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How Lead Bank’s co-founder transformed a century-old community bank into an innovative fintech company

How Lead Bank's co-founder transformed a century-old community bank into an innovative fintech company


On this episode of Fortune’s Leadership Next podcast, Michal Lev-Ram sits down with Jackie Reses, co-founder, chair, and CEO of Lead Bank. The conversation ranges from Reses’ thinking behind transforming a 100-year-old Kansas City bank into the headquarters for a fintech company, how she handled culture issues while creating an innovative business out of a traditional one, and what she took away from working with Jack Dorsey at Square. Reses also makes it clear that making herself and her team part of the community was as essential—and very enjoyable—part of the process. Leadership Next co-host Alan Murray is off this week.

Listen to the episode or read the transcript below.


Transcript

Alan Murray: Leadership Next is powered by the folks at Deloitte who like me, are exploring the changing rules of business leadership and how CEOs are navigating this change.

Michal Lev-Ram: Welcome to Leadership Next, the podcast about the changing world of business leadership. I’m Michal Lev-Ram.

Guess what? Today I am flying solo. Again, shout out to my co-host Alan Murray, who could not join me for this episode. But I’m super excited about this episode today I talk to Jackie Reses. Jackie is probably best known for her career at Square, now known as Block, where she was really instrumental from kind of the early days. But these days she is running a bank called Lead Bank. She actually bought a bank, which is pretty impressive. I don’t think many people do that. And the idea is she’s got this really extensive background both in the world of finance and fintech. So the idea with Lead Bank, which was an existing community bank in Kansas City, was to really add on this layer, this fintech layer, of banking infrastructure that can be sold to other players, to other fintech players. So we get into all of that.

I will not try to explain it right now. I think she does a much better job of explaining it. But we also talked about culture because she’s really combining these two worlds. The kind of traditional banking and this was a family owned bank for many, many years with the fintech world. And so we get into that. We talk about working with Jack Dorsey and what she learned from him and how she’s approaching this current venture really as an entrepreneur, even though it’s a bit of a mix of the old and new. So never boring talking to Jackie, and I will let you all listen to the conversation.

[Interview begins.]

So,…

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