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Women in Payments Australia: 8 Insights for Success

Women in Payments Australia Insights

Women in Payments continues to go from strength to strength, expanding its footprint globally and running events from Canada (where it was born) and the U.S., to Australia and now the UK. ACI has been a proud global sponsor of Women in Payments since 2014, which has allowed me personally – along with a number of colleagues around the world – to be a part of the growing calendar of Women in Payments events that take place around the globe.

The main theme of this year’s WIP Australian Symposium (held in Melbourne in November) was ‘Disruptive Evolution.’ Sessions covered the current hot topics in payments; Open Banking, real-time payments, frictionless commerce, and the data sharing and protection revolution. One message was clear across these topics – the devil is in the details, and there are still a lot of those detail balls in the air… so stay tuned.

Interestingly, it was the more human or HR driven themes that shone through in the panels and keynotes.

One quote from the main stage that summarized this nicely was, “The future of payments is not about payments at all, it’s about experience.” Experience in this context is all about the customer journey and that customer is – you guessed it – a real-life person.

So, it’s a good fit to be thinking about people. Words of wisdom from session leaders throughout the event were peppered with advice on how we need to adapt to survive and thrive in the brave new world of fast-paced change that is payments, without losing sight of the human aspect.

Sticking with this theme, here are eight more insights gleaned from the day, based on the human drivers that lead to success:

  1. The key themes driving change are connectivity, flexibility and pace. Discipline must be applied to master these three drivers in combination to avoid the evil downsides that come with being ‘always on.’
  2. Agility in learning is key. It’s not what you know now, it’s your ability to learn. It’s more important to have cultural fit with the team than to know subject matter encyclopedically.
  3. Diversity and inclusion creates strength in the team (gender, race, age, etc.). Belonging takes it to the next level: diversity is inviting people to the dance floor, inclusion is inviting them to dance and belonging means dancing like no one is watching!
  4. Cater for the future workforce. Millennials are predicted to have 17 jobs across five different fields, so it’s critical to engage with them, provide learning opportunities and invest in upskilling the team and yourself.
  5. The power of story-telling to be able to connect technology for business outcomes. They say that a picture paints a thousand words and story-telling is the way you’re painting your picture.
  6. Learning to manage uncertainty with a growth mindset is essential. “The best becomes the enemy of the good.” Women often strive for perfection, and perfection is not a reality in this fast-paced world.
  7. Don’t distinguish between ‘role’ and ‘soul.’ Show up as yourself and be who you are. Authenticity is everything.
  8. Look after yourself so that you can be your best self. You need flexibility to achieve work and personal life balance, exercise and sleep. Women have incredible resilience, but don’t forget that we’re in this for the long game.

A comment from Kristy Duncan, Founder and CEO of Women in Payments, nicely summarized what I think many #womeninpayments know – “Your network is your single biggest career asset.”

Never a truer word was said, Kristy! The Women in Payments symposiums provide a fabulous opportunity to network with, and hear the stories of, women involved in all aspects of payments across the region. Networking builds payments knowledge, creates access to leaders and the rising stars, and connects people for future career opportunities. Let’s get out there and embrace those key drivers of change (connectivity, flexibility and pace) and build some great relationships. It’s the people that make the difference in business, so network like the future depends on it.