In its 16th year, American Banker will be hosting their annual “Most Powerful Women in Banking” awards dinner. Protiviti is proud to be the exclusive Diamond Level sponsor for this prestigious event. In anticipation, we are excited to spotlight inspiring women who work within the financial services industry (FSI) here at Protiviti. While these women do all have their industry expertise in common, their stories are all unique and each offers wonderful perspective. We hope you enjoy our #ProtivitiWomenInFSI series!

What does being a leader mean to you, especially being a female leader?

“To me, being a leader means being someone others can look up to, respect, and want to emulate.  Being a female leader means I’m a role model specifically to more junior females who have a lot on their mind for the future – career, family concerns, and work/like balance.”

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Barbi, a Managing Director in New York, with her husband and three sons

How have strong  leaders impacted your career thus far?

“Being able to see someone successful above you can often be the inspiration and confirmation needed that what you want is achievable, with hard work and perseverance.  I had role models when I was earlier on in my career that helped me in this way and now I’m at the point where I can pay it forward.”

How do you deal with challenges that you’ve faced in the industry?

“The financial services industry is a very demanding one.  The culture, generally speaking, is that you do whatever is needed to get the job done – which many times requires long hours to resolve complex and important business issues.  Managing all the facets of life in this environment can definitely pose challenges.  An important tool that can help you through this challenge is a good support system, both at work and at home.  Having people that can pitch in when you need help and share the burden of handling important matters can be all the difference in the world.”

What are some of the successes/goals you’ve reached?

“Building that support system around me is probably my most important achievement.  It has allowed me to progress toward my goals in the different aspects of my life and I am always conscious of that.  Another thing I’m super proud of is all the connections I have made with other female leaders in FSI.  I really enjoy these unique relationships I have built and it helps me continue to stay energized and inspired about everything I do.”

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Barbi and her mom at a Barbra Streisand concert

If you could give any career advice, what would that advice be?

“Be the best at what you do.  Find the best role model/leader in your space – someone who is super successful and influential – then make yourself their indispensable right hand.”

Do you have any specific mentors?  What have they meant to you and how have they helped you in your career?

“I have had lots of mentors over the years, one in particular that I have known my whole career.  That person was an advocate for me in every way possible – they were always approachable and available when I needed help, gave great advice, and could even talk me off the ledge the occasional time when needed.  What I didn’t realize until much later on, is that everything I did also assisted them in being successful in their career.  A great mentor over time becomes a friend for life.”

Rapid Fire

If you could only eat 1 food for the rest of your life, what would you pick? – “Ice cream.  Hands down.”

What is one of your guilty pleasures? “Watching MTV.  I’ve been doing it since I was 12 and it’s still something I can put on at any time.  You really don’t have to pay attention and you don’t miss anything.”

On behalf of Protiviti, we’re proud of all that Barbi has accomplished and we know she has many successes to come. Thank you for being a strong female leader in management and for inspiring us each day!

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