August 12, 2020

Employee Profile – Betty Le Bon

Betty is BossAlien’s indomitable Art Director overseeing the Character Team. She brings deep experience and a keen perspective, gained over more than 11 years in the games industry, to keep all aspects of character concept, modeling, and animation on track and in top shape.

Betty embodies BossAlien’s passion and values towards reflecting diverse inclusion across the industry and within our games, and is a champion of fostering a studio where everyone feels respected and empowered.

Read on to learn more about Betty, and her experience working at one of NaturalMotion’s Brighton, UK studio!

What is your role within BossAlien and how did you get here?

My name is Betty Le Bon and I’m an Art Director here at BossAlien.

I currently direct the Character Art team, including concept, modelling and animation. Before joining the team in January 2019, I worked as an Associate Art Director for EA on another Star Wars title, and on Simpsons Tapped Out.

Tell us how you came to Join BossAlien.

I’d enjoyed working with some of the leadership team in the past, and reached out to see if they had any openings. I also wanted to return to my home country as I missed family!

Since starting with BossAlien, how has your own growth and development progressed?

I’ve become more confident in my abilities and decisions since joining BossAlien. I truly feel like part of a very tight team, and that I’m able to make a big impact.

How would you describe the people within BossAlien?

Excited, fun, and committed. We’re all so excited to be working in this universe on such an ambitious game.

What would someone be surprised to learn about your company or profession?

I spend a lot of time in project management tools, spreadsheets, and meetings to discuss and plan work with the team.

My role is about facilitating the overall vision of the game, in partnership with our licensor. This is done while ensuring that my team, each with their own specialties, have what they need to stay on track and meet our milestones and quality bars, while still having the freedom to explore and experiment.

How does it feel when you see your work in a real life setting?

Obviously proud!

Tell me how the company supported your growth?

I have always felt encouraged by my co-workers and managers, and trusted to lead big projects.

There’s also a healthy work-life balance, with flexible working hours, that allows me to support my personal life.

Culture is also something that BossAlien puts a great deal of effort into. We are constantly running fun initiatives and events like pumpkin carving for Halloween, or our weekly Friday Show & Tell, which makes the studio a fun and stimulating place to spend time.

There are also some great benefits like private healthcare, stock participation programmes, and a well-stocked kitchen! 😉

What is a common misconception your industry faces and what is the reality?

A lot of people think about “crunch culture” when they think of the games industry, which is characterized by extremely long work hours and stressful working conditions.

I am happy to say I have not experienced that during my time at BossAlien; in fact it is something that our studio works hard to prevent. We expect our employees to be fully engaged while at work, which keeps us focused, productive, and working within normal hours.

This focus on work-life balance, in addition to our uplifting, playful culture, makes the studio a great place to work.

What are you most proud of working on the game?

I love seeing work from team members across different departments come together in the game. We also feel a great sense of accomplishment when we receive the final stamp of approval from the licensor.

What does it mean to you to be a woman in technology and gaming? 

As recent stories have come to light within the industry, I feel lucky that I have been supported throughout my career and have never felt discriminated against due to my gender.

I hope recent female graduates and other women in tech hear about my experience and know that there are gaming studios out there who fully support thei. Please don’t be afraid to join us!

As a woman in leadership, how do you approach supporting other women in games? Does it differ from how you approach your male coworkers? 

I believe I encourage all employees equally. The only thing I’d say is that because we are a minority group, there is a greater sense of kinship and collaboration among us.

The “Women at Zynga UK” employee group provides a great space for unity and support for non-male employees in the UK. Not only does the team organise regular events, but also supports our unique perspectives.

Specialised workshops, mentorship, grandiose annual celebrations of International Women’s Day, reading clubs, and the sharing of useful information and resources are only some of the things that contribute to the collaborative spirit of the group.