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Cynthia is a Senior Consultant in the International Account located in Beirut, Lebanon. She supports financial sector clients in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) Region, with a special focus on Digital Banking and Payments—e.g., mobile payments and radio-frequency identification (RFID) chips in credit cards. Her main work focuses on developing and implementing strategies that bolster digital banking and payments capabilities for clients. Outside of work, Cynthia enjoys traveling and exploring countries, and learning about new cultures all around the world.
Digital payments are about enabling end-users to conduct their transactions and pay for them using digital mediums. These cover everything from contactless cards technology to mobile payments to the overall payment platforms of a business. The main goal of moving over to a digital payment system is based on the idea of "de-cashing" the economy. Cash is not very secure and is difficult to track. With digital payments, transactions are much more secure through modes such as online purchases, credit cards, and Nearfield communication (NFC) technology in phones and even smartwatches. While this type of technology needs a lot more time to fully implement across the world, we are working closely with our clients to educate them on the respective benefits and overall impact, and to help them implement digital payments strategies.
“Maximize the learning experiences you encounter on every project.”
- Cynthia Chami
One project that stands out to me was structuring and enabling digital payments for a regional central bank entity. We worked closely with our client and aligned with various stakeholders within the ecosystem to develop a high-level digital payments blueprint, as well as the overarching regulatory framework. This project allowed the team to focus on the bigger picture, as it was a large-scale project, pushing us to frequently take a step back to think about the different dimensions that needed to be factored into any strategy we were proposing. The project really stretched me and allowed me to grow my skills in many different areas. It really became the basis for a lot of my other work in the region.
One piece of advice I received and that I've found to be true is to always make sure you maximize the learning experiences you encounter on every project—whether that's related to the topic, the project structure, or the brainstorming sessions. Try to work closely with your senior leaders and learn from their experiences, as this will allow you to get clarity on the type of manager you will aspire to be one day. Last, but not least, treat everything with curiosity, and never be scared to ask questions.
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