A popular statistic which has been floating around in 2021 is that only around 30% of the fintech workforce is made up of women, and yet when looking at leaders within fintech, this number plummets down to a mere 17%. Fintech continues to battle a gender diversity problem, but it’s not due to a lack of appeal in the industry or that companies are biased. Science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) based companies note that they receive fewer applications from females. But research shows how previously from a young age, gender roles were used to influence career choices – women confined to more junior and less mathematical and scientifically driven roles whilst men are encouraged to proceed with more ‘complex’ and physically labourious careers. Whilst that outdated ideology is disproved and challenged each day, statistics show gradual improvement.
How many women are in STEM careers?
Unlimint being a company of innovators for innovators, is forward thinking and thrives on an inclusive and diverse team. Diversity in cultures, creeds and (of course) gender brings a dynamic array of experiences and approaches to thought patterns, problem solving, negotiations, creativity and leadership style. The importance of hosting a diverse team brings better collaboration and offers room for innovations to continue – a fundamental for the financial tech industry.
How else do you think we’ve become an award-winning fintech company? With offices around the world, the Unlimint team is filled with exceptional individuals, including numerous women within all departments and levels of seniority. Join us in a conversation with our fabulous Chief Marketing Officer in a conversation about women in fintech.
A Conversation with Nadia, Chief Marketing Officer
How and why did you decide to move into the field of fintech?
I started my communications career in the IT department at TNK-BP – a major vertically integrated Russian oil company, headquartered in Moscow. It was Russia’s third-largest oil producer and among the ten largest private oil companies in the world. So, I had already dabbled into the world of tech prior to Unlimint and enjoyed working in an atmosphere of innovation and progress. The fintech industry appealed to me because it is dynamic and has a lot of potential. With the global digitalisation only gaining speed, I believe that financial technologies are the place to be if you want to truly be part of something new and impactful.
How long have you been with Unlimint, and what about the company has inspired you to stay for so long?
I have been with Unlimint for more than 2 years now. I initially joined the company back in 2019 as an event manager and from the start was blown away by the ambition and creative freedom given to me. Not only was I given the opportunity to grow professionally, but I was also given the freedom to grow creatively and was allowed to bring life to my ideas and vision. The team is fantastic too – working alongside true experts in the field, who combine professionalism with passion, really motivates and inspires me.
What has been the highlight of your career so far?
I can pinpoint 2 highlights within my career. The first and one of the most prominent was my participation in organising a 10-year anniversary celebration of a big international TV channel. I was responsible for handling 75 of the invited VIP guests and making sure that everything was running smoothly for them. It was a challenge for sure, but in the end, it was a fantastic feeling to understand that I successfully managed to go through with it. As a result, my work was praised in a couple of books written by one of the guests and I received a mass of thankful reviews.
The second highlight is my work at Unlimint, where I created an Events and PR strategy from scratch and built a phenomenal team. We’re now in a position where we have been expanding our team, where I am able to work with professionals, support them on their journey and watch the marketing of Unlimint soar to success.
How do you think we can combat the lack of confidence young girls and women have about joining STEM careers?
To be honest I think long are gone the days when girls were scared to tackle STEM careers. I am so happy to see more young girls and women going in to tech and science professions; and proving that we are equally capable of excelling in those fields. I would love to see girls all over the world gain more support in these directions to boost confidence from an early age; starting from school and moving on to later years. It would be great to show that we, as women, have options to become who ever we want and that we can achieve anything we put our minds to. I think the most important thing for us is offer educational support and opportunities. This can be done through organisations and initiatives that support girls and women on their paths to greatness, by providing them with the tools and financial investments (especially in developing countries) to truly make a difference.
With the ever-evolving landscape of the fintech world, what advancements are you excited to see?
The rise of mobile-only banks is one advancement I’m eager to see. As a user of mobile banking with my local bank, I find it super convenient and can see this gaining even more momentum in the future. It’s going to be a huge disruption to the way we know traditional banking, and I enjoy watching the continual evolution of fintech to improve our daily lives. But I have to also mention another advancement, which is the rise of digital payments and cashless transactions. The value of the mobile payments market is expected to reach $5.399 billion by 2026, while mobile wallets are predicted to replace physical wallets. We can already see the shift taking place because in 2019 alone, there were around 2.1 billion mobile wallet users. Blockchain is also actively disrupting the industry. We are entering a new era of finance and it is exciting to see what tomorrow holds.
What advice would you give to women who would like to work in the world of fintech?
Study the industry and choose the direction you are most interested in. STEM careers are not solely confined to technical roles, so if you have a passion for HR, IT, office management or, like me, marketing – you can still show your interest in the fintech industry. Skills are applicable. If you love what you do and it brings you joy, you will be more motivated to progress. Also, believe in yourself, because we as women are much stronger than we think we are.