This interview with Kim Reed Perell, chief executive of Adconion Direct, a provider of digital advertising, was conducted and condensed by Adam Bryant.
Q. Were you in leadership roles when you were younger?
A. I’m a twin, and I led my sister out into the world. That was my first foray into leadership. She reluctantly followed nine minutes later.
Q. Nice. What about a bit later?
A. Both my parents are entrepreneurs, so I was given the tools of leadership by watching them. My father was a real estate entrepreneur, and my mother worked in organizational behavior and communications. She worked with companies and nonprofits in the Pacific Northwest on their vision and values.
So our dinner-table conversations were not about sports or school. It was more, “Here’s the business problem we’re trying to solve,” and then we’d have a family discussion about it. There’s a lot of hard-work DNA in our family. I was able to watch how hard it is to be an entrepreneur and how great it can feel when you build something successful. Everything had to be earned in my family. If I wanted to ride a horse, I’d have to work at the stable for seven hours before my one-hour horse ride.
Q. Any expressions they would repeat often?