Technically speaking, I am a clinical psychologist trained also as a neuroscientist in imaging technologies. In 2014, I left academic medicine to start Savonix, a digital health company that provides low cost, digital cognitive screening tests. As a CEO and Founder at a health company, my day-to-day work life is made up of overseeing all business operations from finance to product, business development, customer service, data science and personnel management including hiring and setting the cultural tone of the company.
Location: San Francisco, California
Current Gig: Founder and CEO at Savonix
One word/phrase that describes your work style: Integrated
Current computer/mobile device: MacBook Pro, iPhone 6, iPad Air2
What apps/tools/software can you not live without?
Excel, Salesforce, Slack, and then Sprig for ready made meal delivery to the office and home, plus Apple CarPlay in the car to dictate memos, texts, messages and to-do lists hands free while on the road. WhatsApp is our go to for free international texts and calls and Hotel Tonight for last minute deals on 4 and 5 star hotels with frequent travel.
What’s your best time-saving shortcut or life hack?
Sprig for ready made meals delivered in 15 minutes closely followed by Global Clear to skip the security lines at TSA with frequent travel.
What’s your workspace set up like?
Our team all have adjustable standing desks and we are in a co-working space now so we have an open, highly-collaborative environment. When I need to concentrate and have quiet I rely on my noise cancelling headphones or work from home for the day.
How do you keep track of things you need to do (any to-do-list apps)?
iCal is a life saver, shared with my team so they can book, but not double book me. Notes in phone with Apple CarPlay to dictate to-do lists and memos to myself.
Besides your phone or computer, what gadget can’t you live without, and why?
Bose noise cancelling headphones
What everyday thing can you do better than most people?
Read people. As long as I can remember I have had a radar for everything from narcissism to entitlement and when someone is not telling me the truth.
What’s your secret?
A high level of mirror neurons augmented by my clinical training.
What do you listen to while you work?
Always classical music at work preferably Mozart or Bach. When not working everything from Johnny Cash to The Black Keys.
What are you currently reading?
The Devil’s Chessboard by Allen Talbot
How do you recharge?
Reading, hiking with my husband, swimming, taking my dog to the beach.
How do you balance your work life and your home/family life?
It’s a common joke that start up Founders and CEOs are the only people that work 80 hours a week so they never have to work 40 again. I don’t have balance as much as integration. With a global company and customers in the US and Asia I am often on calls at 5 AM or 10 PM and I work most weekends. This means I have to take personal time when I can get it. So for instance this Friday I have a 6 AM swim session then calls and meetings from 7:30 to 12:30 then a 1:00 acupuncture appointment (house call) then calls again from 2:30 to 7:30 PM, then a dinner date with my husband that evening. Another typical scenario is being on a conference call while making a meal at home in the evening. I find the key is to have very strict “no device” time which for me is a minimum of 1 hour before when I intend to sleep, all dinners out with family and friends and my 3-4 times a week morning hikes with my husband and dog. I leave the phone at home for those things to give myself real time away from work. Granted, that time is in small chunks integrated with high work demands but I find the device free time to be real down time that helps me truly recharge.
What’s your sleep routine like?
I am borderline religious about sleep. Travel interrupts it often with time zone and routine changes – but when I am at home, TV and electronics are off by 9 PM and then I read and stretch then turn the lights out around 10 PM and naturally wake-up around 5:30 AM.
What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
From my board chair and CEO mentor Penny Herscher. She told me that as CEO, four things belong on my desk – Capital, Customers, Culture and Strategy – everything else should be delegated.