“Say ‘Yes’ and figure it out later” with Ashley Lomelin and Tyler Galagher

Interview originally featured on MEDIUM || “Say ‘Yes’ and figure it out later” with Ashley Lomelin and Tyler Galagher

Say ‘Yes’ and figure it out later. — Never miss an opportunity that could end up being your big shot. I almost didn’t take the job at Microsoft because I was scared of what I would do after my contract ended. I made the leap and ended up learning so much that my previous job hired me back full-time with a promotion and a raise.

As a part of my series about strong female finance leaders, I had the pleasure of interviewing Ashley Lomelin of My Allegro. Ashley is a marketing and communications professional with Allegro, a digital debit card bringing financial solutions the underbanked and unbanked. Passionate about creating connections and bringing their community resources & literacy, she has secured publications in the finance world. She has also had the opportunity to work with ‘The Center for Financial Freedom,’ the education site by Allegro by producing financial templates and research reports their members.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you tell us the “backstory” about what brought you to the Banking/Finance field?

I started my Marketing career when I moved to Washington and worked for Cascadelink, an internet company now acquired by WaveG. Shortly after, I started a contract position with Microsoft in their SCC as a Social Media Community Manager, while still holding my position with Cascadelink. After two short years in Washington, I made my way back to LA as a PR Account Manager in the Special Events field. My success as an Account Manager stood as a testament to the Marketing and Communications world, but I knew I needed to go back to the Tech World. During that transition, I was introduced to My Allegro, an online digital debit card, combining my love for technology and the greater need to understand business and finance.

I currently hold the Communications Professional title and am in the process of completing my MBA. Finance is always dubbed as the “big bad corporate” world but I have also seen the advantages and many programs set out to help those with little to no financial literacy. With the experience I will continue to create for myself and the education I will attain, I hope to grow the communications team and extend the mobility of such programs.

I have appreciated the mission our company is pushing. Aside from the digital convenience of our debit card, our team is working hard to help our Allegro community reach their goals and encouraging a dialogue that would normally be intimidating between our community and their banking needs.

Can you share with our readers the most interesting or amusing story that occurred to you in your career so far?

A personal project is The Center For Financial Freedom (TCFFF), the education site created by My Allegro. It was introduced along with the launch of our mobile app. The site is equipped with literacy and templates and financial articles to help our community understand the basics of handling their finances. This is a very exciting project because it comes with transparency and simplicity needed to guide those type of conversations. It is complementary and will have financial rewards for members who complete certain educations and quizzes found on their My Allegro app.

We are currently in the process of planning our launch party that will also announce more features we are implementing through this program. I have become passionate about finances with the release of TCFFF because I now have the opportunity to help others reach stability and other financial goals.

Are you working on any exciting new projects now? How do you think that will help people?

My Allegro has recently launched the My Allegro app, an app devoted to building a community based on our members’ financial needs and goals by providing the tools to achieve them. My Allegro was created to change the complicated and costly approach of traditional banking, by providing a transparent platform and based off the trust of our members. The My Allegro app offers a wide range of discounted financial products and services, member benefits and access to unsecured consumer loans. Through the mobile application, members enjoy complete services and benefits gained from their Choice or Advantage package.

As part of our commitment to help members reach their financial goals, we have also launched The Center For Financial Freedom. The Center for Financial Freedom is equipped with literacy and modules to guide you to financial success. Our center will also serve as a resource of educational reports and trending news that will provide you with updates and policies for financial freedom. Members can also enjoy financial rewards for completing modules found through their Allegro Membership. Each module is comprised of easy-to-read literacy and quizzes based on the lessons to ensure you are getting the most out of your Allegro. Our team is always here for our members and we are so excited to see these programs launched and see how they help the members of our community.

What do you think makes your company stand out? Can you share a story?

My Allegro was created with a commitment to building a community that supports its members by assisting them during their financial ups and downs. Through community, transparency and simplicity we strive to build a strong, supportive, all-inclusive community based on understanding our members’ financial needs and goals by providing the tools to achieve them.

Our commitment is unparalleled to other debit cards by providing those in the unbanked and underbanked community a support that provides lending options(loans options?), credit builder assistance and a holistic team dedicated to bringing resources to reach financial freedom.

Wall Street and Finance used to be an “all white boys club”. This has changed a lot recently. In your opinion, what caused this change?

I believe that this reason is answered through various causes.For one, the rise of FinTech has been accompanied by the work of Marketing and PR, fields run predominantly by women. It is forcing women who are already in those industries to understand a world that may have been so foreign to them to create better narratives and communicate basic banking services to an audience that is also comprised of women.

The rise in technology is allowing younger generations to rely more on investing and financial apps — reaching out to advisors or a financial guide solely for interactive support. This nurture and holistic relationship between a consumer and financial advisor is pushing away the “The Wolf of Wall Street” stigma and welcoming a wave of educated women.

We must also give credit to the general paradigm shift in regards to women in the workplace. The professional world has seen an increase of professional women in every type of job, and the finance world isn’t immune to this change. Today’s customers want to follow a company that reflects not only their complete audience, but also a company that supports this line of females competing with their male counterparts.

