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5 Skill Sets to be a great Fintech Product Manager​

By Sowmya M – Senior Product Manager, Intuit

In the rapidly evolving world of Financial Technology (FinTech), innovations are reshaping how we conduct transactions, from digital currencies to advanced banking software. This blog delves into the dynamic FinTech ecosystem, highlighting key players such as Robo-advisors, RegTechs, digital banks, and more. It underscores the significance of FinTech in enhancing customer experiences and the pivotal role of Fintech Product Managers in driving innovation. With a focus on the essential skills and mindset required for success in this field, the blog offers invaluable insights for aspiring and current product managers in the FinTech sector.

Key Takeaways:

  • Know your customers better than they know themselves. Understand the emotional needs of customers and the motivation of stakeholders.
  • Go beyond the problem statement and solution.
  • Financial knowledge about the Fintech Domain.
  • Follow zero-error tolerance in making products. The products must have secure, efficient, and high-accuracy properties.
  • Creativity to explore the needs of the customers and the grit to fulfil them
In this article
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    The ‘Financial Technology’ (FinTech) can apply to any innovation where people transact business, from the invention of digital money to double-entry bookkeeping.

    The Fintech Ecosystem

    The following companies are part of the Fintech Ecosystem:

    1. ROBO: Advisors and Personal Finance
    2. RegTechs
    3. Digital Banks and Banking Software Providers
    4. Blockchain/DLT and Bitcoins
    5. Insurtechs
    6. Alternative Finance 
    7. Payment Applications

    Fintech is very beneficial for customers. In this digital age, Fintech has become a global industry and is still growing. In the Fintech ecosystem, there are various possibilities to create innovative ideas that will have a heavy effect on finance and the quality of the life of customers. It gives extreme ownership and a high-energy atmosphere to product managers and offers incredible professional/personal growth.

    Who can be a Fintech Product Manager?

    Anyone can be a Fintech product manager, anyone who deals with production or with service providers. For example, Engineering, Content Management, Business Analysis, etc.

    Also, Start-up Founders, Investors, Fresh Undergraduates, Fresh MBAs, and Tech Leaders (GMs) could be Fintech Product Managers.

    Core Skill Sets of Product Managers

    The following are the core skill sets of product managers:

    1. Empathy: A product manager has the will to know about customer needs, emotions, and relations between the customer and the product. 
    2. Data-Driven and Analytical: A manager has the skill to collect relevant data about the product and analyze the data to dig relevant information from it. 
    3. OPC: Organizing, Prioritization, and Communication

    Elaborative and Most Important Skill Sets of Fintech Product Managers

    4. Empathy: The Fintech Product Managers must have a high understanding of the needs of customers and stakeholders and meet the emotional needs of customers and the motivational needs of stakeholders.
    5. Customers: Every customer has an individual financial pain point, so products that appeal emotionally have to be created.
    6. Stakeholders: A “Fintech Product Manager” needs to be competent to deal with various stakeholders so that they do not complain about innovative products.
    7. Business Mindset: The Fintech Product Managers must have a business mindset. He/she should have knowledge about business, legal matters, finance, compliance, and risk.

    Some questions you might need to answer:

    How will we fund a new loan product?

    Are we using the right factors in determining the risk of a borrower?
    How should we structure the legal agreement with our clients?
    Do our customer service teams have the information that is needed to respond quickly to client requests?

    1. Domain Knowledge: The Fintech Product Managers must have knowledge of the Fintech industry and global regulations about finance. Fintech Product Managers should update themselves with changes in customer behaviour to win the competition.

    2. Detail-oriented with Zero Error Tolerance: The Fintech Product Managers have to have zero tolerance for products. The products need to be secure, efficient, and have high accuracy.
    Creativity and Grit: Need creativity to explore the needs of customers at every zone and to keep motivating the team to move forward despite constraints. 

    3. Sowmya’s advice to all Fintech Product Managers: Focus on the problem, not on the solution. Find out customer problems and brainstorm, to create ways to eliminate these problems.

    Frequently Asked Questions

    The FinTech ecosystem encompasses a range of companies and technologies aimed at enhancing and automating the delivery and use of financial services. Key components include ROBO advisors and personal finance, RegTechs, digital banks and banking software providers, blockchain/DLT and Bitcoins, Insurtechs, alternative finance, and payment applications. This ecosystem is pivotal in driving innovation, improving customer experiences, and offering significant growth opportunities for professionals in the field.

    Virtually anyone involved in production or service provision can become a FinTech Product Manager. This includes individuals from engineering, content management, business analysis, and more. Additionally, start-up founders, investors, fresh undergraduates, fresh MBAs, and tech leaders (GMs) are also well-suited for roles as FinTech Product Managers, given their diverse backgrounds and skill sets.

    Product Managers in the FinTech industry need to possess a unique blend of skills, including empathy to understand customer needs and emotions, data-driven and analytical skills to collect and analyze relevant product data, and the ability to organize, prioritize, and communicate effectively (OPC). These core skills are essential for developing products that meet customer needs and drive business success.

    Domain knowledge is crucial for FinTech Product Managers. They must have a thorough understanding of the FinTech industry, including global financial regulations and changing customer behaviors. This knowledge enables them to stay competitive and innovate effectively within the rapidly evolving financial technology landscape.

    Sowmya advises FinTech Product Managers to focus on identifying and understanding customer problems rather than jumping straight to solutions. By deeply understanding the challenges customers face, Product Managers can brainstorm and develop innovative ways to solve these problems, thereby creating products that truly meet customer needs and drive success in the FinTech ecosystem.

    About the Author:

    Sowmya M – Senior Product Manager, Intuit

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