For Amber’s new Women In Tech interview series, we speak with female thought leaders from around the world to hear their experience growing a career in tech and to get their advice on overcoming challenges and adversity during their career.
For this week’s interview, we caught up with Holly Stephens, Chief Marketing Officer of Paybear, to talk diversity and advice on how to build a career in crypto.
Can you tell us a little about what you do and what a typical day looks like for you?
I am the Chief Marketing Officer for Paybear.io. Prior to this I was the Chief Marketing Officer for Beam Wallet. It’s a recent new move to Paybear, within the new role I will be crafting the business strategy, marketing plans, supporting the development of our products and building out our team.
A typical day for me usually involves early morning calls with the team as we are all based remotely. I’ll work through the plans of the business and partnerships we need to work with. I will then take late night calls to accommodate multiple time zones. The day doesn’t start without Aussie coffee though!
I actually wasn’t sure what I wanted to do when I left University (many moons ago now!). I had been on an internship and was with Xerox and was accepted into their graduate scheme.
Shortly after that I realised it’s a great industry to be in that is constantly involving. That’s where I saw my career continuing. From then on, I built a tech startup during my 9-5 job and was approached by Google to run a programme for small businesses to train them online. This opened the opportunity to move to Australia to run Google Pay for Australia and New Zealand. Shortly after that I started my own tech marketing agency, launched Triangles, pursued working on my own tech startups in my spare time and started working for Beam Wallet.
I would say I am not ‘techy’ but I understand technology, working with technology teams and can communicate products to the audience. You don’t need to be a coder or technical to get into tech. You need varied skill sets for a company to be successful.
Many women in the tech industry have felt their gender has affected the way they are treated in the workplace and industry. Have you ever been in a situation like that? How did you handle it?
I have never felt like my gender has been affected in any way. I have received a tremendous amount of support from mentors (male and female) who have helped me along the way.
Being a female leader in technology is no different from being a leader in any industry. Yes, technology moves fast, it especially does in startups and you need to constantly pivot, but you still need support, growth opportunities and also need to help your team achieve what they want to.
What advice would you give to a woman starting her career in the tech industry? Is there any advice you wish you had known at the start of your career?
The technology industry can move very quickly and it is constantly changing. Try to understand the basics of the technology and how it can be applied. Don’t get too overwhelmed with learning EVERYTHING about the product, the technology and product teams are there for that. Always ask for help, try to contribute to the discussion and make small steps in your career to get what you want to achieve.