As we speak we current Olga Camargo as a part of The Startup Journal’s Feminine Founder Interview collection. Olga has an excellent story as CEO and Founder of SHENIX, a Chicago-based fintech app firm targeted on monetary schooling and advisory providers for Latinas.
SHENIX helps shut the wealth hole to speed up Latinas financial and social transformation via culturally appropriate monetary schooling, professionally certified Latino/x advisors and profession coaches that talk English and Spanish.
Olga is completely positioned to supply monetary recommendation with over 20 years of expertise within the monetary providers trade. She launched her monetary follow, FARO Associates LLC (Latina/woman-owned/Minority Enterprise Enterprise), and new fintech venture, SHENIX, on her culturally-relevant monetary providers analysis and group wants.
Olga’s many accomplishments embody:
- 2021 Chair for FORBES Enterprise Council’s Monetary Companies Trade Group
- Negocios Now named Olga amongst Chicago’s Most Influential 50 Latinos
- Crain’s Chicago Enterprise named Olga amongst “Chicago’s Most Highly effective Latinos” in 2019
- Aspen Concepts Competition Ricardo Salinas Scholar
- Chicago’s 1871 Chicago’s Expertise and IHCC’s LatinX Incubator Choice
- Range MBA Journal High 100 Below 50 Government Chief and High 100 Girls of Affect
- College of Illinois at Chicago’s Faculty of Enterprise Administration Alumni Management Academy Inductee
- Chicago Council on World Affairs 2010 Rising Leaders Program Choice
- Commissioner on the Board of the Public Constructing Fee Chaired by Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot
- Nationwide Board Chair for the Hispanic Alliance for Profession Enhancement (100k members).
- Olga serves on the IL State Treasurer’s Hispanic Advisory Council
- IL Latino Legislative Caucus Basis Financial Improvement Committee
- Northeastern Illinois College Basis Board
Let’s be taught extra of Olga’s story from our interview…
TSM: Describe your latest venture, SHENIX, in 10 phrases or much less:
Olga: SHENIX accelerates Latinas’ financial and social transformation.
TSM: With a bit extra element, inform us extra about your small business and your app and why is it necessary to deal with Latinas?
Olga: Our mission is to handle Latina Equal Pay Day and help Latinas in closing the wealth hole, the widest confronted by any group within the U.S.
SHENIX™ is an progressive monetary firm constructed by Latinas/x, for Latinas/x, offering culturally related monetary schooling to the Latina/x group to assist them speed up their financial and social transformation whereas prioritizing their cultural mindset.
SHENIX™ affords monetary schooling, monetary providers via its companions, profession planning, and wage negotiation assets, all of which help Latinas/x life targets.
TSM: What parts of your background impressed you to deal with monetary schooling for Latinas?
Olga: I want to reply this query by describing three private eventualities:
1. Expertise Working with Mother at Bridal Store
Whereas I used to be in highschool, I labored part-time, aspect by aspect, with my mom at that bridal store. She taught me a lot about enterprise, together with the best way to assist our clients choose robes and equipment that symbolized their eagerness for a brand new life, a brand new joyful starting.
I witnessed my mom’s enterprise acumen— the best way she offered customer support, supplied great robes, and ensured her clients to know that they, certainly, would have that promised new starting. Throughout this time, totally different distributors would go to the store to pitch their services or products. At some point, a monetary consultant approached my mother with a service pitch. He solely spoke English, and my mom solely spoke Spanish. So, I stepped in as a short lived translator.
Instantly, the marketing consultant stopped chatting with my mom, a long-time enterprise proprietor who dealt with clients for years. As a substitute, he solely pitched his product to me, a 14-year-old highschool pupil. It was as if my mom had vanished from the room.
She didn’t vanish, and neither did that scene from my thoughts. I simply saved pondering: This isn’t proper. Sadly, this case wasn’t an anomaly. My mom and different homeowners like her had an extended checklist of comparable experiences, the place they had been discounted or ignored just because they had been Spanish-speaking Latinas.
Whereas Latinas are sometimes the first monetary decision-makers of their households, they typically lack the mandatory instruments and assets wanted to empower them to make the perfect monetary selections for his or her properties, communities, and companies.
2. My very own expertise
Struggling the pay hole inside the company setting, I wanted steering on wage negotiation and profession development, particularly after I realized that I used to be making lower than the folks I used to be supervising. I knew this was not distinctive to me and was occurring to different Latinas per conversations.
