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Women Tech Execs Spill the Secrets to Integrating Innovation

2 mins
14 October 2022, 16:30 GMT+0000
Updated by Geraint Price
14 October 2022, 16:30 GMT+0000
In Brief
  • Technology executives, including one working in crypto, told Fortune magazine’s Most Powerful Women Summit how they get others onboard with new technology.
  • Several of the women on the panel emphasized relating the technology to the company’s core mission, and empathizing with employees and customers.
  • Meanwhile, the acting Comptroller of the Currency in the U.S. said he thinks too much energy is being devoted to crypto at the expense of other fintech.
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A panel of women tech executives, including one working in crypto, have shared their methods for getting their employees, and customers, to adapt to new technology.

Emily Chiu, chief operating officer at Block Inc.’s decentralized finance business unit TBD, explained her approach at Fortune magazine’s Most Powerful Women Summit. 

She prefaced by saying that very few people grasp the work her company does, building blockchain infrastructure on an open-source developer platform, which is fundamentally understood by even fewer. This perspective, however, informs how she addresses the subject with those who are unfamiliar.

Within the realm of blockchain-based technology, like cryptocurrencies, where people are often unfamiliar with basic use cases, Chiu said employees need to be given concrete examples of the abstract principles behind the technology. 

Further ingraining the technology into company culture requires connecting its “human benefit” back to the company’s values and mission. Once employees develop this understanding, it enables them to better serve the company’s customers and in turn convince them of the technology’s merits.

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The necessity of connecting innovative technology to the company’s core purpose was affirmed by data-streaming platform Confluent’s president of field operations, Erica Schultz.

She said that it wasn’t the technology that her company’s customers struggled with necessarily, but rather having to alter processes they had previously understood well.

Najoh Tita-Reid, global chief marketing officer at Logitech, emphasized that any change, no matter how involved participating parties are, is met with a learning curve.

She also suggested taking a “human-centric approach” to smooth that curve, emphasizing that empathy helps engender acceptance most effectively.

Too Much Focus on Crypto, Says Prominent Skeptic

However, others have taken more of a skeptical approach to integrating emerging technologies. Earlier this week, Michael Hsu, the acting Comptroller of the Currency within the U.S. Department of the Treasury, said he believed that authorities have been spending too much time and effort in dealing with cryptocurrencies.

He said this has exhausted resources that could be applied to understanding and regulating other forms of fintech.


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