Judy is one of our Content Creators for the Bitpanda Blog and the Bitpanda Magazine. She writes on various topics surrounding fintech and personal finance, along with translating documents, speaking both German and English fluently. Being one of our oldest team members, Judy (45) expresses that she is unashamed of her age and thinks of it as an attribute instead of a setback.
“My age doesn’t matter and I am treated the same as any other employee.”
So how does your work environment differ from other more “traditional” companies you’ve worked for in the past?
It’s very different and I enjoy working at Bitpanda very much! It’s very team-oriented, quite structured and fast-paced. We have a very diverse working environment which I enjoy because it's something that I personally really value. There's a lot of great and very creative minds in this company! I just can't compare it to another company, I love it.
What kind of companies did you work for before?
Before Bitpanda, I was working in smaller advertising agencies and that was different in many ways. I have a lot of ideas, I have always wanted to write and here I feel very comfortable speaking up and giving my professional opinion. I love that everyone, no matter their role or position, is able to bring their opinion to the table.
So you never thought you’d be working in fintech?
I’ve always worked in financial communication and have thus been interested in fintech since its emergence but I’ve never planned my career around it. When I started planning my career a very long long long time ago (laughs), I didn’t know what would happen or where it would take me. I actually started out in PR and worked as a translator. In fact, I knew of Bitpanda because it was the first place I had heard of where you could buy cryptocurrencies back in 2017.
Yes, and what I distinctly remember about Bitpanda is that it was the only platform that I had considered user-friendly for everyone. So I had a very positive connotation of Bitpanda even before starting here.
So with a part-time job and raising two teenagers, how do you balance your work and personal life?
It's a great work-life balance while working here because the hours are so flexible. Bitpanda has been very accommodating towards my needs regarding me needing to work part-time. And if I need to leave work early to go to a teacher-parent meeting for example, it has never been a problem. Our HR is doing an outstanding job in trying to meet every individual’s needs. This is really something I’ve never encountered before, so it doesn’t go unappreciated.
When you first entered the workplace at Bitpanda, how did you feel when you realised you were the oldest person there?
I’m turning 46 soon so I’m really the oldest person working here. But funnily enough, I did not feel out of place at all from the very beginning. I am a very future-oriented person so I already had that mindset that I think Bitpanda was looking for. My age doesn’t matter and I am treated the same as any other employee here in the team.
Are there any instances where your age is an advantage?
In German they say, "Es wird nichts so heiß gegessen, wie es gekocht wird." In English - nothing is eaten as hot as it is cooked. By that I mean that maybe I have an easier time realising that even though a problem may appear huge, it is not as bad as it first seems. I think that many years of working in fast-paced environments has taught me to keep my cool in crazy situations.
Any experiences from working at what we would call a more “traditional'' company that you've taken and applied to Bitpanda?
I genuinely think that for many more traditional companies it’s high time to reinvent most of their work environment structures because they are obsolete. A lot of employers out there are not in the flow with the times we’re living in. I have the impression that most companies still don't manage to offer a work environment where everyone feels comfortable, everyone feels seen and all people feel confident bringing their ideas to the table. You are usually assigned a role and that is your place. But you never know, anyone in a team may have an idea that is just the idea you know? I don't think good ideas should be assigned to roles or people. Work shouldn’t be about vanities.
What would you say to older potential employees wanting to work at Bitpanda. What qualities should they have?
You should be flexible, open-minded and be prepared for surprises. You should be a people person, that’s very important. Be ready to learn a lot of new things every day and enjoy learning them. Oh, and like a fast-paced environment and love the unexpected!
And do you think you need to know a lot about cryptocurrency to work here?
I think everyone needs to know a lot about cryptocurrency, not just people who work here! Cryptocurrencies are coming and they are not waiting for anyone. The world of finance is bound for great change. But no, generally you don’t need to know a lot about crypto before applying, you will learn a lot once you start here (but it definitely helps!)
Anything else you want to add?
I honestly think the older generation should learn from the younger generation and not the other way around. Younger people are living in the now and working towards the future, while older people have the tendency to look back and rely on ideas and structures they consider tried and tested. The most crucial element in teamwork is how people interact, regardless of their age, and what we can all create together. And that’s more important than who we are or where we are from and I really feel that in Bitpanda’s company values.
I’m here because I want to change the future of investing. I consider this one of the higher purposes in my life. Investing should be accessible for everyone, regardless of where you come from or how old you are. I don't think the traditional system of finance is fair or sustainable so I’m very glad it is changing and that I get to be a part of that change.
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