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In pursuit of the world’s DNA

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in Best-Practices Leadership,Leaders & Managers

One of the signal traits of a leader is vision, but vision can be hard to capture or explain.

Anne Wojcicki, founder of the mass market genetic testing firm 23andMe, has vision.

Armed with a degree in biology, she first went to work for a biotech hedge fund. In 2000, she left Wall Street intending to apply for medical school, but couldn’t find a single doctor who would encourage her to go.

Then she met a scientist who described plans for a genetics project in Micronesia. “He said they had so much data it was overwhelming, says Wojcicki, “but also not enough data to make sense of things. We talked about what would happen if you could get the world’s DNA and how it would change the world.”

Wojcicki’s plan is to get the world’s DNA and change the world—or at least health care.

“Healthy at 100,” is how she puts it.

— Adapted from “The DNA Revolution,” Elizabeth Murphy, Fast Company.

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