Episode 16 | How $11k Wrapped in Bacon Helped Build a Mobile Gaming Hit-Factory

David Hassell interview David Hassell interview

 

AWE Episode Jason Weiss pt 1

Many companies use perks like free onsite food, massages, and elaborate off-sites to attract and retain game-changing talent.

If you’re Scopely, you take a different tack.

Namely? Bricks of cash. Wrapped in bacon.

Scopely is the LA-based mobile gaming studio that has produced six #1 games in a row, including The Walking Dead Road to Survival, Yahtzee with Friends, and Disco Bees.

According to today’s Awesome Office guest Jason Weiss, that success started with creating a culture that could attract and retain the top talent.

And he should know: as the company’s SVP of talent for more than four years, he was a main driver behind the company’s vibrant and playful ethos.

The results speak for themselves. During his tenure at the company, Weiss helped expand the organization from 10 to more than 125 employees, and helped grow revenue from zero to a run rate of more than $70 million a year.

While Jason was there, Scopely also launched one of the most notorious recruiting campaigns in recent memory – a search to find “the most interesting engineers in the world” that enticed top talent with oil portraits, a year’s supply of beer, a tuxedo, a spear gun, and yes, $11,000 in cold hard cash wrapped in cured meat.

We talked about all this and more in this week’s epic two-part interview.

 

Key Takeaways

  • Jason shares what he feels is the biggest flaw in the employer-employee relationship, and why the “tour of duty” concept (from Reid Hoffman’s The Alliance) might be a little far-fetched.  
  • Jason tells us the story of Scopely’s infamous “most interesting engineer in the world” campaign.
  • Jason opines why he believes the war for talent lies in creating an attractive company culture, as well as why those first few hires are so critical.
  • Jason explains why the best managers come from within, but why not all great performers make good managers.
  • Finally, Jason tells us what he means when he says that hiring is like dating, while actually working somewhere is more like a marriage.

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