Callum joined Finalta in 2014
as an Analyst
Now a Manager, he has developed a love of all things digital and so has now chosen to help launch our Telco benchmark
Which projects from the past year are you most proud of?
I’ve helped create a new product, Digital Telco, Finalta’s first foray outside of financial services. We needed to understand what would be interesting to operators and took feedback from potential clients to create the right project scope.
The work has paid off - we have a great peer group and our focus now is delivering a great product. The most exciting aspect is the potential for future growth. We’ll be launching the benchmark in Asia and America, as well as expanding in Europe. My aim is to turn Finalta’s Telco practice into the industry-standard that it already is in banking.
What skills have helped you during your journey at Finalta?
I joined Finalta as an Associate Analyst, and my development has been beyond what I expected. My first projects honed my analytics and allowed me to develop softer business skills such as client and time/workflow management. Whilst the numerical, analytical aspect has remained important as a Manager, an increasing emphasis is placed on the other competencies. I now present our results to c-suite level clients, line manage junior Analysts, and independently project manage the new Digital Telco project. This would have been unthinkable for 2014-Callum, and Finalta has played a crucial part in helping me to get here.
How has Finalta facilitated your progression?
Finalta genuinely embodies the meritocratic approach to career progression that most companies boast about, but don’t always follow through on. Promotions are a good example. If you prove that you’re ready, you get promoted, and your performance is the only thing considered -there’s never an instance of multiple people going for one internal role.
As a leader within Finalta, how do you mentor more junior colleagues?
As a Manager, I try to emulate the positive mentorship experiences I had as an Analyst. These ranged from relatively simple things (immediately after a client call my manager might have asked how I thought it went, if we achieved what we wanted, and how I could improve next time), to more substantive, formal conversations such as long-term career aspirations beyond Finalta, and what I could do now to realize these aspirations.
Have you contributed to the learning and/or development of others?
Having joined as an Analyst (like many Managers here), I feel I know the different pain points that they can experience. Knowing what Analysts struggle with allows me to quickly identify what might help my Analysts, whether it is small things, like helping someone with the structure of their report, or bigger things like creating training materials and tutorial videos for our in-house software.
Has there been a situation when you received mentorship that contributed to your progression?
The situation that sticks with me is when I first started presenting to clients – something I hadn’t done in any of my previous jobs. I only presented a short section in the first meeting and received informal feedback about how I could improve. With each meeting I was encouraged to take a bigger role and received feedback from the directors. This has now culminated in me being confident enough to lead whole presentations by myself.
What do you have to bring with you to be successful at Finalta?
Aside from your very best table tennis game? For me, success is driven by firstly, an intellectual curiosity for the project. I’ve covered mainly digital topics, and my success is due to immersing myself in that subject to become a content expert (I’m quite sure there’s no one else in the world with the same knowledge of Polish and South African banking apps!) Secondly, a desire to learn and improve yourself. No one at any level is perfect. A colleague here would always be constructive and you should be open minded to feedback and other opinions.