Kahn's personality is typical of an editor: she is independent and blunt. These qualities are needed in an administrative position and she seemed to use them only to get her work done well. Kahn also appears to be somewhat compassionate, offering Chloe Sullivan a chance to work at the Daily Planet after requiring her to prove herself.
Chloe Sullivan applied for a job as an intern and met with Ms. Kahn, who tested Chloe's determination by initially denying her the internship. She told Chloe that she was lucky to get a previous job at the Daily Planet at such a young age, when other people struggle for years to get the same opportunity. Chloe pleaded with Kahn to reconsider and even told her that she was willing to start at the very bottom, but Kahn still refused. Before leaving, Chloe told her that, despite having a powerful position now, even she had to start somewhere. Impressed by Chloe's resolve, Kahn decided to see if Chloe was indeed worthy of working at the Planet by asking her to submit a story.
Chloe later gave Kahn a story about a sorority of vampires at Metropolis University. Despite initially dismissing the story as tabloid fluff only worthy of the Inquisitor, Kahn saw flashes of brilliance in Chloe's work, saying that she wasn't "completely untalented" and that she needed more time to hone her reporting skills. Eventually, she decided to give Chloe the job and Chloe started her work at the Daily Planet just like she said she was willing to do: at the bottom.
- The name Pauline Kahn is most likely derived from Paul Levitz and Jeannette Kahn, two high-ranking executives of DC Comics.
- Her previous partnership with Perry White acts as a precursor to that between Lois and Clark.