Digital Design grad Deepak Nailwal might have the best title since Walt Disney’s Imagineers: Ideator. That’s his job with Star TV in India, a network that includes channels like Star World, Star Movies, and National Geographic, among many others. His work as designer and ideator means collaborating closely with the ad sales department in creating strategies and designs for clients to run on the wide swath of channels under the Star banner.
We last blogged about Deepak when we talked about Meet the Deadline: VFS Students and Lifestyle Choices, a simple, whimsical, and addictive little Flash game he created with two classmates. This time, we wanted to find out more about what’s keeping him busy ‘in the field’ – Star’s Fox History & Entertainment.
How did you land the job with Star TV?
I must give credit to the Digital Design faculty for preparing us well.
I was quite worried by the economic conditions so I started job hunting almost two months before I even graduated from college. Therefore by the time I reached New Delhi I had three to four interviews lined up.
After giving a few interviews, I got my first break when I was called by Star TV for a group discussion. From then on, things worked well for me, and after giving two more interviews to the Creative Head and Chief Brand Strategist, I got the job. That all happened in under eight days.
Can you tell us a bit more about a project or two you’re working on’¦ any particular challenges or discoveries?
I am currently working on a recently launched channel, Fox History & Entertainment. The project is challenging because the core objective is to present historical facts in the garb of entertainment that would alter stereotypical notions about history.
Working in huge teams is also challenging, especially when there is a lot of money and brand value involved. The environment is even more challenging because of the current economic slowdown. The working hours have really increased and the quality of work has to be top-notch.
Fortunately my time in VFS was quite similar and helped me learn to manage my time and pressure.
“Ideator” must be one of the coolest new job titles around. Can you talk about how the Digital Design program helped you learn or improve skills that connect directly to the creative problem-solving in your work?
The coolest thing about my job is the title! I love it.
The Digital Design program from day one stressed the importance of collaboration, brainstorming, process, project management, and design as a medium to solve problems. I improved my negotiation skills, as well as public speaking and presentation skills, which I feel are my biggest assets now.
The main thing for me is there are so many aspects for us. There is motion, print, web… and the possibilities are endless. The teaching staff is excellent. They are always around and extend all sorts of support. The curriculum is always evolving, which helps us stay updated with industry standards. VFS is a terrific place to start or develop a career.
Any advice for the Digital Design student who aspires to a career like your own?
Find out your options. Talk to people! Networking is the way to go. Also, don’t see any experience as insignificant. “Nothing is ever wasted.”
The way to finding a job is not easy, so don’t lose hope. Be headstrong and stick to your work ethics.
How different is your life now from how it was when you created “Meet the Deadline” with some classmates in Digital Design? Less sleeping? Eating better food?
Hmm. So you’ve done enough research on me!
Life is really exciting. I am mostly occupied with work on weekdays. But I play badminton every evening at work to keep myself fit and healthy. One thing I learned in VFS and from that game is the importance of staying fit and creating a balance between work and “me” time.