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Meet The Female Leaders of Finance: “We’ve been experiencing an influx of new thinking and awareness around unconscious biases.” with Megan Murray of eMoney Advisor

I grew up during a time when women weren’t always expected to work. Fast forward to today and it’s apparent that an amazing force of women are demonstrating their capabilities and proving their value on their own terms. We’ve also been experiencing an influx of new thinking and awareness around unconscious biases. People are becoming […]


I grew up during a time when women weren’t always expected to work. Fast forward to today and it’s apparent that an amazing force of women are demonstrating their capabilities and proving their value on their own terms. We’ve also been experiencing an influx of new thinking and awareness around unconscious biases. People are becoming more open-minded and embracing different perspectives in the workforce — especially from women, as they bring a different perspective based on a different set of life experiences. I think those same perspectives have deepened organizations insights and helped prepare them to face unique challenges that arise.

I had the pleasure to interview Megan Murray, Head of Finance at eMoney Advisor. As Head of Finance, Megan has guided financial planning and analysis, strategy, pricing, accounting, billing and facility management functions since 2015. Megan and her team ensure that eMoney can both maintain its fast innovation and thrive financially through its growth. Prior to joining eMoney, Megan spent 14 years at Fidelity. She thrived in multiple financial roles across the organization with responsibilities that included rebuilding the financial architecture platform for both the workplace and retail organizations and enabling each to view multidimensional economic analytics. Megan earned a bachelor’s degree in accounting from Villanova University and an MBA from Boston College.


Can you tell us the “backstory” about what brought you to the Banking/Finance field?

I knew I liked numbers and wanted to work in an office environment, but I wasn’t sure how to apply them in that type of setting. So, my father suggested I explore accounting — and I loved it. After attending Villanova University, I moved to Boston for a job as a staff accountant and that’s when it all started to click. I loved how my role in finance provided me with a holistic view of what was happening across an entire organization — enabling me to connect the dots to help it win. That’s why I love finance today — it’s incredibly fun and rewarding to know that my team and I can translate numbers into relevant information and actionable items for the company.

Can you share with our readers the most interesting or amusing story that occurred to you in your career so far? Can you share the lesson or take away you took out of that story?

When I was 8 months pregnant with my 3rd child, it was also time for me to begin exploring the next step within my career. I was working at Fidelity, an organization that would carve a path for me for 14+ years. So, I started having conversations and sat down with the CFO of the business unit I was in, to discuss a new organization being formed within the company. He began describing the different roles that needed to be filled and I was immediately hooked. I asked who I’d be reporting to, but the words that followed shocked me. He said, “These people will be reporting to you.” Naturally, I pointed to my pregnant belly and said, “But you see this, right?” — which he then responded with “It’s kind of hard to miss!”

This was a gamechanger for me. It completely shifted my mindset because it reminded me that sometimes women — including myself — subconsciously hold themselves back despite their capabilities. I never once thought that he would consider me for that role since I was about to give birth. Luckily, he did, and that role ultimately led me to my current position as head of finance here at eMoney.

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

My team has been spending a lot of time building our back-office capabilities to keep pace with what we want to do in the market. And that means getting creative in how we’re delivering our products and services at scale. At eMoney, everything we do is driven by our mission to help people talk about money, and my team’s contributions towards that is extremely gratifying.

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

We’re motivated by the overall success of our organization — not our individual functions. For example, due to expanding business demand, sometimes the need to form a new team arises, so we work together to provide them a space in which they can succeed regardless of where they appear on the organizational chart. Because we’re collectively focused on helping eMoney succeed, we’ve been able to remain agile during times of rapid growth.

This mentality begins at the top with our CEO, Ed O’Brien — the same person who pied me in the face at our company picnic last year. He consistently leads us as a team not a group of individuals. Not only is Ed our biggest supporter, but he also embraces our core values of innovation, collaboration, passion, integrity and fun. That’s why I love eMoney’s culture. We are not afraid to be ourselves and have fun or celebrate the uniqueness of others. We’re a team that supports one another and embraces our shared success. And we’re committed to making eMoney a place where we all can learn, grow and succeed together.

