Updating Results

Mastercard

4.3
  • 1,000 - 50,000 employees

Joanne Greiff

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.

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?

I was brought up in England and then Australia. One of my favourite parts at school was politics and debating, where I had to analyse a problem, work with a team, create my own spin, and then present my solution. I love talking, deliberation, and ideas. I also loved researching different scientific topics and teaching myself about new technologies – when I was 14, I taught myself some basic HTML and Javascript to help my friend build an interactive website for a video game server. I think this curiosity stemmed from trips I took with my family, and later, on my own – I have always left dwelling on the politics, ideologies, industries, and events that shaped such different places and cultures. These technical and social curiosities led me to study Economics and Politics when I moved interstate for Uni at 17.

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.

3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...

  1. It’s okay to be intimidated by options and have no idea what your future looks like career-wise. Continuously cultivate your interests, take opportunities as they come, and use these to demonstrate your value and learning agility to future employers.
  2. Unless we’re talking technical professions like medicine or coding, completing a generalist degree in arts or commerce won’t necessarily limit your options, but rather broaden them. Here, the importance of your non-coursework endeavours comes in.
  3. Stay busy! Start making steps towards building your skill set, no matter how small, as soon as possible. I found student life became generally less stressful for me when I took casual work, uni club committee opportunities, and eventually an internship – despite being busier. These experiences gave me clarity in terms of what I personally wanted/did not want for my career, as well as skills to point to when eventually applying for graduate positions.