Here at GALE, we have a melting pot of really interesting people. To get to know them better, we’ve started a Team Spotlight series where we ask not just about their work, but about their personal stories as well. For this spotlight, we sat down with Jessica Chow, our Senior Manager of Business Strategy.
Toronto (but I was born in NYC and had a brief stint living in Hong Kong)
List 3 words to describe your role at GALE:
Dynamic, integrated, data-driven
What are you passionate about?
The MLSE foundation! It works to provide kids with opportunities to participate in sports and uses sports as a tool to teach life skills. They also support kids locally, building accessible facilities in the downtown core. Their focus on research and measurable results ensures the work they’re doing has real impact. I can’t say enough good things about this organization – they do great work!
What is the best piece of advice you ever received?
“If you’re not making 3 mistakes a day you’re not working hard enough.” An old boss told me this and it really stuck with me. We always beat ourselves up for failures but if we don’t try, or never go for it we won’t learn anything. When you learn from your mistakes, you learn more about yourself and how you can succeed.
What is one podcast you would recommend?
I’m not a huge podcast person BUT I just got a book for my birthday called “The Three Body Problem”. It’s a science fiction novel, part of a trilogy, and was praised by Obama! I’m pumped to read it.
What project/assignment are you most proud of since joining GALE?
I’d have to say the work I did with GDI (Garage and Dynamite). When I started at GALE, digital and tech were not my areas of expertise – GDI was a deep dive into that. Working on this project helped me understand just how complex the tech world is, but also gave me the tools to talk about tech and digital. I’m really proud of the work we did there and my role in it.
What is your personal mantra?
I don’t have one. But if you have any to spare feel free to toss them my way!
How have you grown since joining GALE?
For me, I came into my role at GALE as a strategist wanting to understand a lot more on the implementation side in terms of tech and dev. Something I love about GALE is “No Silos”– one of our core values about breaking down barriers between domains. It’s given me a lot of opportunities to explore strategy across many verticals, building a T-shaped skill set (deep knowledge in strategy but also top-level knowledge across a lot of domains). Working with creative, data science, development and communications has all made me better in my area of expertise. GALE’s integrated strategy is cross-functional, which is really unique!
If you had a side hustle what would it be?
I would love to run a restaurant. I know that’s not exactly a side hustle (that is a full-time gig for sure), but I’ve always been a big foodie.
If you could pick one person living or dead to be your mentor who would it be and why?
I would definitely pick Neil DeGrasse Tyson. Before I went to business school, I studied medical bioscience, so my interest in science still lingers. I love how he asks BIG questions but makes his answers accessible to everyone. He’s personable and good at explaining complex ideas, things I strive for in my professional life. He’s a master storyteller, weaving together difficult scientific theory to produce understandable, and wildly popular, content. He’s also so funny!