What was your previous experience or interaction with Lucasfilm and its releases?
I wasn’t as big of a Star Wars fan as I was an Indiana Jones fan. I love, love, love Indiana Jones! My father loved it, and that was something we connected with when I was a child. We’d go to Blockbuster and rent the VHS to watch over and over again. So, Indiana Jones was my introduction to Lucasfilm. When I got here, I was so excited about it. But I learned a lot more about the reach of Lucasfilm and Industrial Light & Magic. I hadn’t realized the companies had a hand in tons of movies I’d loved. How lucky am I?
Do you have a favorite film in the Indiana Jones series?
I love all of them, but if I had to choose, I’d pick Raiders of the Lost Ark. That was the first one I saw. I wasn’t born when it first released, but my father introduced me to it when I was young. We’d watch it around Christmas time each year. It was our holiday movie. Other people watched Home Alone, but we watched Raiders of the Lost Ark! It opened up my love for movies.
Returning to your work, do you have a favorite part of your job here?
The facilitation of learning experiences is where I find the most energy and passion. I light up in a room, and get jazzed from having a group of people to share ideas with, get perspectives from, and find solutions together. I love being able to tap into the knowledge in the room and have good dialogue. We can talk about people’s stories and share best practices. Even if someone walks into the room thinking they knew everything, someone else in the room can tell them something they don’t know. I love those “a-ha” moments and helping people have them. My manager, Danielle sometimes says that my classes are like therapy, and I love that! People can share freely and talk about their issues and have help to find solutions.
Thinking about leadership, are they any qualities or strengths in leaders that you think are worth emphasizing?
A good leader is empathetic; a good leader is transparent. That combination of relating to people, being open to them, and communicating an idea well, which means you have to understand it yourself, is one I’ve seen be very effective. But there are lots of ways. One quote I like comes from a man named Zig Ziglar, who said, “Good leadership is like a good omelet. It starts with an egg.” All of this amazing stuff goes into an omelet, but it starts with the first egg, that person who takes something small and makes it into something bigger.
Beyond the general qualifications, are there any skills or attributes that you think are important to your specific role?
I think a good facilitator is one who reads a room and reads people very well. It’s one thing to articulate yourself or entertain people, but to be able to see what people need even though they’re not saying it out loud is a sign of a good facilitator.
You often hear about the difference between introverts and extroverts. A lot of people think that I’m an extrovert because when I come into a room, I am a performer, but I actually have an introverted preference. I’ve found that being a source of knowledge and guidance in the room is a passion of mine, but my inclination is to be alone in silence, thinking. A lot of people have to find out how to do their job effectively even though it’s not their natural inclination. That’s something I’ve had to master over the years.
Have you had any favorite experiences so far?
Visiting the ILM London campus was very special. Everyone there was so warm, welcoming, and receptive. That’s one of my favorite memories.
What advice would you give to those aspiring to join Lucasfilm?
I would tell them, “perfect your story.” Storytelling is at the core of who we are and what we do at Lucasfilm, and a compelling story will set you apart from other applicants. Your story can be the ups and downs of your career journey, your greatest accomplishments, or even the steps you are taking to create the future you desire. Whatever it is, don’t be afraid to share your most authentic self. Uniqueness and authenticity are valued here, so don’t be afraid to share the most genuine version of you.