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Anna Alemani

Anna Alemani

Introduce yourself to our audience. Tell us who you are and what you are currently focused on.

My name is Anna and I am a woman, wife, mom, sister, friend, CFO and founder. I am originally from Italy but I have been living in the US for the last 20 years (!). After a successful career as a credit analyst on Wall Street, I am currently focused on bootstrapping my own company Payitfwrd. I am passionate about promoting positive change in the world.

Tell us about your favorite Ellevate Network memory or success story. Why are you a member?

My memory of Ellevate is actually one from even before Ellevate existed. I was doing my MBA at Columbia Business School and I was pregnant with my first child (not seeing a lot of other moms around me) and I attended a breakfast with Sallie Krawcheck. It was 2005 and I think Sallie was Chief Financial Officer for Citigroup at that time. I will never forget that morning (we had to be there early, like at 7am!) because I was so inspired by Sallie's confidence, her elegant posture and gentle attitude, how she spoke passionately about her job and even the fact that she had just a grapefruit for breakfast... so healthy :)

How would you define your professional mission?

I want to disrupt the way businesses fund their working capital and give every business a chance to become customer-funded.

What qualities does it take for someone to be successful in your line of work?

Persistence and patience. Creativity and ability to think outside the box. Confidence and confidence again.

What is one of your most memorable career accomplishments?

I believe my most memorable career accomplishment is that I always followed my compass. I never said things I did not believe in and I never took decisions because they were forced on me. I always stayed true to myself and never put my personal gain before my ethic. As Frank Sinatra would say: I did my way!

What are some career challenges on your radar?

Stayed motivated and confident while bootstrapping a business is hard. Particularly having always worked in a team, I find working any myself to be difficult at times. Work partners and mentors help you with their different perspective int things and also they can hold you accountable and that is what I hope to find at Ellevate.

What project have you worked on that you’re most proud of? Why?

My four kids are the project (still a work-in-progress) I am the most proud of - do I need to say more?

We’d love to hear more about your career path. What led you to where you are today?

it was a very long journey that brought me here today. I move to NYC from Italy when I was 21 to work with the United Nations in August of 2001. Needless to say, after September 11th happened, the UN did not renewed funding for my research project so I had to reinvent myself, with no friends, no working visa and no money in NYC. And I did it, eventually I got a visa, a job, an MBA, a husband, a big family and a career. But that first year in NYC, looking to reinvent my life alone in a new country, had a big impact on who I am today.

What is the most rewarding part of your job?

Promoting positive social and economic change. Being a leader while feeling part of a larger community.

What legacy do you hope to leave through your work?

I hope to show that there are ways to improve capitalism.

What would you say your personal superpower is?

I rarely give up (also a fault, because I tend to get obsessed about things i am interested in)

What does success look like to you?

Achieving whatever goal I established for myself (goals are always changing).

What is one piece of advice you’d offer working moms?

Don't follow advice - follow your compass - do it your way.

Have more questions? Follow up with the expert herself.

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