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IWD 2024: From early hunch to a learned lesson
Fri, 8th Mar 2024

The tech world is a whirlwind of innovation, and I've been lucky enough to ride the wave for years. Today, buzzwords like AI, web3, and digital wallets are commonplace, but in 2017, encountering digital wallets as the "newest innovation" felt ground-breaking.

Working on a complex loyalty program, I was electric about its potential. I practically sprinted to share my enthusiasm with my manager, envisioning a future where bulky wallets would be relics of the past. However, the initial excitement quickly collided with reality. The sheer workload and uncertainties surrounding implementation were daunting. It was like trying to fly a plane before learning to taxi – the destination was thrilling, but the journey seemed impossible.

Dejected but not defeated, I channelled my innovative spirit into other projects, like building a pioneering promotional chatbot. While the digital wallet idea lingered, it remained an unfulfilled dream.

Three years later, I took a leap into the world of fintech, eager to delve deeper into the fascinating world of payments. This move proved to be a turning point. It was like finally getting a glimpse behind the curtain, understanding the intricate workings of the magic show I'd been marvelling at for years.

Armed with newfound knowledge and confidence, I revisited my digital wallet concept and decided to put it to the test. I launched a three-month test campaign, fully expecting success. However, the results were underwhelming.

Instead of feeling discouraged, I saw this as a valuable learning opportunity. My initial hesitation back in 2017, the one that led me to shelve the idea, turned out to be prescient. The product itself wasn't the problem; it was the execution. A longer campaign focused on customer education and testing effectiveness would have been crucial.

This experience highlighted the importance of balance in innovation. While the tech world thrives on bold ideas and "failing fast," it's equally important to approach new ventures with a clear head and a well-defined plan.

My tech journey has been a rollercoaster of excitement, setbacks, and ultimately, self-discovery. I'm a firm believer in the power of women in tech, where our inherent empathy and understanding of customer needs can be a significant competitive advantage.

I've found my true calling in advocating for the customer. Through loyalty programs and the power of data science, I help brands connect with their customers in meaningful ways. The tech landscape is constantly evolving, and I'm excited to see where my journey takes me next, with a focus on using technology to create positive customer experiences as my guiding principle.

In essence, what I have learned throughout my career is that it's great to be ambitious, but it's also ok to fail as long as you learn from your mistakes. 
There's so much pressure on female leaders these days that people often forget that it's a journey of continuous learning rather than a perfect straight line to your personal goals or destinations. 
We're all in this together, and I hope that my story can serve as a bit of inspiration for aspiring female leaders.