3. Expertise Working as Monetary Advisor for Over a Decade
After I joined the monetary trade as a monetary advisor and started working with Latino-run and serving nonprofits and helped handle their 401K and 403b Retirement plans, I additionally introduced 401K schooling periods. These had been primarily attended by Latina workers. I realized a lot about their ongoing monetary wants past retirement. We’ve impacted 3,000 lives via our work, offered digital monetary schooling, advocated for our group inside the monetary trade, and helped to steer monetary seminars at nationwide Latino conferences.
TSM: Throughout the Pandemic, most individuals’s jobs and monetary conditions have been impacted indirectly. How has the Pandemic modified the best way one ought to method their funds?
Olga: I all the time inform folks to be proactive!
Having skilled the pandemic, listed here are some useful ideas to remember when overseeing your funds:
- Constructing emergency financial savings to cowl six months of month-to-month bills is a should.
- Getting life insurance coverage for relations is essential to make sure that the household doesn’t develop into financially ruined if a key household supplier passes away.
- Doing homework. Latinas and anybody trying to leap again into the workforce must do their analysis to make sure they’re getting equal pay. Some assets assist with this.
- Budgeting your self to raised climate the sudden.
- Saving on your future.
TSM: Are you able to cite a selected success story that exemplifies how higher monetary planning impacted your shopper’s monetary situation, one which motivates you?
Olga: I’ve talked to many individuals in my life about reaping the advantages at work. I all the time take into consideration the janitor who I met at a hospital who solely spoke Spanish. He had missed out on the hospital’s retirement financial savings match for 20 years as a result of he didn’t take part within the hospital’s retirement plan. That instance motivated me to get extra concerned in sharing data with people who wanted to be extra engaged with their employer’s advantages.
TSM: What do you say to somebody that feels they’ve been dealt a foul hand in life they usually’ll by no means discover monetary safety and success?
Olga: We’ve all suffered losses. You’re not alone.
All of us must get again up, however this time search the data that we have to make general higher monetary selections. With data, you’ll really feel extra assured in regards to the selections you make, and your mindset will shift. Let’s begin with small steps and also you’ll be shifting ahead quickly with leaps and bounds. Be a part of a group that’s wanting ahead to getting forward.
TSM: On the enterprise aspect, give us a bit extra background on the SHENIX launch. What are your first main hurdles in getting your first app model launched?
Olga: As a startup, we’ve been self-funding as a result of our mission is necessary to maneuver ahead. Together with our attorneys, we’ve got been discussing the perfect and most impactful strategy to launch. Organising the entity accurately and positioning it takes time and persistence as a result of we typically have to attend for others, however it’s all value it.
On Dec. 6, nonetheless, we had been in a position to do a pre-launch from New York Metropolis’s Rockefeller Heart, due to NBCUniversal Telemundo. They understood the significance of SHENIX and sponsored us.
TSM: What have been the opposite main challenges in your personal entrepreneurial journey? Hiring? Advertising? Discovering capital?
Olga: I’d say advertising has been the primary problem, however our Latinx media champions have stepped as much as be a part of the trigger and have been serving to us get the phrase out. They’ve assisted us with articles, podcasts, interviews, and social media.
Universities and faculties are additionally within the mixture of serving to us with SHENIX and spreading the phrase as faculty college students have seen us and are actually serving to us with TikTok posts, they usually need to do extra. It’s nearly like a motion, and SHENIX is on the heart.
We might transfer ahead sooner with extra companions who’re dedicated to creating our world higher for Latinas to allow them to lastly construct their monetary legacy and anybody else who identifies with this group.
TSM: As a long-time entrepreneur your self, going again to your formative years selections, inform us what components influenced your resolution to be an entrepreneur.
Olga: I labored with my mother from center faculty to varsity. I then labored for company America (the monetary trade) but additionally knew what could possibly be accomplished higher to service girls and minority communities.
I’ve by no means been good at asking for permission to be artistic and ship impactful service when it issues.
Entrepreneurship provides me the liberty, a white canvas, to create what I do know the world wants.
TSM: With all your expertise as an entrepreneur, what’s a very powerful recommendation you’ll be able to provide different startup founders?
Olga: Two issues:
Dream Large and Deliver It to Life!
Don’t Stroll In Anybody’s Sneakers, Construct Your Personal.
TSM: Inform us one thing about your self that most individuals don’t know.
Olga: I’m on this earth to serve others and assist folks dwell joyful lives.
That’s improbable, Olga. You’ve had an inspiring journey, and we want you continued success. Thanks.
The submit Feminine Founder Interview – Olga Camargo Leads Latinas Fintech Advisory appeared first on The Startup Journal.