Q&A with Freddy, Operations Analyst at Wise
Startups and fintechs were unknown territory to me when I first joined Wise. But I quickly learned that being curious and proactive is the best way to manage an exciting, fast-paced environment like Wise. This curiosity has helped me develop my career and given me great opportunities to work with people from different cultures and backgrounds, from all over the world.
Why did you join Wise?
I joined Wise, only knowing it was a fintech company and had a great culture to develop in. It was kind of an adventure for me, because I had just moved to Tampa and realised Wise had an office here. It seemed like too good of a coincidence, so I applied, got an interview and made it through all the rounds.
Having joined Wise straight from university, the working environment was so new to me. But I fell in love straight away with how fast the pace was – there are so many different teams full of people working towards the same goal. That feeling immediately reassured me that my choice to join Wise was worth it. And I’ve since switched teams from Customer Support to Operations, and grown to love the company a little bit more every day.
How has Wise allowed you to develop in your career?
The journey from one team to the other was fun, because I learned so much. At first, I was completely new to the world of startups and fintech – I had no idea how this space operated, but I was so interested to find out. And this eagerness to learn opened up the opportunity to move into first an Operations Specialist, and then an Operations Analyst role.
Getting adjusted to how things were done in the US versus how things were done in Europe, and then working with different teams across different time zones was definitely a shock at first. But it also really helped me along the journey – Wise offers a great development path to curious people.
Why did you move from the Customer Support team to Operations?
The more I learned about Wise and our product, the more curious I became about how we actually work – how money really moves across borders, how it’s converted between currencies, and so on. That curiosity led me to the point where I now have the responsibility of managing where we want to grow, and what we want to achieve as a team.
The journey from not knowing anything about international banking, to working on making payments seamless has been a long one, and I’ve had to push through multiple challenges – but that’s what Wise is all about.
What do you do at Wise?
My job consists of multiple areas within payment operations. Me and my team essentially ensure that all payments come in and go out as fast as possible, so that we can process funds diligently and efficiently without any delays for the customer. As an Analyst, I am able to identify where we’re lacking certain resources or where we need to be more efficient to deliver a better customer experience.
What does working with freedom and autonomy look like to you?
It’s really exciting, because you’re trusted to pick what you think will be the most important problem to solve for our customers, and then expected to go and fix it. And there’s never a lack of problems to solve in international finance, which keeps my everyday work interesting.
This way of working is really motivating, because it forces you to prioritise and understand where you can make the most impact for Wise.
How has the pandemic affected your work?
The pandemic started well for me, in a sense that I was still working full time. But as it dragged on, I really felt something missing in not being at the office, together with my team. I really enjoy in-person collaboration. Working from home has definitely made it harder to unplug after working hours, which has been a common issue for people all around the world.
We had to figure out creative ways to stay productive and connected with the team. But while creativity was fun, our work never slowed down. We had to keep ourselves accountable towards reaching our OKRs, and made it a tradition to meet up weekly to track everyone’s progress. This made it easier to stay focused on our mission. I can’t wait to go back to the office maybe twice a week and see my people again.
What is the most unusual job you’ve ever had?
I once had a job that consisted of essentially being a hype-man for a car dealership in Wichita, Kansas. They were looking to target a very specific demographic – specifically the Hispanic demographic. I mean, it was work and I got paid for it. But thinking back, it was definitely a little bit odd. Kind of makes me cringe.
What is your side hustle?
This is more of a hobby than a side hustle, but I teach tennis. I used to play in college, and wouldn’t say that I’m super good. But I’m able to pass my knowledge on to others, and allow them to enjoy this beautiful sport. Doing something so different from what I do at work is refreshing – and Florida is the perfect place to spend time outdoors!