This October at The Fintech Times is all about the incredible women working in the fintech industry. With women still forming only around 30 per cent of the workforce, it’s important to spotlight those who are working to make a change and blazing a path for those to follow.
Here, Priti Rathi Gupta, Lisa Fischer, Megan Graf, Amanda Bennett and Irene Skrynova share how they’re smashing the glass ceiling
Priti Rathi Gupta, co-founder & MD, LXME, India’s first neo-bank for women in the making
“The reason for women not trying hard enough to “break the glass ceiling’, came much later to me in life. We are known to be risk aware and status quo is better than taking the risk of trying.
“Most times our fear of financial insecurity stops us from trying to take the leap. The solution to this was to build safety nets that give me the courage to aim for the next high goal post. Then whether it is starting a company in a male dominated sphere or taking up leadership positions in organisations, industry bodies or peer to peer ones, I had the confidence of making it all work.
“For me it all starts with a good scenario planning, the worst possible case as well as the best possible. The first gives me the courage to try and the latter, the drive to make it happen. That is how LXME was born. The large impact that it is already making in the lives of women when it comes to money, and the revolution that it can bring makes me wake up every morning with a Zeal to work on it.”
Megan Graf is COO of home equity investment provider, HomePace
“Mentorship and sponsorship are most critical in the small acts we can do for others along their career journeys. Throughout my career I’ve written letters of recommendation for former employees applying for grad school, pushed employees on my team toward stretch roles in other companies and teams, and designed roles around my team members’ interests to set them up for growth in their careers. I’ve reached out to my personal networks, such as through the University of California at Berkeley’s chapter of Alpha Chi Omega, a national women’s sorority with more than 230,000 members, to find diverse hires within the financial services industry.”
Lisa Fischer, chief growth and lending officer at Mission Lane, a credit card provider
“In many industries, including finance and technology, women, and especially women of colour, are severely underrepresented. It’s not enough to just have women in the room. We have to come together to support each other, establish relationships with each other, and be each other’s mentors.
“Now that I serve in a leadership role, I try to serve as a mentor to share my experience, be a soundboard and advisor, and most importantly, a friend to women new to the fintech world. While the fintech industry still has strides to make towards equal representation, establishing opportunities for mentorship among women, and for women to share their voices are both key to jumpstarting empowerment in fintech.”
Amanda Bennett, chief financial officer at money management app, Moneyhub
“By working hard, proving that I am the best person for the role and never believing that there is a glass ceiling.
“I have turned down opportunities where I was to be the token woman on a board or committee. I feel strongly that I want to be there because of my skill set and achievements not to balance the numbers or to tick a box. I believe passionately that we should give everyone the opportunity to succeed and it should never be based on gender, colour, race, sexuality or disability.
“I have always strived to be the best possible version of myself at all times in my career, learning from those around me and challenging myself to always do better. I have never expected to be treated differently from my male colleagues, all I have ever wanted is a level playing field, where everyone has the same opportunities and is measured against the same parameters.”
Irene Skrynova, chief customer officer at Unlimint, a payment processing service provider
“I was quite lucky to be supported by many people who believed in me and who helped me along the way. When I joined Unlimint, I joined an unbelievable team, that has not only helped me grow as a professional but also as a person, and has never made me feel out of place, has never allowed me to doubt myself and my abilities. We celebrate our wins together and motivate each other on a daily basis, and I think that this is essential for any company that wants to break the glass ceiling and truly champion diversity and equality.”