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 grew up during a time when women weren’t always expected to work. Fast forward to today and it’s apparent that an amazing force of women are demonstrating their capabilities and proving their value on their own terms. We’ve also been experiencing an influx of new thinking and awareness around unconscious biases. People are becoming more open-minded and embracing different perspectives in the workforce — especially from women, as they bring a different perspective based on a different set of life experiences. I think those same perspectives have deepened organizations insights and helped prepare them to face unique challenges that arise.

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 the below parties to support this movement going forward? (Individuals, companies, society)

Individuals: Women should remain true to their distinctive strengths and refuse to sacrifice these sources of strength and knowledge merely because they’re different.

Companies: Thanks to the introduction and adoption of flexible work, productivity is no longer tied to being in an office. Productivity means being able to perform your job no matter your location. Since many women often take time for maternity leave, companies should support flex work options to help women and parents accelerate their careers.

Society: Be open-minded. Get rid of labels and stop assuming what people are capable of based solely on what you can identify at surface-level. You’ll be pleasantly surprised.

You are a “finance insider,” if you had to advise your adult child about 5 non-intuitive things one should do to become more financially literate, what would you say? Can you please give a story or example for each?

1. Think of your personal life as a small business: The reality is that it is! Your bank account is your P&L. Are you over spending, would you know if you were? To better understand and make this more real, track your cash daily. And live off it. Literally cash — no credit. This exercise will drive home the realities of debt and credit and how to more wisely make the decision to leverage credit where needed and not outlive your means. This will help determine a true monthly budget and keep you in tune (and honest) with how to financially manage your life and achieve your financial goals (as well as financial peace of mind!).

2. Understand and digest your pay checks. Doing this will help you become more aware of where your money goes e.g. taxes, medical costs, etc.and understand the value of a dollar.

3. Take an accounting class/business class. You don’t need to major in accounting or business to take a course on these topics. The knowledge you’ll gain will benefit you throughout your personal and professional life.

4. Overcome the fear of talking about money. Talking about money is always going to be emotional, but you cannot be afraid to study the numbers in your life and understand what the possible outcomes may be. Ignoring this aspect of your life is dangerous and you have to force yourself into an area where you are not comfortable and learn to understand.

5. Immerse yourself in financial literacy. Whether it be by attending a financial literacy seminar, reading a book about investments or talking to friends and family about their experiences — these are just a few ways people can help demystify the confusion about money.

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’ve had the benefit of being raised by parents who instilled a strong work ethic in me, working for great people during my career who taught me many things along the way, and had adult mentors who helped influence my outlook on life — all of which have led me to where I am today.

I recall when I graduated from Villanova and was beginning by professional career, my father, who was a former pro football player and commercial plumber, told me to always be prepared and ready for work, regardless of where it was coming from. He would say “never sit back in your chair when in a meeting and do not stand slouched over with your hands in your pockets, always be ready to take on the work and be respectful of your team and your leaders.

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

My father always reminded me to live life in such a way that you won’t find yourself looking back and saying “I should’ve, could’ve, would’ve done…” Instead, he told me to always give it a shot and don’t be afraid of a challenge because you never know what might happen. Because of this, it’s rare for me to back down from a challenge or not pursue an opportunity that might be out of my comfort zone.

Growing up, our close family friend Kitty always referred to the quote “Truth Always” in many teachable moments. That same principle holds true for me at work every day. No matter what challenge my team and I are facing, we’re always honest and transparent with each other. We’ll be stronger and better off for it in the end.

If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the greatest amount of people, what would that be?

At eMoney, we have a very aspirational vision, and that is to provide financial peace of mind for all. The more people we can reach with our technology, the more knowledge we can impart on the financial lives of millions. And knowledge is power that can help fuel the preparedness for people’s financial futures.

Thank you for all of 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.

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