Jenny Johnson - Co-President, Franklin Templeton InvestmentsFeb 18, 2020
Craig: Welcome to our Five on 5, we're excited to have Jenny Johnson, the co-chair of Franklin Templeton Investments, join us in town for the Women's Leadership Conference. Thanks for being here. I'm glad to see you. Jenny: Nice to be here. Craig: Tell us, I want to ask you first. You're co-chairman of Franklin Templeton Investments, congratulations.
jenny: thanks Craig: how the hell are you able to balance those duties and share that title, if you want? Jenny: (Laughs) Well, it's a pretty new role since October and what's happened is we both had pretty big areas of the company and we kept them independently and now we're really sharing the investment and the type of our alternate role and solutions. .
We're a global asset management firm and we make sure we meet every week and it's all about communications. We tend to have a very similar approach in styles, so I think it works pretty well and you know we are, so far we're very good, we'll see. Craig: (Laughs) 6 months later, it's a process. Jenny: We'll see as it evolves, yeah. Craig: well, very interesting. Alright, obviously you talked about Franklin Templeton Investments, known for its mutual funds. Tell us a little more. Obviously, there's a lot more going on within the company. Jenny: So Franklin Templeton is a global asset management company.
We have more than 750 billion in assets under management. We have offices in 35 countries and really the Templeton brand was really the pioneer in international and global investment. And because we have clients in 180 countries, we are truly a global investment firm. Craig: Okay, so you're in town for the Women's Leadership Conference and we're recording this right now here in town, but the reality was a few days ago. So tell us what you talked about, what you said to the women at the conference. Jenny: So you know the conference was really designed for one, women networking with each other and two, sharing with each other, how you're balancing the work/life balance one, how as a woman you're approaching your leadership. and succeed in whatever you do.
The conference involves people from education, business and non-profit organizations, so it really crosses the spectrum, but many of the issues that women face in whatever career are the same, so just share experiences with each other. Craig: Okay, very good. Alright, let's take a short break. We'll have a lot more in a bit, stay with us. Craig: Welcome back to Five on 5, we're here again with Jenny Johnson, the co-chair of Franklin Templeton Investments. So you work in an industry that I'm told is largely male dominated. What is Franklin Templeton's approach to diversity and why do you think it's an important issue for all people, all companies, excuse me, to get involved?
Jenny: So there have been a lot of studies now and really the term is diversity and inclusion, right? I mean, well, we have a diverse group of people, but the question is do these people feel included? And do you encourage them to include themselves? For people to bring their whole selves to work, right? You don't want to lose anything because people are afraid to share who they are. And studies have shown that when you get diverse perspectives to solve problems. In reality, you are much more effective problem solvers. So we think it's important that we're open and that there's a real message to be open to that.
Our clients represent a diverse group of people, so it's important to make sure you have that perspective within the firm in order to serve them. We're fortunate because, as I mentioned, you know that operating in 35 countries, we actually have to be able to incorporate multiple cultures, but you want to make sure that you're inclusive across all settings of those cultures. Craig: So from what I understand you have 5 children, are they 3 girls and 2 boys? Jenny: 3 girls 2 boys, yes. craig: is that so? Well. So I'm curious how you balance that with your work life, but I really want to focus on the different advice you give your kids, depending on their gender.
Do you say the same things that you say to your guys to your girls and career advice and that kind of thing? Jenny: So my career advice to my sons and none of them, none of my girls follow me in my industry, at least as far as I know. You know, it's really doing what you love because you won't feel like you're working if you do what you love. Know. I think that's really important because if you go after something because you feel like you have to go after that instead of what you love, you spend a lot of time working.
So that would be my first piece of advice. I have some unconventional advice that I often give to women. That never, if you want to have children, people have their own choice about whether or not they want them. Never let your career affect the decision of when to do it. I've heard too many women say oh I wish I'd done it sooner, I've never heard a woman say eh that was too soon. And my experience has been with women who have children and bringing it in doesn't change the trajectory of your career. So that's my kind of advice, if my kids ask me that question, I'll give them that advice.
Craig: Interesting, okay. So you climbed Mount Kilimanjaro in Kenya.
jenny: yes Craig: Huge mountain, what did you learn about yourself doing that? Jenny: So, you know, it's about 19,600 feet at the top. I didn't take any altitude pills, which I didn't need until I got to about 17,000 feet and then I had a terrible headache. Craig: Wow. Jenny: And you know, it's actually very similar to how I feel when facing any hard problem, and you know if you think about the next 10,000 steps it can be overwhelming, but if you think about the next five steps, that's pretty manageable. .
So for me, when I got to this last 2,000 feet, it was really just, you know, keep going. Continue doing the next step. Just focus on that and it was a great feeling. It's not a technical climb, it's more perseverance, okay, I'm going to get through this. Craig: Well that's admirable, thank you very much for giving us some of your time. Jenny: My pleasure. Craig: It's great to meet you. jenny: thanks Craig: stay with us, we'll be right back.
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