MICHELLE ZATLYN Sam Barnes Sportsfile Getty Images

Sam Barnes/Sportsfile/Getty Images

Michelle Zatlyn

Chief Operating Officer and Cofounder, Cloudflare

The internet security company Cloudflare doubled its market cap in the first half of this year as companies required greater security and better internet performance for their remote workers.

Michelle Zatlyn, the company’s cofounder and COO, has played a key role. She’s focused on empowering customers as they navigate this moment of change, whether it's helping a big company shift to a digital strategy or guiding a yoga teacher starting online classes and merchandise sales.

“They really need us right now,” says Zatlyn, who previously worked at Google and Toshiba.

While some enterprise-security analysts think that 2020 is the beginning of a new era for cybersecurity as the rise of the hybrid workplace reinvents how people interact online, Zatlyn prefers not to make broad predictions about how the business world will emerge from the coronavirus crisis.

“It’s human nature to try to regain control by making predictions about the world post-COVID, but most of the time they end up being wrong,” she says. “This isn’t an experiment. As a leader, our 1,300 employees and their kids and dependents are depending on me. I need to stay focused on that.”