Of course, despite the progress, we still have a lot more work to do to achieve parity. According to this report in CNBC, less than 17 percent of senior positions in investment banks are held by women. In your opinion or experience, what 3 things can be done by a)individuals b)companies and /or c) society to support this movement going forward?

a.) Find your passion for the job and let that be your drive. Remember that your job is not just a way to pay your bills, but a means to create a career with a mission — to create impact and help others by providing answers or a service that will make their lives easier.

Remember that complacency is accompanied by a lack of progress — so, never stop learning.

You may already have a higher financial literacy than the average American because you can define key factors in your own savings routine but something newsworthy that happened today can changed the market pattern and financial world from yesterday.

There is not just one path to finance. Find a mentor and use that guide to find your place in the finance world. This is also true if you find yourself in a position that could mentor a female who has found herself in a world predominantly run by males.

b.) Financial services companies are normalizing the gender equality which is pushing forward a support of women in management. A larger number of females in these positions promotes(creates) consistency in talent as recruitment is being competed by double the “normal” sample. Many successful companies are also normalizing benefits that were previously sought out by working mothers, now in both parents — such a maternal and paternal leave, flexible work schedules for both and BLANK. This LESSENs the scrutiny behind women who were afraid to take advantage of such benefits due to the repercussions and reputation held against them.

For many, it isn’t about getting women into internships or entry-level jobs, rather holding a women with experience to stay in their banking job. By normalizing these benefits amongst all genders and accepting a parent-lifestyle, companies are competing against the hardest opposition and promoting a career that support parenthood.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story about that?

I definitely do and I am lucky to have met him in my early twenties. I had just moved up to Washington and was using the entire salary I was getting from my first big girl job towards rent, necessities and day-to-day expenses. This left zero nothing extra to save for a rainy day or even get ahead on my student loans. What made him approachable was the power he had to add some charisma into his many speeches about the importance of opening up your world to your finances.

When he first introduced me to this knowledge, he approached it in a manner that allowed me to still feel in control of my choices — and their consequences — and truly gain my own knowledge aside from the basics like savings and expenses.Famous for his famous “dad” talks and a man who has truly made his way in his own career and life, used baseball analogies to understand the foundational strategy and the importance of practicing what you know.

Because of this holistic trust, I wanted to start thinking like him and hope to create my own in my financial and professional life. This desire to learn about my money led to this job that allows me to do the same for people that I may not know need it or are even listening.

To this day, I continue to seek out his advice — whether he knows it or not. I used to be the stereotypical millennial who knew nothing about becoming financially independent and would not know how to tell you how much she owed in student loans. I am now sharing the education I have acquired and fine-tuning specific skills to further grow my career.

Can you please give us your favorite “Life Lesson Quote”? Can you share how that was relevant to you in your life?

Below are my 3 mantras I live by:

Say ‘Yes’ and figure it out later. — Never miss an opportunity that could end up being your big shot. I almost didn’t take the job at Microsoft because I was scared of what I would do after my contract ended. I made the leap and ended up learning so much that my previous job hired me back full-time with a promotion and a raise.

If it’s good enough, it’s not good enough. — Give every task every bit of skill in you, and you will not be disappointed in the results. I have been asked many times how I have been able to accomplish specific tasks and projects in my short professional career, and I can guarantee that it came from always trying to upstage myself with every new assignment.

Compliance is always accompanied by lack of progress. — I am a true believer in education. Whether it’s for your professional position or a hobby you want to improve on, you must keep pushing yourself to be better. Plu,s if you stay complacent, especially at work, the person next to you at work might just pass you up.

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the greatest amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. 🙂

I would love to improve access to education for girls primarily in developing countries. I wrote my Senior Thesis about the various factors that hinder a girl’s education, especially in these countries, and would love to become better involved or even collaborate with existing foundations that putting their efforts to combat the stigma and obstacles placed on these growing girls.

Thank you for these great insights!

About The Author:

Tyler Gallagher is the CEO and Founder of Regal Assets, a “Bitcoin IRA” company. Regal Assets is an international alternative assets firm with offices in the United States, Canada, London and Dubai focused on helping private and institutional wealth procure alternative assets for their investment portfolios. Regal Assets is an Inc. 500 company and has been featured in many publications such as Forbes, Bloomberg, Market Watch and Reuters. With offices in multiple countries, Regal Assets is uniquely positioned as an international leader in the alternative assets industry and was awarded the first ever crypto-commodities license by the DMCC in late 2017. Regal Assets is currently the only firm in the world that holds a license to legally buy and sell cryptos within the Middle East and works closely with the DMCC to help evolve and grow the understanding and application of blockchain technology. In addition to his role with Regal Assets, Tyler is a regular contributor to Forbes, Arianna Huffington’s Thrive Global and Authority Magazine. Tyler has also been featured in many news publications and has been a guest expert on “The News with Ed Shultz”. Tyler is a proud member of the Forbes Finance Council a private invite only-group of hand-selected industry leaders.

You can find the original interview on MEDIUM.


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