What's your job about?
Mastercard is an innovative company that develops solutions to the world’s most pressing payments problems, whether this is constructing the best end-user experience, addressing cybersecurity, or creating compelling industry standards such as digital identity. As an Account Manager, my base responsibilities are centred around maintaining strong relations with our clients - all sorts of retailers and financial services - by helping negotiate deals, model projections, and empowering their customers through Mastercard’s products and solutions.
Beyond this, my role is incredibly diverse, reflecting the dynamic nature of a modern, innovative company. For example, in recent weeks, I have been tasked with managing support, client engagements, and even facilitating a research project in the formation of our Australasia division’s response to recent publications from the RBA. I guess my Politics major ended up coming in handy! I’ve also been involved in a project benchmarking digital payment adoption amongst our clients to help them understand their digital provisioning against competitors. Furthermore, joining the Young Professionals (YoPros) business resource group committee is helping me forge internal connections across the country, contributing to initiatives such as campus outreach, social events, and a digital newsletter.
Would a teenager understand my role? Perhaps not, but nor did I completely before I started! It’s difficult to express my surprise at how much I’ve learnt, the cross-business unit opportunities I’ve been given, and how confident I feel in my abilities only five months in – with much more to learn.
What's your background?
My first job, at 15, was as a cashier and drive-thru assistant at a fast-food company. This taught me two key things. Firstly, humility, and secondly, that everyone has different things that make them tick – the way you manage expectations, your humour, what you upsell, is entirely situational. That role gave me somewhat of a social knack, which I carried through to my role in student services at UoM, and eventually, as operations, marketing and partnerships assistant at a local tech startup while I was a student, which satiated my love of tech. Five months ago, I started with Mastercard and I’ve been applying these skills ever since!
Could someone with a different background do your job?
Absolutely. Given that an Account Manager interacts regularly with people of all different backgrounds and responsibilities, it wouldn’t make much sense to suggest that one background, degree structure, or employment history would be the only fit.
What’s more important, rather, is a diverse set of experiences leading to the development of a unique skill set. From experience, such a person needs to be equipped socially to work with teams across business units and in other companies and wrap their head around topics from number-crunching deal negotiations to product knowledge to understanding their clients’ customers. Curiosity is essential, and such a person would hopefully express a willingness to get involved in projects pertaining both specifically to their clients but also the business more generally.
What's the coolest thing about your job?
The best thing about my job is being able to involve myself in a medley of projects. Working with our clients is great, but the opportunity to learn from different business units and work on “bigger picture” projects keeps things exciting. This also allows for close engagement with internal teams and senior staff whose expertise and tips I would not otherwise be exposed to.
As a 21-year-old at the beginning of my career, it’s important that I don’t feel “boxed in.” I have no idea where my career will eventually take me, and I’m sure there are many roles and experiences out there which I have no idea about! Hence, the company culture at Mastercard that fosters curiosity and involvement across multiple areas of business really works for me, so long as I’m careful to not spread myself too thinly.
What are the limitations of your job?
In a nutshell, the cliché that the most worthwhile things are typically the most challenging has proven true for me. The diverse opportunities afforded to me don’t mean my base responsibilities evaporate. Taking on extra work across the business broadens my mind, builds networks, and keeps the day-to-day engaging, but I need to organise my workload, know my limits, and “choose my battles”. Before taking on extra projects, particularly those with a tight delivery timeline, I need to be cognisant of my current workload and make a call on whether it’s doable. I’ve worked some later hours for the more high-pressure projects; but they have proven worthwhile, as these situations are temporary but invaluable in building my skill set.
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