Tell us what you do.
I work in global product partnerships – our job is to develop commercial relationships between TrueLayer and other fintechs or financial institutions. These partnerships enable us to build value-added products and features which aren’t mandated in the PSD2 regulatory scope.
What brings you to TrueLayer?
I started here when it was 20 people and it’s now over 200! My goal was to join a hyper-growth, early-stage startup to learn all aspects of a business. I was impressed by TrueLayer’s business model and leadership, and I also really believe in the API economy and the potential of open banking.
How did you get here?
I have a background in strategy and consulting, so I started TrueLayer in the business operations team. That gave me great exposure to different parts of the business, from sales to product to engineering. I wanted to better understand the workings of a product-driven company, so I pivoted into product management. I learnt a lot there, but wanted to sharpen my negotiation and commercial skills so I moved into global product partnerships.
Describe a typical day.
It varies! At the start of a deal, there is a lot of analysis, such as understanding product gaps, or what customers want that we don’t currently offer, or which companies we could partner with. Then, we reach out to potential partners and start discovery and shortlisting, working closely with the product team to validate technical compatibility.
From then onwards, it’s more of a commercial role. It might involve convincing banks to work with us, being persistent to keep a deal moving or unblocking roadblocks. In the later stages, we do contract negotiation and have to work closely with legal and compliance. Once we hand over the deal to the product team, we stay involved to manage the relationship.
What’s the best thing about working at TrueLayer?
The flexibility of working in a high growth environment is empowering – I’ve been able to move across departments and try new roles several times now. I’ve always felt supported to develop and have been given the opportunity to try new things.
What would you say to someone considering joining?
If you want to work somewhere that is inclusive and collaborative, come to TrueLayer. If you’re excited by a fast-changing environment and the thought of building open banking and the API economy, then this is the place for you!
If you weren't in global partnerships...
I might have been a therapist! I’ve done some introductory training in counselling and I’m really interested in psychology and mental health topics. I'm interested in the concept of listening deeply to someone and guiding them to self awareness.
What keeps you motivated?
I like a challenge and and I’m a very curious person. If there’s a problem to solve, I find that very energising.
When you’re not at work, where might we find you?
Recording my video podcast 'British-ish' about Chinese and British culture. I launched it with a friend a month ago and we’ve gained around 8000 followers! We discuss topics like mental health, philosophy and entrepreneurship from the perspective of Chinese living abroad.
If not doing that, then eating, or playing Guqin – a 7 string instrument from 1 b.c China, that I’ve been learning during lockdown.
Any books, podcasts or films you’d recommend?
The Choice – a book by Dr Edith Eger. She was an Auschwitz survivor and this is her autobiography – she’s still alive and a 92 year old American psychologist! I listened to the audio book and it left me in floods of tears at 2am! It’s very inspiring – it’s about about survival and forgiveness and the importance of mindset.
Also, When Neitzsche Wept by Dr. Irvin D. Yalom – a psychologist and existential psychotherapist. It’s a novel and in it you learn about philosophy and get insights on how to live life.
Finally, Think Again by Adam Grant – it's a business book about mindset, how you challenge yourself and develop original and critical thinking, and it’s backed by a lot of research.