What Can Businesses Do to Better-Nurture Talent and Inspire Loyalty? | The Financial Technologist

1 min

Download your free copy of the latest Financial Technologist magazine here.Modern employers ...

Download your free copy of the latest Financial Technologist magazine here.

Modern employers are demanding an ever- increasing commitment from their employees, and in today’s hybrid working environment, we can feel like there is an expectation to be ‘always on.’ It has generally always been the case that, if you want to succeed, get promoted, and show your worth, you need to go the extra mile. However, this only works if your company is willing to support and reward that hard work, ambition, and commitment.

I am very proud to be a marketer within FinTech and payments specifically. But I didn’t want to limit my expertise to marketing alone. It was my ambition to become a subject matter expert to really succeed in the highly competitive, fast paced world of FinTech and financial services. I believe you need to understand your company proposition with as much depth and panache as the customer-facing sales and product teams do. How else can you deliver quality, targeted content that addresses industry trends, pain points, and the best solutions?

That said, I know that I don’t fit the mould of a traditional marketer in my focus on industry knowledge versus process best practice – I am more creative than analytical. I prefer people to datasheets. However, what I do have in common with all employees is that I flourish when challenged, am genuinely appreciated, and I am motivated when rewarded with new opportunities to progress my personal and career growth.

How did my company support me?
Flexible roles that are based on individual talent

I was very lucky when I started at Bottomline four years ago, because I wasn’t given a set remit on day one. Instead, I was given the flexibility to work on projects that I felt would grow the business while also suiting my skill set, career objectives, and areas of interest. This meant that I could effectively create a tailored role that benefited the company and me at the same time. Even to this day, I still have a role that wouldn’t fit a traditional marketing function, so I guess it worked!

In-depth training

I had access to experts within the company who mentored me in developing in-depth knowledge of individual industry initiatives and how our solutions address our customer's needs. Additionally, they provided an active mentorship scheme that linked me to a senior-level colleague with one-on-ones every two weeks. Finally, I have completed various leadership qualifications and also have the opportunity to apply for an MBA via the company’s internal programme.

Advocacy and Allyship

Those same colleagues championed my enthusiasm, knowledge, and ability to all my key stakeholders and senior management. This enabled me to build my personal brand within the company and receive permission to participate as an industry-facing representative in webinars, events, and byline my own articles. I am very proud to have had the opportunity to take to the stage as a speaker at Sibos 2023, the most prestigious payments event in the world, to represent both women and the importance of marketing in financial services.

Support for networking and community initiatives 

Networking and ongoing development are key in FinTech, and we certainly have the resources available via communities such as the Payments Association, Women of FinTech, Women in Alliances, Women in Payments, European Women in Payments, and Risky Women. In fact, there are so many great organisations that it would take up the majority of the word allocation for this article. Some businesses would be opposed to their staff taking on extra projects above and beyond their direct role at the company. However, my manager was very supportive in allowing me to attend events and volunteer for these communities as part of my personal career plan.

Led by example

I am very proud of the fact that half of our Executive Leadership Team is comprised of women. Diversity in our workforce is important for many reasons, including creating the widest pool possible from which to choose the best employees.

Treated me as an individual

One of the things that I have appreciated the most is the reassurance that it is okay to be me. I have a manager who fights my corner and understands how I like to work. I have had moments in previous positions where passion, enthusiasm, and ambition have been perceived as aggressive and pushy. However, my team has taken the time to understand my personality and allowed me the space and platform to show my true values and motivations.

More work to do

The list above is true progress and commitment and, therefore, should be replicated. However, there is still more to do across all companies, and within the industry as a whole. FinTech drives economies and, as such, has the potential to lead the way in levelling the playing field for women and others. Too often, DE&I projects are seen as a ‘nice to have’ and deprioritised for more revenue-generating spend. There still aren’t enough women who are encouraged to go for that next promotion. There is a gender pay gap with no tangible plans to close it. I am still confronted with thought leadership panels that are comprised of a singular demographic, and which should be more diverse in all manners and ways.

Businesses succeed by having employees who treats their company as if it is their own business – as such, they will work hard and with enthusiasm and passion. If companies want to grow and succeed, then they need to be willing to reward loyalty, commit to offering opportunity and training, and embrace the uniqueness in all of us.

Download your free copy of the latest Financial Technologist magazine here.
Site by Venn