Growing up as a shy introvert, Reddit COO Jen Wong said she never saw herself as a leader.
“I think I assumed a leader was a person who told other people what to do,” Wong said.
It was her fascination with companies and the people who lead them, as well as a drive to solve new problems, that led her to pursue a career that has included leadership positions at Time, Inc.; PopSugar; AOL, and now Reddit.
“I’m a puzzler at heart, and when my mind starts searching for a new problem to solve, and there’s something I can learn, that propels me forward,” Wong said. “I always want to move into something that has a clear lane for me to have an impact.”
Wong, who topped Reddit’s Queer 50 list this year, shared her leadership journey with MBA students and the Haas community at a Dean’s Speaker Series talk on Sept. 21. The talk was co-sponsored by Q@Haas as part of Coming Out Week, September 18-22.
As Reddit’s Chief Operation Officer, Wong oversees business strategy and related teams. Only four years into her tenure as COO, she has helped lead the growth of Reddit into a profitable business by scaling ad revenue to well over $100 million. Her leadership goes beyond growing the business; she is also passionate about Reddit’s company goal that’s just as important as revenue: diversity and inclusion. In addition, Jen is viewed as an expert in the digital landscape.
Watch the full talk: