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Hi Kate! Tell us about yourself.

Hello! Let’s see. I grew up in Oakland, California, which I guess started my love for the outdoors, great food and wine, and good music. Basically, anything related to those four topics is how I like to spend my free time, accompanied by friends and family!

What was your background before joining Finley?

I started my career in customer success at Receipt Bank, which later rebranded to Dext. It’s a UK-based accounting technology startup. I joined back when they had about 100 people globally, and I was employee number 10 in North America. I started in an account management role but wore many different hats. As we grew, we started to parse out what a customer success role looked like, and that’s the skill set of account management that I gravitated toward most!

I always knew that I really liked the relationship side of working with customers and got the most joy out of when they had their “aha” moments, and we solved problems that they came to us to fix. I was there for about six years, helped build out the function, became a team lead, and took on managing the post-sales strategy and teams for North America. My time at Dext gave me a lot of experience working in a startup environment, working with finance professionals, and how to think about scaling with a high-growth company.

Then, I moved over to Airtable, where I managed two enterprise customer success teams. That was a really great experience because Airtable was further along in its funding journey. At that point, Airtable was more of a scale-up than a startup and an entirely different product. The use cases for Airtable are endless.

I learned how to be as thoughtful and deep as possible with the use case the customer brought to us. That translates well to all customer success roles because it’s all about making sure that you clearly understand what the customer needs from the tool and how you can make it happen.

Then, I wanted to get back into the early startup game. I love the building process and wanted to use my experience to help Finley build the customer success function from scratch.

Any lessons learned that you’ve brought with you to Finley?

The importance of scalability while also maintaining a high level of customer service and ensuring a high-quality customer experience.

Different segments of customers need different things. Make sure you tailor your customer experience and product to those segments' needs. But, also make sure you’re not overly customizing. It’s a balance.

Coupled with that is that you can’t say yes to everything. If you do, then you can’t be great at anything. It’s being thoughtful about where we want to build or grow next. We have to make sure we’re not taking on so much that it’s detrimental to the high-quality standards we provide our customers today. That applies to the product side and customer services side. That’s what I learned in my previous roles and what I wanted to bring to Finley.

What’s the day-to-day like at Finley?

Different every day.

I have weekly conversations with the customer base, whether that’s talking to customers about their immediate needs or their broader strategy and where Finley fits into it all. Then, I’m talking to the product team about the features we are working on and delivering feedback about functionality and what to add to the product roadmap.

I’m also working with Finley’s leadership team about what the post-sales team processes and strategies should look like across customer success and capital markets teams. It’s a good combination of customer-facing, internal strategy and process development, product and engineering, and even working with marketing to highlight all the exciting things we’re doing.

What’s your favorite part of working with Finley customers?

The best way to sum it up is their innovation.

They’re taking a chance on us because we are a disruptor in the space. Companies that take that on and see where Finley can help make a change are innovators themselves, whether that’s through the products they provide to their customer base or within the finance team that’s looking for ways to be as streamlined as possible.

I think that lends to a lot of creativity in terms of how they think about where Finley can help them next. That’s a great partnership. Being able to work with customers like that every day makes everything really exciting. It fuels us.

That’s what I love the most about our Finley customers. They are inspiring in the way that they think about what’s possible and what’s next.

How do you stay up to date with industry trends and best practices?

Our capital markets team all come with banking backgrounds. I’m always talking to them. Besides that, I subscribe to relevant news outlets like Axios. Our internal team has a culture of sharing things they find the most helpful, and even startup podcasts and business podcasts help me with my job and outlook on what’s possible.

What do you enjoy most about working at Finley?

The team.

I was incredibly impressed by how sharp everyone was when I was interviewing. It was a huge draw. I love the combination of backgrounds people have on the finance and banking side and the SaaS and tech side and how those complement each other.

That’s what drew me in, but what’s kept me so excited is how thoughtful and collaborative everyone is in helping each other. I’m never asking a dumb question. When I need help, multiple people jump in and are willing to drop what they are doing to assist me. I think that’s a big driver of our momentum; we all want to help each other and the business succeed. The team is really wonderful in that sense.

What’s one value you try to instill in the customer success team?

Empathy. That translates to how we work with our customers and how we work cross-functionally with internal teams. We need to understand the pain points for our customers and how urgent they are. That helps us give the product team direction on enhancing and prioritizing features.

It also helps us come back to the customer to think of creative ways we can solve their pains. We always come to our customers with an open ear and an understanding that what they are feeling and experiencing is something that is causing challenges, and it’s our job to help find out where Finley can solve that for them.

Internally, it’s the same thing. We work with so many cross-functional teams; we need to understand their priorities and pain points and then empathize and prioritize.

From a cultural perspective, that’s really important for any customer success team and empathy should be at the root of any customer success manager’s skill set.

Do you have three words to describe the company culture?

Collaborative. Thoughtful. Pioneering.

We have a team that wants to help each other but also wants to be thoughtful about the impact and prioritization. You can be as collaborative as you want, but you have to take the moment to ask if what you’re prioritizing, asking for, or thinking about is the right thing. Everyone at Finley takes that moment to ensure we are working fast for the right reasons, not just working fast to be fast.

On the pioneering side, it’s amazing to watch the EPD team build out product functionality in ways that are so creative and solve what customers are asking for. That pioneering energy works in collaboration with the folks at Finley who have a banking background, and putting those two backgrounds together has been really powerful. It is amazing to see those skill sets come together.

What’s the most memorable moment you’ve had or project you’ve worked on at Finley so far?

How the lender offering has grown, what it took to build it, and now having customers who use it on a daily basis. Seeing the product come together in the way it did is a great example of what happens when you put a bunch of Finley folks in a room with a problem to solve.

When we need to make something happen, we do.

What are your hobbies or interests?

I love being outside in nature: hiking, going to the beach, and even just walking around Oakland or San Francisco. I also love live music and going to concerts or music festivals. I love spending time with friends and family. I have a four-year-old niece I love to pieces, and watching her grow up is really fun. I love spending time with her.

What are you reading/watching/listening to?

Reading: I like to read fiction. I love to jump into different worlds. I’m about to start reading a new book by Kristin Hannah, “The Women,” and I’m excited because she’s one of my favorite authors. She writes really beautiful stories centered around women that take place in historic moments. I highly recommend any of her books.

Watching: I’m currently rewatching The West Wing. I love that show, and the nostalgia, and how quick and witty the dialogue is. It’s a comfort show for me.

Listening: I love true crime podcasts and the “How I Built This” podcast. I’m always listening to those.

Want to learn more about Finley?

Finley is private credit management software that helps private credit borrowers and asset managers streamline and monitor asset-backed loans.

Our software accelerates funding transactions and minimizes risk by automating routine debt capital management tasks like borrowing base reporting, verification, and alerting. For more, check out our Product page.

Interested in learning more about what it’s like to work at Finley? Check out our careers page.

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All information presented herein is for informational purposes only, and Finley Technologies, Inc. does not assume any liability for reliance on the information provided. Before making any decisions that may affect your business, you should consult a qualified professional advisor.


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