She's the Boss
Helen Wu ’10 started the Asian Boss Girl podcast in 2017 as a way to keep in touch with her friends Janet Wang and Melody Cheng, often over a bottle of wine. But the honest conversations among the cohosts struck a chord with listeners who were struggling with the same anxieties. Today, six seasons later, an average of 50,000 people tune into each hour-long ABG episode. In March, Wu quit her job as a finance manager at Ernst & Young to focus on the show full time. We asked her how to parlay a passion project into a career.
ABG normalizes discussions around sex, imposter syndrome, health, and ambition. “In Asian culture there’s such a stigma to talking about these topics,” Wu said. “You’re expected to go through life and pretend that everything is fine. But the more we talk, the more I realize we’re all going through the same thing.”
When Wu first sat in front of her microphone, she was terrified. But she put her anxieties aside to have honest conversations and address Asian American stereotypes head-on. “I had to push myself to be more vulnerable, but it was worth it,” she said.
“For a long period of my life, I just did what I needed to do and missed out on things that bring me pure joy,” Wu said. “Focus on these things consistently and who knows: they could become a full-blown business.”
The podcast’s success speaks to the lack of authentic Asian perspectives in the media—and in books, television shows, and movies. “People are relying on us to become a voice for this group that has not really had a voice before,” Wu said.