May 6, 2024

API | Employee Spotlight: Songthan Lam

Songthan Lam
Producer, Analytics

Based in Austin, Producer Songthan Lam shares what you should never be afraid of, how her parent’s story of courage and adaptability is deeply connected to her work today – and how her love for CSR Racing started long before her career at Zynga.

What was your career path to Zynga?

It may be surprising to some, but analytics is what brought me to Zynga! I have a mathematics and business educational background and have worked in project management for industries such as biotech, aerospace, and transportation. While I love working for a company that builds games and brings joy to our players, ultimately our strong Analytics and Production disciplines are what persuaded me over!

What’s the best advice you can give to someone who just started their career?

Don’t be afraid of failure. It’s tempting to strive for perfection in the first try, but the reality of that happening every single time is very slim. The greatest mistake you can make is to be afraid you will make one.

Are there any games or products that you’ve been involved with that hold a special place in your heart?

Although I was not directly involved with this game (as it was before my time), CSR Racing will always have a special place in my heart. My now husband introduced me to the game when we were college students, and I was hooked! It brought us closer as we played it side-by-side in those days.

How does Zynga’s mission – to connect the world through games – shape the company culture?

We receive so much encouragement to be connected with one another whether we’re remote, connected to an office, or working with global teams. Zynga is fantastic at finding opportunities for us to build meaningful relationships through mutual interests and shared activities within and outside our teams. Nothing brings people closer than karaoking with some good food and drinks!

What do you enjoy most about working here?

The people! Totally unbiased opinion, but I work with some of the most brilliant, amazing, and supportive people in the industry. One question we always keep in mind is ‘What will our players thank us for?’ and we show up everyday to deliver the best games and experiences we can.

Tell us about joining ZAPI (Zynga Asians & Pacific Islanders) and what the group has brought to you and your career?

ZAPI was one of the first organizations I joined when I started at Zynga! I was ecstatic to take on a bigger role within the group and plan the Mid-Autumn Festival Celebration for my location late last year as my first major contribution. Although Asians and Pacific Islanders can trace their origins back to over 40 different countries, I believe we are connected by similar experiences and challenges that are unique to our group. Therefore, I am passionate about building closer connections within the ZAPI community.

How do you recognize and celebrate this heritage month?

During AAPI Heritage Month, I celebrate by bringing awareness and supporting local API businesses. Last year my brother gifted me with the Family Style: Austin Asian Restaurant Passport. This booklet allowed us to celebrate and support local Asian-owned restaurants, bars, and makers while raising funds to help marginalized Asian Central Texans get the healthcare they need and deserve. Although I’m not aware of a 2024 edition, I’m excited for the annual CelebrASIA Austin event to celebrate my local community!

How has your cultural background influenced your career journey?

I am the daughter of two Vietnamese immigrants whose lives were upended after the war. They left behind everything they’d ever known to journey to America – family, friends, shared language, familiar food – and rebuilt their lives later in life (think late-30’s to mid-40’s). Through their experience, they imparted with me the wisdom of resilience and adaptability. As I work in production, our role is to provide predictable quality. Our project priorities and timelines may change, but it is through adaptability that I am able to ensure predictable quality for the stakeholders.