Building Inclusion: how our Asia Pacific Network creates purposeful connection

As a billion people around the world are preparing to celebrate the Lunar New Year, we’ve partnered with the global co-chair of our employee resource group, the Intuit Asia Pacific Network, Wai Ling Chai for her insights on the holiday and her career.

A professional headshot of a smiling woman with short brown hair. A woman in a red coat poses in front of celebratory red and yellow decorations.
A professional headshot of a smiling woman with short brown hair. A woman in a red coat poses in front of celebratory red and yellow decorations.

As a billion people around the world are preparing to celebrate the Lunar New Year, we’ve partnered with Wai Ling Chai, the global co-chair of our employee resource group the Intuit Asia Pacific Network, for her insights on the holiday and her career.

What is Lunar New Year? 

Lunar New Year is a huge celebration in many Asian countries like China, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Singapore, and more. It’s like having Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s Eve combined– starting with the reunion dinner on the eve and extending for another 15 days! 

Based on the lunar calendar, the New Year begins on the first new moon that occurs toward the end of January and spans until the full moon arrives. Most of eastern Asia will be ringing in the year of the Rabbit, while in Vietnam, it’ll be the year of the Cat.

Tell us a little bit about yourself and what brought you to Intuit.

In 2015 I was contacted by a recruiter about a newly created role as Intuit’s Global Mobility leader. I’d heard of TurboTax and QuickBooks, but didn’t connect them with Intuit. When I did my research, I found that Intuit claimed to put people and customers first. I was skeptical as I’ve seen similar accolades at previous employers but they didn’t walk the talk. Nonetheless, I was curious and proceeded with the interview and I haven’t looked back since!

What would you say stands out most for you about working here?

  1. I have the chance to learn something new every day.
  2. I get to work with amazing people from different teams all around the world.
  3. Recharge Days! In addition to our paid holidays, Intuit gives us additional paid days off around the holidays in November and December so we can all unplug from work at the same time.

Why are you passionate about leading the Asia Pacific Network (APN)?

I joined because I wanted to make sure that I can help influence and create a safe, inclusive place for our Asia Pacific members, and allies. Our group’s primary focus back in 2019 was on fun and networking. While we still do both, we made a shift following the murder of George Floyd and increased attacks on African Americans and Asians. We agreed that an attack on one of us was an attack on all of us.

That led the APN to co-host multiple events with other employee resource groups including the Abilities, Women’s, Military, Pride, and Silver networks. By leveraging the mindset that we are stronger together across our entire ERG program, we’ve developed greater empathy and had a larger impact. We decided to anchor on our group’s similarities and celebrate our differences. 

What advice would you give to someone looking to pursue a career in tech?

Have a high “say/do” ratio, meaning if you say you’re going to do something, do it. This is how you build your personal brand. 

Similarly, you can’t be afraid to fail or ask for help. My dad said to me, “Be true to yourself and live without regrets.” I try to live by that every day. For me, that means knowing what you want and investing in yourself. 

I truly encourage everyone to have conversations with their managers about their careers. Organize coffee chats with people in roles you’re interested in. You have to speak up and own your career because nobody can read your mind. And, if you do, you’ll discover that there are people out there who truly want to help you be successful.

At Intuit, we’re passionate about making sure that everyone can show up as their authentic self at work. Through ERGs like the Asia Pacific Network, we are able to foster a sense of connection, empathy, and trust between employees. If you are interested in joining our team check out our careers page.

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