Jeremi Gorman, Chief Business Officer, Snap Inc.
If you had to choose one specific creative piece (can be a song, photo, artwork, movie, play that best reflects your professional journey, what would that be and why?
Life is a Highway by Tom Cochrane.
What was the turning point, or most important moment, in your career? How has this moment led you to the leader you are today?
The turning point in my career was actually what I thought at the time was the most disappointing point of my career. There was a position available at one of my prior companies, and based on my performance, I believed I was one of two possible incumbents for the role, but ultimately the role went to a third person. I was devastated, didn’t understand the decision, and to be honest, my feelings were hurt. I began to doubt my own abilities. It was at this moment that I realized that I had two choices, I could mope and complain, or I could pick myself up off the ground (literally, I will admit) and take matters into my own hands. It was at this time that someone gave me some really great advice. She told me “if you want to grow, go to a growing company where there will be many opportunities. At a shrinking company where there are only a few promotion opportunities a couple of times per year, you or someone close to you is bound to be disappointed. At a growing company, great people get great opportunities.” Shortly thereafter, I left my large, but shrinking company, to move to a company with a smaller, but growing opportunity in advertising and guess what? With the growing company, there were plenty of opportunities for great people, and I was able to grow with the business.
Tell us about a female figure who’s had a major impact in your life/professional journey – this can be a mentor, someone who’s inspired you, someone you look up to, etc.
The woman I mention above, who told me to follow growth was a pivotal person in my career, of course. In addition, I have found both male and female mentors from whom I have grown. I think that some women only look for female mentors, which is important, but gender shouldn’t be the only criteria. Look for people who think like you, who have accomplished what you hope to accomplish and who you admire, no matter their gender (and also, some may be younger than you!). My most recent boss is a very good example of a man who brought me extraordinary value. I once asked him advice on how to come across as strong on my POV in meetings without sounding like a b*^tch, something all strong women worry about. He replied “you aren’t a b*^th, you are a badass, and I never want to hear you say that word again”. It’s the best advice I’ve ever received and because of it, he will always be someone I admire and a friend.
What is the bravest thing you’ve done in your career so far?
Four months ago, I made the move from Amazon to Snap and made the decision really quickly! I respect and admire both companies greatly, so really just had to make a gut call, and I took a leap of faith. It was like skydiving in that I was jumping out of a perfectly good airplane. I am really excited about my role as the Chief Business Officer at Snap because I am learning new things every day. All of my previous roles were Sales specific, but in this one, I get to learn more about the operations of the business, the financial side, and was even on my first ever earnings call! Never underestimate the power of learning new things, even later in your career. It’s invigorating.