By Emmanuel Oluebube, Senior Correspondent UK
There is a smart, powerful phrase that underlines the importance of visibility and role models in life: “If you can see it, you can be it.” And it has stronger resonance than most motivational slogans you might see printed on a coffee cup, as it speaks to the power of those who blaze a trail and shine a light for the next generation.
To celebrate International Women’s Day 2022, CR2 talked to four women who are leaders, mentors and champions for gender equality and opportunity in the banking, Fintech and the wider financial services sectors, about their own journeys, the importance of visibility and how equality and diversity have become powerful forces for change.
The contributors to this insightful report include Chief Operations Officer, Botswana Savings Bank Pedzani Tafa; Chief Executive Officer, Seychelles Commercial Bank Annie Vidot; General Manager, West and Central Africa at Network International Payment Services Chinwe Uzoho; and Vice President, Customer Relationships at CR2, Ana Nedeljkovic.
Up until very recently, young women looking to a career in banking, Fintech and the wider financial services sector might have had a long search for role models in leadership positions. As many industries woke up to the importance of diversity, true meritocracy and open opportunity, much of the world of banking and financial services appeared to be behind the curve.
Or as Ana Nedeljkovic says, “Ask most people to picture a banker, and they’ll still see a man in a suit.” But this is changing. Fast.
All of the interviewees are successful in their fields and passionate about encouraging the next generation of talented young women who are looking for a career in a sector where they can be a positive force for change and progress for people and communities across the world.
As banking becomes a daily used tool and a resource that we all need at our fingertips – and with the theme of International Women’s Day 2022 declaring “Gender equality today for a sustainable tomorrow” – these four women talk about real change and how to achieve it.