‘Women in leadership need to be encouraged to be their authentic selves’
By Tony Sanchez
In our latest Women in Finance Interview, Tony Sanchez speaks to Jasmeen Deep-Bharj, Partner at BSG Solicitors.
Jasmeen has been in practice for over 15 years having been admitted in 2003 and has gained extensive solid experience in Real estate Finance, Development finance and has acted for numerous bridging loan companies and borrowers so she understands both sides of the coin.
She also has considerable experience in both residential and commercial property matters and has acted for individuals, property developers, companies and financial institutions.
Her principal strengths lie in her approach to understanding her Client’s business and commercial concerns by adopting a pragmatic approach to issues that may arise during the course of the transaction.
She is approachable and adept at maintaining the balance between protecting her Client’s interests and completing transactions at a swift pace.
She is always willing to think creatively and outside the box to find innovative solutions that meet her clients’ needs.
What brought you into financial services?
I have always enjoyed the challenging nature of the industry and how fast-paced it is.
I thrive under pressure and thoroughly enjoy problem-solving and analyzing property valuations.
The combination of real estate and finance has always peaked my academic and intellectual curiosity and has been a driver in my personal and professional development in the industry.
This passion increased my technical expertise, this along with my strong communication and interpersonal skills allow me to build lasting relationships with clients which is essential for the industry.
I understand that every client has unique needs and objectives, and I take the time to understand these needs and develop customised solutions that meet their specific requirements.
I believe that this client-focused approach has been instrumental in my bridging work, and it has enabled me to establish a strong reputation for quality and integrity in the industry.
What do you think makes a successful leader? And in particular women leaders?
A successful leader is one who learns from her mistakes and finds a solution no matter how hard the challenge is.
In an ideal world, women in leadership need to be encouraged to be their authentic selves.
What are the biggest barriers you have faced in your career in financial services?
When I was a junior lawyer I was always micromanaged and never given the support or opportunities to do more business development.
If you could tell your younger self one thing you know about business now, what would it be?
It always works out in the end and while you may not be where you want to be you have come a long way from where you used to be.
The possibilities are unlimited and the world is your oyster.
What’s your own personal mantra?
‘’Surround Yourself only with people who are going to lift you higher’’ – Oprah Winfrey
What do you think is key for finding a successful work-life balance?
The key is to proactively prioritise your mental and physical health above anything else because when you are strong you can be your best self at work or at anything.
Failure to prioritise your health will ultimately lead to burn out. It is essential to consistently be mindful of this.
What’s one key leadership lesson you’ve learned along the way?
If you want to be a world class leader you need to take the driver’s seat on change and adapt accordingly to build a successful team.
Analysis can lead to paralysis in the sense that being indecisive can rob you of vital opportunities.
Einstein said if I were given an hour in which to do a problem upon which my life depended I would spend 40 minutes studying it, 15 minutes reviewing it and 5 minutes solving it.
What advice do you have for women aiming for leadership positions?
Have a clear purpose, be decisive and make timely decisions so as not to miss opportunities.
Decisiveness drives the momentum in a company or within a team. To be successful you need to embrace feedback on your leadership.
What do you think is holding women back?
There is a societal bias which still exists that a woman has to either choose a career or have a family.
She couldn’t have both. This is draconian and archaic. I believe more policies need to be implemented to promote gender equality.
Do you think there is still a glass ceiling?
Yes, things are improving but a lot more needs to be done.
What are your thoughts on the Women in Finance Charter?
This needs to be more than just a tick box exercise.
How do we encourage more women into financial services?
By actively pursuing female talent, offering them transparent career paths, and upholding genuine gender inclusive objectives.
The gender pay gap is only second worst to the construction industry. What can organisations do to address this?
Organisations need to be transparent. Companies need to review their reward structures.
What is your biggest achievement to date?
My greatest achievement is successfully balancing my career as a full time Partner at a busy and thriving law firm and finding time to spend with my husband and two children.
I am also multilingual in English, Hindi, Punjabi and Urdu. I role-model reliability and have gained and maintained my client following over many years because of this.