Reekiran Kahlon manages the derivatives engineering team that implements and supports the core trading systems for the six Nasdaq US options market, as well as a reports team that provides reporting for all US equity and derivative US market systems. These teams consists of highly talented, self-driving individuals that have been at the forefront driving major changes in the technologies of US market systems. We sat down with Reekiran to learn more about her career in finance and technology, and how she is using her innovative ideas to rewrite tomorrow for women in the industry.
1. How has technology influenced your role at Nasdaq?
I started my career in financial markets when the US Options markets were at beginning of their automation trajectory. This gave me opportunity to participate in one of the most significant growth period of financial markets and technology advancements. Working with highly driven talented team that strive to be on the leading edge of technology has shaped my role at Nasdaq, and helped me to pursue unique opportunities in my career with the US options market. Today, the US options market is one of the most performant, complex systems in the world of finance. Having the opportunity to participate and directly contribute to this evolution has been incredible, and I am proud to have worked directly on this initiative.
2. Throughout your career, what challenges have you been presented with that you’ve had to overcome?
The biggest challenge everyone faces is balancing work commitments and family life. Thankfully, my supportive spouse in addition to supportive leaders and managers have helped me overcome this challenge, however it is something I am consistently working on throughout my career. It is essential to maintain a work-life balance in order to grow both personally and professionally.
3. How has being a woman in the financial and technology industry impacted your career?
I have always considered being not just a woman, but an Indian woman as a badge of honor. It has given me strength to give my best. I have been fortunate to have family, coworkers and bosses who have always provided me support in critical junctures of my career so that I can be the best without regard to background or gender. As my career has grown and my role has evolved, I have applied the same lessons when leading my own team.
Nasdaq CEO, Adena Friedman, has said in a recent Forbes interview that “Gender does not define my potential.” I strongly believe in and support this statement, and apply it to all facets of my career.
4. What advice would you give to young women who aspire to be in the financial and technology industry?
Be curious and be bold. Always strive to learn. Learn to express your view in a clear and concise manner. These values will always support you, and success will follow.