TheBridge profile: Jenny Kaplan
Name: Jenny Kaplan
Current city: Greensboro, NC/New York, NY
Current job: Co-founder & CEO at Wonder Media Network (Check out their newest show here)
Past job: Reporter at Bloomberg News
Q. Favorite spot for a coffee meeting? La Colombe
Q. Describe how a skill you learned in a previous job helped you in your current job. As a reporter at Bloomberg, I learned to remove ego from the production process. Everyone benefits from an editor and holding work as too precious can prevent it from being as good as it can be. It's hard to step away from something you've made. It often feels complete and perfect. But it's essential to do so, to let others give feedback, and to embrace change in order for a product/creation/show/story to reach its full potential
Q. Job advice in three words? Find your mission
Q. How are you (or your company, org, nonprofit) currently bridging the gap between politics and tech / innovation and regulation? At Wonder Media Network we use audio, specifically podcasts, as a storytelling tool to create empathy between people with different perspectives and to expand political engagement. Politics is often seen as a field that only supports involvement from a small group, yet the decisions of politicians affect each of us daily. We strive to change that perception: Politics is for everyone.
Q. What can innovators teach regulators/policy makers? Find solutions to a problem that needs solving and then find the easiest and most efficient solution. If something goes wrong, pivot quickly. Sometimes regulations/policies lack grounding in what people actually need. The large, often bureaucratic natures of regulators/policy makers often mean solutions take a long time and may not be efficient. Innovators are (hopefully) skilled at changing course quickly when necessary. That's vital to make sure that the product being created is serving its audience in the best way possible.
Q. What can regulators/policy makers teach innovators? Take the time to really think about the implications of what you're doing. The same slowness that can make regulators/policy makers less efficient can also help to ensure that outcomes are sufficiently well thought through.
Q. What's one piece of advice you are still trying to master? Find balance.
Q. If you had to live in another city, which would it be? LA (I just moved back to the East Coast from there a few months ago) or London (I just love it there).
Q. Best advice you’ve received? Come at every deal/negotiation/discussion with the mindset of finding the most fair outcome for everyone involved.
Q. Morning routine? I'm big on morning routine. I used to be really dedicated to doing morning pages every day, but as WMN has taken off, I've felt less comfortable taking half an hour to write. Instead I've found a new routine that takes just 10 minutes. I read a daily meditation, write in The Five Minute Journal, do some stretching, and make myself a cup of tea/coffee.
Q. How often do you work from home? Almost daily.
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