Building a Legacy

You can’t do it alone

When you go to art school, there is often a certain rush that goes along with completing a project. You know that critique is coming, and you want to present something that will wow the audience.

Something that’s innovative, beautiful, and complete.

What Does Complete Mean?

Complete, at art school, often means a fully-finished product. If you’re making an app, for example, there is a process.

You do the research. You come up with the idea. You design it.

And every step of that process belongs to you and your team.

But, Outside of School…

That’s not always the case. When you’re working for a business, or a client, sometimes you’re just making the start of a project, so that you can hand it off to the next team.

That’s something which I have had a vague understanding of for some time. But after this first week in the IBM Maelstrom intern program, I’ve been able to experience it in a whole new way. Products that influence people on a large scale aren’t built in a day. And they aren’t built by one team. It takes a series of teams to build products that are far-reaching — to build a legacy.

So How Do I Deal?

Unfortunately, it’s hard to hand off your work to others, though.

It’s your baby! What if they screw it up?

That fear is something which we all deal with, when we are taught that from a viewpoint of ownership. But if we keep our eyes on the end goal, then we can learn to let it go.

You just have to remember:

the best products aren’t built by one team, and they aren’t built in one day.

They are built over time.
With respect for the process.
And trust in teams that come after you.