In Jam City’s “Employee Spotlight” series, we are highlighting the diverse and exceptional talent here at Jam City.
Meet Vanessa Rouhani, Jam City’s VP, Publishing. Vanessa and her publishing team are largely responsible for the active presence Jam City games have in the app stores and other digital platforms.
What drew you to Jam City?
I was drawn to Jam City’s entrepreneurial spirit and the opportunity to be a part of their growth. The company had already experienced great success but still possessed the grit and tenacity of a startup company.
Describe your role on the team.
I oversee the Publishing department that manages Jam City’s relationship with platform partners, like Apple, Google, Facebook, and Amazon. I like to think of my role as the central point of contact between platform partners and Jam City’s game teams. In addition to helping our games get exposure on the App Store and Google Play, we also work with platform partners to help test and provide feedback on new technology, tools, and services, like the recent partnership with Google for Panda Pop’s Instant version of the game. These initiatives help position Jam City as a top gaming partner.
What sets Jam City apart from other mobile gaming companies?
At some companies, teams are very siloed, but Jam City does an excellent job of encouraging cross-collaboration across different teams. Despite having our own responsibilities, the Publishing team works closely with many internal teams, including Product Marketing, Product Management, Production, and more. At Jam City, we’re all working towards the same goal and it’s often helpful to get a fresh perspective on different initiatives.
Can you speak to how Jam City’s leadership team operates?
The leadership team at Jam City is extremely supportive. They respect our teams and see value in the way we build them. They’re trusting enough to grant us autonomy, making a lot of the initiatives that the Publishing team — and others — are working on, easier to implement.
Do you consider yourself a gamer?
I always said, “I’m not a gamer,” and that I just stumbled into a career in gaming. But when I look back on my life, I have always been a gamer. I played Mario; I played Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles on NES; I loved Sonic and Crash Bandicoot. I even got into PC gaming in high school and played Heroes of Might and Magic and Mechwarrior — I laugh when I say that because it’s so not me! As I got older and had less free time, I started playing casual puzzle games, where I could compete against friends. That’s why I was so happy to join Jam City — our games were made for me!
What advice would you give employees on how to succeed in their field?
First and foremost, realize that passion is contagious. It’s so important to love what you do because it’s reflected in your work. Secondly, always trust your intuition — don’t be afraid to voice your opinion because sometimes you may have the only right answer. Lastly, celebrate your failures as much as your wins. If you don’t speak up, it’s a missed opportunity for growth.