19 Apr Get to Know Teresa Phillips
Canon Club Advisory Board Member Teresa Phillips
Spherex | Co-Founder & CEO
IN THIS JOB Five years
PRIOR EXPERIENCE Held executive positions at Yahoo! and Time Warner; founder of venture-backed start-up; U.S. Army veteran.
HOMETOWN Allen, Kan.
LIVES NOW Los Altos, Calif.
ENJOYS, OUTSIDE OF WORK My teenage sons, travel, sports and gardening.
CURRENT BINGE Yellowstone
DEG: Do you have a personal philosophy when it comes to your work? If so, how does it translate into what you do?
TP: Know who you are –your values, goals and what makes you tick. Set boundaries accordingly and live each day in alignment with your true self. Apply your talents and gifts in service of others.
I work hard, strive for excellence, care about others around me, and lead from a place of authenticity. When the day is done and I’ve done my best, I have no worries about the outcome.
DEG: What excites you about the future of industry?
TP: Our future is global. Two of the highest human desires are to share stories and feel a sense of belonging. We are all connected in this way. Movies and TV shows have a unique and powerful capacity to open our hearts and minds to different ethnic, cultural, religious, and gender differences. Technological advances have expanded the proverbial campfire to all of human society. I am very excited about our potential in media and entertainment to empower people from all corners of the Earth to share their stories; to accurately portray under-represented populations; and to export culture in a way that is respectful and authentic–all of which will bring about a more tolerant and harmonious world.
DEG: What are the top reasons that shows that are in demand with audiences in the US may not be as popular in other countries?
TD: Audience demand of shows in local markets is influenced by language, culture, economic, technical, and political forces. One size does not fit all. The horror genre is a good example in cultural diversity. In American horror shows, we expect blood and gore; whereas, in Australia –horror is spooky and mysterious; India prefers religious or supernatural contexts; Indonesia is very folklore-focused, tapping into childhood fears and problems with society; and in South Korea–gratuitous death is avoided. All of these cultural factors play out in an audience’s demand for content.
DEG: What are content owners most surprised about when you share these insights?
TP: Culture is still a black box for most American media companies. Content regulation and censorship are new to them, complicated and always changing. Content owners are surprised at everything from legal compliance and political influence to brand safety and cultural relevance.
DEG: If you could have dinner with anyone, living or not, who would it be and why?
TP: I would have dinner with Oprah Winfrey. She’s intelligent, aware, accomplished and instrumental. I’m certain she has multiple frameworks for life that I’d love to tap into.
Learn more about DEG’s Canon Club here.