There is No Them

Lessons on leadership from the world of game development


What do leadership and game design have in common? It turns out they have a lot in common, as I have discovered while leading larger and larger teams through the building of many computer games. This blog is about the hard lessons I have learned about leadership, with the occasional connection to game design.

I am Joshua Howard. I have almost 20 years in the games/software industry, much of it leading teams and organizations. Recently I was an Executive Producer of a very large development effort at Realtime Worlds, and before that I lead the online side of Bella Sara at Hidden City Games. Previously I started, and eventually led, Carbonated Games, a casual games studio at Microsoft. Now I’m back at Microsoft, working to help bring our Flight experience to a broader audience.

Over the years I have come to realize that my passion and my gift is in bringing people together and leading them to do great things. I build, grow, and lead strong teams, and have learned a lot about leadership in the process. I lead those strong teams to deliver great products; at the end of the day its the quality of the products that lead to business success. I believe deeply in the following relationships: Invest in your team -> team delivers great products -> great products lead to business success. You can try to focus merely on great products, but I have found that starting with your people is the most sure fire way to success.

You can reach me at View my LinkedIn profile at

The name There Is No Them will be explained in one of the posts. The quick version is this – by deciding to build ‘us’ at the expense of ‘them’, leaders ultimately limit the potential of their organization. To achieve out-of-this-world greatness leaders need to understand this lesson, and manifest it in everything they do.


Written by joshuahoward

August 30, 2008 at 6:17 pm

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