Governing Body Spotlight

Governing Body Member of the San Francisco CDAO Community

Francesca La O

Chief Data Officer

Early Warning

Francesca La O has over 20 years of experience in data, analytics, e-commerce and strategy, with a track record of delivering impactful business outcomes within the technology space. As the Chief Data Officer at Early Warning, the owner and operator of the Zelle Network, Francesca leads enterprise-wide data and analytics strategy and execution. 

Francesca attended the University of California at Berkeley on a tennis scholarship, where she was awarded All-American honors. She received her MBA from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania. 

(Fun fact about Francesca: she’s still playing competitive "senior" tennis)!

Learn more about the San Francisco CDAO community here.

Give us a brief overview of the path that led to your current role.

Before Early Warning, I established and scaled several analytics and experimentation teams at DocuSign from early stages through hypergrowth. 

Prior to finding my home in analytics, I held a variety of roles from product management to growth marketing across companies for varying sizes from start-ups to Microsoft, where I consistently used data and analytics to drive strategy and executional excellence!

What is one of your guiding leadership principles?

I believe in extreme ownership and accountability. I am ultimately responsible for my team's outcomes. It is my role to clear the hurdles and provide cover so that they can do big things.

What is the greatest challenge your particular C-level role is facing today, and how are you addressing it?

As a network whose data products are built on top of contributed data, the key area I am focusing on is creating excellence in data quality and governance. The quality of our data has a direct impact on the quality of our products and the customer experience.

What is the key to success for someone just starting out in your C-level role?

The key to success is getting enterprise alignment on the expectations and outcomes for the CDO role.

How do you measure success as a leader?

I measure success via the outcomes my team is able to generate, and the satisfaction of our customers and employees.

What is the value of being a member of the Evanta community?

As a member of the Evanta community, I have the ability to discuss ideas, challenges and trends with very knowledgeable peers in the industry. The well-organized and moderated events are a value-add as well.

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