Meet this week’s Unstoppable Woman of FinTech, Emily Man, Investor at Redpoint Ventures. Read more below on Emily’s journey in becoming a leading lady in the FinTech realm and more on her inspiring advice that has helped her in getting where she is today.
Q: How did you end up as a leader in the FinTech Industry? Briefly, what has your career journey looked like?
A: I started my career as a public markets investor, analyzing what moves stocks and impacts how a company trades. This provided the foundation for my investment philosophy that I still carry today. From there, I joined Point72 Ventures, a fintech-focused fund investing in early stage startups with a deep thematic focus. I had the opportunity to deeply explore how our financial system works today and partner with startups looking to reimagine how financial products are manufactured and delivered. Now, I’m an investor at Redpoint focused on fintech and SaaS investing.
Q: Who // what inspires you most? Is there a quote you “live by”? Are there any mentors that have helped you get where you are today?
A: My mother is my hero. As first-generation immigrants, she & my father worked to put themselves through school. She’s the most selfless person I know and is a true embodiment of tenacity and relentless curiosity and she juggled a successful career in academia alongside raising two (I’ll admit, very difficult) kids. On a bad day, she’d always tell me “tomorrow is another day” which is a mantra I still live by!
Q: What is an accomplishment you are most proud of?
A: Working with founders is the most rewarding part of my job. It gives me so much joy to celebrate their successes and support them in tough times. There’s no such thing as a linear journey and I’m so proud of the teams that make it through the toughest moments. The small things like making introductions to potential customers or investors that really click or being the person to put two like-minded great people in touch is my favorite feeling!
Q: What advice would you give to young women looking to start a career in the industry? What skills do you find most helpful in this career?
A: Don’t be afraid to ask! Whether that’s for new responsibilities, a raise, for help or otherwise, don’t be afraid to advocate for yourself and what you deserve. I have a great group of female friends and peers who I constantly use as a sounding board – they’re my biggest supporters who also remind me that it’s good to ask for what you deserve. Similarly, never underestimate the power of a good cold email! If there’s someone you respect or admire who can help you achieve your goals, it doesn’t hurt to just reach out.
Q: What does digital transformation mean to you and/ or your organization? What advances or trends in technology are you most excited about? Is there one piece of technology you can’t live without?
A: Digital transformation is the underpinning of my entire industry! There’s something so rewarding about working with passionate entrepreneurs who are tackling some of our world’s biggest problems. We’re still early days in many fundamental shifts in technology – cloud, globalization, web3 – and there’s so much more that can and will be built at an accelerating pace.
I’m currently very excited about the reinvention of financial services. This is happening both in the way that financial services are distributed as well as how they’re manufactured. In the next decade, we will see major shifts in how consumers & businesses interact with financial products day to day. I’ve written a couple of articles on the potential of verticalized fintech as well as the promise of embedded finance.
Q: What do you see as the biggest, most pressing issue for women in our industry? How can women (or allies) help other women advance within our industry?
A: Studies show that men are judged on potential while women are judged on proven capabilities & experience. If you look back at the stories successful men tell about their careers, there’s oftentimes a pivotal moment where someone took a chance on them or gave them an opportunity they were not yet qualified for. Those moments don’t exist at the same rate for women and we (both women and allies) need to take initiative to counteract that bias and make those opportunities available.
Q: What are some of your favorite ways to spend your time outside of work? Any tips for relaxation and destressing?
A: Food is my love language! I’m a huge foodie so I love spending time outside of work exploring new neighborhoods and restaurants or trying out new recipes. It’s a way to experience new cultures and expand my horizons and always gives me something to look forward to after a long week.
Q: Is there anything else you would like to share?
A: I’m a proud fintech nerd and I love learning about new markets and emerging trends. If there’s anyone out there that’s building something new in fintech or wants to learn more about the trends that I’m following – my inbox is always open!