On profitability, diversity, and the future of work.
The Big Task: After three years at TaskRabbit, which provides a marketplace for short-term freelance labor, Brown-Philpot rose to its top job earlier this year. Her priority is to “build a strong culture around growth and improvement,” she says. It’s followed by a goal to push the eight-year-old company along its path to profitability.
Quality Control: Brown-Philpot says TaskRabbit’s daily challenge is making sure that each customer has a great experience. Resulting stories of gratitude—such as one in which a divorced woman used the service to reclaim time for her kids—help the company stay focused on its mission. “It just touches my heart,” Brown-Philpot says.
Boardroom Talk: Brown-Philpot has achieved something few African-American women have—a seat on the board of a major public tech company. She joined the board of HP Inc. last year. “It’s a step for me to grow as a leader,” she says.
Changing the Ratio: Over her 16 years in Silicon Valley (nine at Google), Brown-Philpot says she’s seen the conversation about diversity become more grounded in reality. “Going from one male-dominated industry to another,” she says, referencing her early career in financial services, “I was prepared with how to deal with being one of the minority.” Still, the tech industry has work to do. “We need to be more accountable.”
The Future of Work: Will we all become freelancers someday? Maybe, Brown-Philpot posits. “The future of work is really about people deciding to live and work in the way that they want.”
A version of this article appears in the December 15, 2016 issue of Fortune.