Name: Lisa Wong
Job / Title: Sr. Director, Developer Relations and Community
Company: Wowza Media Systems
Q: From your perspective, what are the most important trends that will take place in your industry in the next 10 years?
Lisa: Live video streaming allows us to share experiences with colleagues, friends, and family anywhere in the world. Today it’s easy to stream live sports, cultural events, and personal activities without purchasing expensive equipment or requiring in-depth technical expertise. And the easier it becomes to produce and share live streams, the more our expectations and demands for it grow. Workplaces can now embrace remote employees as live video makes collaborative work sessions commonplace and enables face-to-face meetings regardless of where someone is located. We’re beginning to see what augmented reality, virtual reality, and 360-degree streaming experiences could be like, and in the coming years we’ll see continued development in customized experiences and new ways to interact with live streaming for business and social networks.
Q: What role has mentorship played in your career?
Lisa: I’ve been fortunate to have several good mentors in my career. Just like with friends, you have different mentors for different areas or needs. I’ve chosen mentors based on the situation I’m trying to navigate or the technology I’m trying to learn. One mentor’s advice has served me particularly well: If you feel comfortable, you’re not learning. You can always learn more about a specific area of responsibility or your job as a whole. Ask how you can take it to the next level, grow your skill set, and not just get more experience doing the same thing. Are you stagnant? Are you excited with your work or do you feel bored?
Q: What are the hallmark traits of a great leader that you have observed in your career?
Lisa: A great leader is someone who inspires and motivates. It’s someone you would work for again in a heartbeat. The best leader I’ve worked for liked to say, “Stay humble.” This creates a culture of innovation, curiosity, and customers first. An inspiring leader gives that extra boost of motivation, an infusion of energy and excitement so that no matter what challenges you face – technology, competition, or something else, you trust their leadership and their ability to steer the team to success.
Q: What are ways that you have balanced career, personal, and other interests?
Lisa: I’m not one for making a New Year’s resolution. It won’t last. Instead I pick something or someone I want to spend more time on and determine if it is a weekly, monthly, or quarterly cadence. For example, I have a lunch date with my husband weekly where we can talk about whatever is top of mind. Several years ago I started reaching out to one friend each month. If they were not available, I’d try someone else. This meant connecting 1:1 with twelve people live (connecting over social media doesn’t count the same) over the course of a year. That may not sound like a lot, but time flies so this is a way to have results throughout the year. I also pick an area to focus on for three months – it is long enough to fit into a busy work and family schedule, and short enough to give it urgency and focus. It could be something fun, such as returning to a hobby or taking a class to grow your skill set.
Q: In what areas can you give advice to other CLUB members as part of the CLUB mentoring program?
Lisa: My areas of expertise are building high-performing teams with remote or geographically distributed staff, and giving advice based on my experience as a woman in technology. Just ask. In one case, what started out as a one-time session became a year-long monthly mentor relationship.
Q: Tell us something about yourself that is a fun fact.Lisa: I’ve kayaked down the Zambezi River although I’m afraid of crocodiles and hippos.