Recently, Jason Hartman– speaker, author, financial guru and noted podcaster- chatted with our own Sheree Thornsberry, EVP and Head of Payments. The interview, published in Thrive Global, touches on numerous topics including Thornberry’s own history in the payments industry, her commitment to the issue of gender parity in financial services leadership and ongoing work of bringing financial literacy to all. The conversation also encompassed new projects happening at Meta and anecdotes about Meta’s history and growth as a company. Below are a series of snapshots from the exchange

1. Teaming with Mastercard and Operation Hope. “Operation Hope is a nonprofit organization that provides financial literacy, empowerment and economic education, particularly in areas where people don’t have easy access to those mainstream services,” Thornberry said. “Recently, we sponsored a daylong women’s entrepreneurial program in the Atlanta area with Mastercard.” Moving forward, the goal is to expand the pilot program to other American cities.

2. The “all-white boys club” in financial institutions is changing. According to Thornsberry: “Social media has shifted the world for us and helped to shine a spotlight on differences in gender, race and sexual orientation. Because of this, it’s more broadly accepted that this is what the world looks like, and that world has to be represented in the boardroom.”

3. Honoring different perspectives is good for business. “Building diversity within your leadership team is extremely important,” said Thornsberry. “It leads to a better team, as well as better overall business results.”

4. Improving financial literacy begins with access. When asked about Meta’s plans for helping Americans understand and utilize financial services, Thornsberry said it begins with access- 8.4 million American are unbanked with another 24.2 million underbanked. “At Meta, one of our goals is to create that ongoing access,” she said. “Overall, we need more education about what it means to be financially literate and responsible.”

Throughout the interview, Thornsberry spoke about her core values of creating opportunities for women and expanding financial access for all, and how those values help shape the work she does every day.

Read the full Thrive Global interview here.

Infographic: What consumers want from businesses in 2019
MetaBank Named 2020 Partner Bank of the Year