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AT&T

Director of Content Innovation
  • AT&T
  • AT&T
  • AT&T
  • AT&T
Director of Content Innovation

AT&T

09.15-06.17

AT&T purchased DIRECTV. We became ronin.

Having no home gave us the freedom to work with and other departments like the AT&T Foundries, engineering, marketing, and entertainment. After our parent group was laid off, my team was extended for a six-month deep-dive into theoretical digital entertainment opportunities with an imagined TWE acquisition. We had done similar thought experiments at DIRECTV for other acquisitions (one being AT&T).

01

OPPORTUNITY

Create projects that show how a Fortune 10 telecom is relevant in a digital age.

02

SOLUTION

Created a variety of virtual and augmented experiences, built plans for acquisition of digital content.

03

RESOLUTION

Cutting-edge experiences and brave digital concepts for a not-so-distant future.

  • ESTABLISHED THE CONTENT INNOVATION TEAM

    Focused on how new technologies impact content production, delivery, consumption, and monetization

  • BUSINESS RESEARCH LEAD

    Examined new technology companies and products for investing and possible acquisition

  • FUN STUFF

    Created interactive user experiences for mobile, VR, and immersion deliveries

Role Skills Description
Manager Budgeting, Hiring Manager, Project Lead, Managed: Clients, 3rd Party & Cross-Silo Internal Teams The best way to build a project is the foundation first. Start with a good plan, and pack the right team around it.
Creative Pitch decks, Art design, Script Writer, Storyboard, Editor I conceive and design experiences for development, work closely with team members and provide support along every inch of the process.
Technical Research, Exploration, Development I need to know everything about a project and utilize my background as a futurist and developer to forge out-of-the-box content.

AT&T WAS GOOD TO ME

These learnings are not negative or positive, it is what I observed and am passing on.

SOCIAL:

If you are not constantly self-promoting you will fade away.

In large companies, it is easy to get lost in the shuffle, regardless of your level of talent.

When you are working on an interesting project, make sure as many people outside of your silo know about it as possible.

Most companies have internal promotion tools, dedicate 12-20% of your week to them.
Post smart quotes from your superiors and say how they were relevant, link to co-workers on other teams, post your successes.
I quote Tony Gonclaves, a lot.

For a large company to be successful it has to be run like a religion, and they reward zealots.
If you get to the executive level+ you need to complain about the company so you feel more genuine to the people working for you.

Yes, it’s a game.

LEVELING UP:

Your boss does not understand what you do.

Fortune 100 and higher is not about your work or the job you do, it is about appearance.
Teams are so bloated and talent is so feared that your actual work does not matter. This is your comfort.

Climbing corporate ladders require different skills than the jobs at those rungs.
Sarah Lyons is an expert of navigating corporate structures, she is (by far) AT&T's MVP.

Someone else will use your talent to get promoted. Let them, be nice, and move horizontally before you move up.

Transition out of the team immediately after your review. If you do not get an annual review, become a 3rd party contractor, and come back after a year to a different department.

Promises will 100% not happen. Be OK with that.

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