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Women's History Month: Meet Mariam Ogunbambi

INFLUENTIAL: Mariam Ogunbambi says women must seize their chance to better themselves

BEFORE JOINING Starling Bank, Mariam Ogunbambi was a consultant with just four years’ experience working in the delivery phase on three high-profile projects in the public sector and financial services industry.

During this time, she was exposed to the technology industry with a professional career commencing at IBM, one of the largest technology companies in the world.

Now, the programme manager shines in her role at Starling Bank and feels passionate about wanting to achieve within the banking industry and for its consumers.

Her role includes delivering the interaction between Starling’s own systems and the wider banking, payments and financial landscape; working with those from fintech start-ups to National Central Banks.

Q: What do you love about your job?

Mariam Ogunbambi: No day is ever the same and I am constantly learning and developing my knowledge. In addition, being passionate about our mission at Starling to build a better bank for our customers helps me face any challenges I encounter. This, coupled with the fact that I work with great people makes those challenges enjoyable.

Q: Which women inspire you?

MO: There are so many I admire and who inspire me so we would be here all day if I had to list every one. However, to name a few; my mum, Michelle Obama, Sheryl Sandberg and Christine Lagarde.

These are women with different backgrounds who are successful and stand up for what they believe in. I have learnt a lot about self-confidence, drive, but also humility and being able to give back from them.

Q: What challenges do women face that you would like to see change in the future?

MO: Oh gosh, where do I start?! I think the area that hits close to home would be the challenges that we face in the technology sector. Although, there has been some progress towards gender diversity it is still male-

Historically, men were widely recognised in this sector and it seemed the environment, the language and the culture only catered for them. I think this went on to have a downstream effect on how women were perceived at having a career in technology.

I think that we can do a lot more to raise awareness of the fact that technology is gender agnostic and having more female role models and mentorships could encourage more women to pursue careers in technology.

Q: What advice would you give to young women following in your footsteps?

MO: Don’t be afraid to take risks – I didn’t have a technical background, but I did not let that stop me from applying for a job with one of the largest technology companies in the world because I knew that I could add value to the company.

When an opportunity arises don’t be afraid to seize it, but it must be mutually beneficial to you and either your poten- tial employer/ business partner or customer.

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