor, Jason Covey of Kovel Fuller. Promax has guided that mentorship program along. I’ve always been a believer in the power of mentorship, and having people that will support you along this journey. You go through great moments and you go through tough moments, and it’s great to have a set of cheerleaders throughout that journey.
Any advice for someone who wants to do what you do?
When we’re hiring, we always look for passion for the product. What’s really important to me when I look at my career, and the jobs I’ve interviewed for is “Do I deeply care about what we’re making and can I see myself in the shoes of the consumer?” It’s very much like how an actor in a movie really needs to feel the role. They need to really internalize it. The rest will come naturally. Work on stuff you love and that you can think about every day.
You can hear Kareem and Thamara’s conversation in full in today’s episode of The Daily Brief Podcast:
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