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  • Writer's pictureAnli Valdez

FinTech Female Fridays: Meet Klaudette Christensen, Executive Vice President & Chief Product Officer at Experian

Klaudette is the Executive Vice President and Chief Product Officer for Experian’s Consumer Information Services, where she is focused on helping clients to develop strategy, delivering innovative software solutions, and finding ways to use new technology, analytics, and data sources to drive financial inclusion. Prior to joining Experian, she started out in media buying before taking on various roles in product management, sales, marketing, and operations across multiple industries. Having a vast range of experiences allowed Klaudette to successfully navigate her career at Experian, where she has also taken on a variety of roles within the company for the past decade. The challenge of identifying solutions for clients and finding new areas of growth has kept her job at Experian exciting and rewarding.

Klaudette is proud to work at Experian particularly because of the company’s commitment to financial inclusion and giving consumers access to the fair and affordable credit they need to reach their life goals. Experian empowers people to take control of their financial health and values being a trusted resource along one’s entire financial journey. Diversity, Equity and Inclusion drive the innovation of the products, services, and tools Experian brings to consumers every day. The company celebrates diversity and has an inclusive culture where employees are encouraged to bring their whole selves to work. It has employee resource groups (ERGs) including Women in Experian, Asian American, Black Professionals, Pride, Veterans, and many more. The Women in Experian ERG specifically helps to inspire, empower, and elevate women at Experian to reach their career goals by facilitating opportunities for mentorship and growth. 

Experian works closely with leading fintechs across the entire customer lifecycle. With the fintech industry’s focus on digital innovation, Experian provides the latest in data, analytics, and advanced technology to optimize decisions, drive financial inclusion, and prevent fraud.

Experian has also long championed the use of expanded data, including consumer-permissioned data, to improve access to credit and enable lenders to make better informed decisions. 

Klaudette believes the use of consumer-permissioned data through open banking technologies will continue to be a big trend in fintech. By harnessing the power of expanded FCRA-regulated data, including consumer-permissioned data, cash flow insights, and more, fintechs have the potential to drive financial inclusion and bring more consumers into the traditional credit ecosystem. Experian Boost is an example of this use case as it allows individuals to voluntarily add positive payment history for bills like utilities and residential rent to their credit profiles, helping more than 14 million consumers to improve their credit scores. It is a testament to Experian’s dedication to leveraging open banking technology for positive and impactful change in the financial landscape.

Klaudette feels it is important to embrace change in order to grow personally and professionally. It can be unnerving to leave the familiar and to try something new, but it is often the most rewarding. It is also important to recognize where one might have gaps and to find new opportunities that can round out those skillsets. One of the best career decisions Klaudette has ever made was leaving a comfortable position to take on a new leadership role. Taking that leap into a new job allowed her to understand facets of a business she was less familiar with, making her a more well-rounded and dynamic leader today.

In addition to welcoming change, Klaudette also differentiates herself as a leader by being involved and immersing herself in her work, colleagues, and industry. She does this by investing in her team, meeting regularly with clients to identify pain points, and reading the latest news to stay close to trends. She also values networking and believes building relationships both inside and outside of one’s organization is crucial for enhancing one’s experience and providing new opportunities to learn and grow.

More on Klaudette

Where you currently live: Bozeman, MT

Living arrangement: Empty nester with my husband and 2 dogs

Favorite hobby: Travel, scuba diving, hiking, football games

Favorite show to binge: Suits

Favorite fintech media that inspires you:  Fintech Corner

What is one piece of advice someone told you that resonated with you that can give to other women in FinTech?     

I think as women, we are more prone to letting imposter syndrome stop us from taking on new opportunities. My biggest advice is to get comfortable being uncomfortable. Taking initiative and raising your hand for new projects or roles can have a profound impact on your career. By challenging yourself, you will not only grow in your career, but also gain more confidence.

What is the most important lesson you have learned from a mistake you’ve made in the past? 

Early in my career I felt like I could do everything on my own, often tackling my work alone and not asking for help. I learned quickly that working with a strong team is a pivotal key to success. A reliable team can not only help with a heavy workload, but the collaboration between colleagues spurs new, innovative ideas and solutions. 

Do you have any productivity hacks?  What keeps you motivated? How do you maintain a work/life balance? 

I know it has been said many times before, but I cannot stress how important it is to prioritize both your physical and mental health. You cannot pour from an empty cup, so ensuring you are taking care of yourself first is so critical. I also work hard to balance my work and personal life. A big productivity hack I have when I am feeling stuck is to take a walk to clear my mind and reset. 

Daily Diary

5:45 am: Alarm goes off

6:00 am: Another alarm goes off in case I didn’t get up the first time

6:45 am: Either driving to the office or jumping on my computer at my home office

7:30 am: Eat breakfast and have coffee

7:30 am - 4:00 pm: Work at computer

4:00 pm - 5:00 pm: Focus time, catch up on emails, prepare for tomorrow

5:00 pm - 6:00 pm: Exercise – I like to walk, Peloton ride, or run

6:00 pm: Eat dinner, catch-up with my husband, and laundry

10:00 pm: Lights out

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