Faces of Unity — Ingrid Lestiyo
In celebration of Asian & Pacific Islander Heritage Month, we’re featuring Ingrid Lestiyo for this month’s Faces of Unity blog. Ingrid is the General Manager for Monetization and her team’s mission is to enable developers success. Learn more about Ingrid and what motivates her as a leader here at Unity!
Where were you before joining Unity?
I was at Rubicon Project, an advertising automation company in various roles that includes product, operations, and corporate strategy. I co-founded a mobile advertising startup called Mobsmith, which was acquired by Rubicon Project to help kick-start their mobile advertising business. It was a fantastic learning experience going from a small start-up to a larger start-up, going through an IPO and learning how to operate as a public company. Before Mobsmith, I held several product roles at Yahoo! Inc., including Director, Product Management for the Yahoo! Homepage and International Product Manager for Flickr.
What does your day-to-day look like?
There is never a typical day (which I love). I spend time with the team 1:1 or in a group. We tackle specific projects, brainstorm strategy or problem solve an issue. I also have various calls or meetings with partners and customers to learn first hand how we can make them more successful. A significant portion of my time is also spent meeting potential candidates for our team. At times, something unexpected happens and I have to go into crisis management mode. I try to do my best to juggle all of this with family — getting kids ready for school, getting back in time for dinner and bedtime.
What cool projects are you working on?
Our mission is to enable developer success. Our team is working on services and tools that help developers run a profitable business which continues to fund the creation of richer player experiences and new games.
Have you met any professional milestones at Unity? If so, what?
This is the largest cross-functional and most global team that I’ve had the privilege of leading. Our team includes product, data science, engineering, sales, and operations spread across 9 countries. Integrating various working cultures and figuring out rules of engagement between the teams so we can work effectively together is the most challenging but also the most rewarding part of the job.
What do you enjoy about working at Unity overall?
Number one is the people. I feel very lucky to work with the best at what they do. It forces me to bring my A+ game every day and keep me continuously learning and challenged. I also love the diversity and uniqueness of our team. It enables us to look at problems from different perspectives. Between the monetization leadership team of 9, we’ve lived in 20+ countries, come from all different professional backgrounds from pro-golfer, airlines pricing expert to finance, 5:4 female to male ratio and strong representation from the LGBTQ community.
What would you tell someone considering a career in your field?
There is never a dull moment. The industry is very dynamic. If you are analytical, love numbers and thrive in a fast-paced, sometimes ambiguous environment — monetization is an exhilarating career.
What’s the best piece of career advice you’ve ever gotten?
“You miss 100% of the shots that you don’t take”. Many times the first step is the hardest, there are what-ifs and fear of failure. Taking a new role at work, making that cold call to a potential customer or investor, changing industries, starting a new business. In our industry not taking risks today means getting disrupted tomorrow. I learned not to be afraid to take risks and seize the opportunities now. However, not to do it blindly. Doing as much due diligence as possible and using learnings from mistakes to hone my instincts.
What’s your favorite non-Unity related activity?
I have three young kids — 7 and 5-year-old girls and a 3-year-old boy. Most of my non-Unity time is spent with them. We love traveling to new places as a family. My husband and I also love trying out new restaurants in San Francisco whenever we can.
What excites you most about the future of Unity?
I believe that every piece of digital content you will experience in the future will involve Unity. The future of content will be realtime and 3D and we are at the forefront of that evolution.
I also feel like we are building a company with a heart – which is unique. Yes, we are here to seize business opportunities but we are also very deliberate in how we do it. Everything from how we brought developers together to develop best practices to address the European data privacy laws to supporting our developers from countries impacted by the travel ban to attend our Unite events in Europe so they don’t miss out just because of where they come from.
If you’re interested in learning more about Unity Technologies and opportunities to work with Ingrid and her team check out our careers page! We’re hiring!