Women must call out gender bias, even it makes them "uncomfortable", says fintech global community boss

By John Reynolds on Tuesday 8 March 2022

Alternative LendingDigital BankingSavings and Investment

Susanne Chishti, founder and CEO of Fintech Circle, has urged women in fintech to call out gender bias in the workplace, be it in terms of salary or their voices not being heard.

Women must call out gender bias, even it makes them
Image source: £BreakTheBias/ITN Productions.

Female fintech workers should call out gender bias in the workplace, even if it makes them “uncomfortable”, the CEO of a global fintech community told Louise Minchin on an online TV show.

Susanne Chishti, founder and CEO of Fintech Circle, said: “For those of us who don’t have the bias but suffer from people who have got such a bias, I would say it’s now the time to call them out.

“Although it might be uncomfortable, but they have to do that because it is the right thing to do.”

Chishti, who heads up an organisation involving investors, entrepreneurs and finance professionals which organises events and workshops, urged women in fintech to call out gender bias, be it in terms of salary discrimination or their voices not being heard at work.

A lack of female leadership in fintech, and female representation in fintech, has been a long-standing criticism of the industry.

According to industry figures, less than 5.6 per cent of fintech CEOs are women globally.

Chishti was speaking on International Women’s Day on an ITN Production show called £BreakTheBias, which can be seen online here.

The Fintech Circle CEO, who holds several fintech non-executive director roles, said inroads had been made to shatter the glass ceiling in fintech but more work was needed.

She added: "When I think back to my student days, now more than 25 years ago, I remember I bought a book ‘How to break the glass ceiling?

"And I thought at that time, 25 years ago, that by now we wouldn’t have a glass ceiling anymore. Unfortunately, we still do and it’s still not broken, it’s shattered, which is a good thing. But it’s not yet completely gone."

She also called on fintech organisations to take a hard look at themselves. 

She said: “In order to break the bias, the first thing, which is the hardest thing is to realise: have you got one? Have you got unconscious bias that women are supposed to stay at home? Women are supposed to only have junior roles! 

"Have you got any bias against women in top leadership positions? And if you do then you need to start with yourself.”

Sign up for our newsletters


Your daily 7am download of all things alternative finance and fintech.

Fintech and alternative finance headlines with an exclusive Editor's Note each week. Delivered Monday at midday.

AltFi's new weekly US newsletter breaking down the ins and outs of America's burgeoning fintech sector. Delivered Monday 9am EST/ 6am PST.