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Today’s guest is a virtual reality designer at Facebook and he shares the lessons he learned from a year long project that didn’t come to fruition. Plus, he shares his advice on the future of VR, how to sell a project at a big company and new design tools.
Gabriel Valdivia is VR Designer at Facebook.
Lessons From a Cancelled Project
Gabriel had a project that he spent a year working on and it was particularly close to him as it was born out of his own idea and he had put a lot of himself into it. He felt very attached to it but it didn’t see the light of day. When it was cancelled, he had to do a lot of introspection and the lessons he learned included learning to trust and embrace the product development process and to focus on relationships rather than products. You may think that you have the silver bullet to fix things but when you step back and look at the overall process, you will realize where you fit in and you can do a better job to be aligned with the overall outcome. Projects are never a one-man show so you need to development strong relationships with the people you work with. Codes become outdated but relationships last, so you need to invest on that. You also need to learn how to transition from selling mode to execution mode.
Selling an Idea
To sell an idea to get it developed is an accomplishment itself but outright, Gabriel advises not to sell them but if you do, he mentions that what he would do first to is work on ensuring that the idea will not be perceived as his own. Instead, he will make that idea infectious in a way that people will believe that these are now their own and thereby, there will be more people fighting to make that idea happen. He believes that if people think it’s only one person’s vision, they check out but if it’s the contrary, it’ll be more successful.
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