Meeting Phil Spencer - Head of XBOX
by Caitlin Goodale
Role: Graphic Designer – Lift London
University Course: Computer Arts BA at – Abertay University
Anand and I are interns at Lift London, a first party games studio within Microsoft. There are six interns in Lift, and 13 in the office in total. We were lucky enough to be visited last week by Phil Spencer, head of Xbox. Phil was kind enough to spend some time talking to the interns- a great networking and education industry for those of us who had only otherwise seen him on stage at events like E3!
Phil started at Microsoft in 1988, as an intern himself! Though a software developer by trade, he went into management, eventually working as the general manager for Microsoft Games Studios EMEA before becoming the head of Xbox. He is a prolific industry figure with an ongoing passion for games and now one of the major faces in gaming.
The purpose of Phil’s visit
Phil was in our office to see how everyone was doing – I personally help prep his visit!
Before our pitch Phil gave a talk to the whole of Lift London and Soho Productions, talking about his place in the structure of the business and where he sees games as a whole moving forward in the future.
The floor was then opened to QA, and myself and others were able to pitch our questions – any questions – to be answered. The surprise came when at the end, when he was being called away to a meeting with other SLT members, he asked if the interns were here and proceeded to have a 10 minute conversation with us all, for us to ask about his career path, progression and tips for our own internships.
It was a great conversation for us all, and an opportunity not afforded to many outside of the intern program. It reiterated how important the intern programs internationally are to ELT members- indeed we were able to teach Phil something of how it is run in the UK! Overall it was a great experience, and hopefully we’ll be having him back soon.