FIRST THOUGHT: The Decline of TV
There’s a classic scene in Friends in which Chandler and Ross are lifting a hefty couch up narrow apartment stairs. As they attempt to turn, Ross screeches, “Pivot! Pivot! Pivot!” We’ve all been there, right? Moving sucks. If you have the kind of friends who will help you as long as pizza and beer is involved, then lucky you. There is one household item that’s a real breeze to move in 2018: the television. If you have one, it’s flat and lighter than your pet, Snowball. Generation Z has no memory of those square, black boxes that would easily take off a toe if dropped. What’s a modern item you’re relieved to have?
WOMEN IN NUMBERS: 6 out of 10
You know what’s easier to move than a flat-screen? A laptop. That’s what most millennials and younger use to binge-watch their fave shows. In fact, I even stream videos on my laptop and use mirror display to show on my TV screen. There’s no doubt that television’s moving aside while the internet waltzes in: Six out of 10 people would rather use online video platforms than live TV.
WOMAN TO WATCH: Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube
We use tech-y things every single day, but one, don’t know how the heck they work, and two, don’t know who is behind them. That’s why I’m thrilled to tell the story of today’s Woman to Watch, Susan Wojcicki, who’s leading everyone’s go-to video platform, YouTube. Susan has Harvard on her resume, but majored in something unexpected for the CEO of a billion-dollar tech company: history and literature.
Susan’s desire to be immersed in education might have come from her Russian-Jewish mother, who worked as an educator. Susan’s parents encouraged her to follow her passions, instilling independence in her at a young age. In the late nineties, Susan discovered a fondness for an emerging industry: technology.
While four months pregnant, Susan quit her job at Intel and joined Google as its marketing manager back in the day before the company had sand volleyball, office waterfalls and a rockin’ cafeteria. Susan is actually the reason Google owns YouTube: She suggested they acquire the then-startup, and later handled the purchase of YouTube for a paltry $1.65 billion. What a steal!
About four years ago, Susan was appointed to YouTube’s CEO and has since been included in TIME’s list of 100 most influential people. One of Susan’s passions has been paid leave (yes, please.) When she was on the cusp of taking maternity leave for the fifth time, Susan wrote a stirring article for the Wall Street Journal in which she outlined the significance of giving soon-to-be-mothers paid leave.
Susan’s leadership at Google led the company to offer 18 weeks of paid leave. Let me repeat: 18 freakin’ weeks. Can you believe it? When they did so, Susan claims the upgrade inspired new mothers to stay; more specifically, the rate of new mamas leaving the company dropped by half.
Of course, having started at the green stage of a tech company, Susan practically has a PhD in dealing with bigoted bros. For her, the solution to this pervasive gender imbalance is simple: Hire more women. Believe it or not, when men actually have to work with women or those that are different from them, they grow more tolerant and empathetic. Basically, their jerk levels decrease. I think we’d all embrace that transformation.
QUITE THE QUOTE
Let the working mother herself, Susan Wojcicki, conclude this story:
"Don't overplan your life. Joining Google when I was four months pregnant was a bit of a leap, but sometimes you have to do the right thing for you right now."