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Meet Alex Garner: The Fast Interview

Alex Garner,  Account Executive - SME at Fast

Alex Garner

Role: Account Executive - SME (Small-Medium Enterprise)

Team: Sales

Talk about your background leading up to Fast.

I'm very early in my career. I graduated from Chico State (California State University, Chico) in May of 2019. I started as a finance major, and I was going to be a financial adviser. I already had a job offer lined up, but I had an internship here in San Francisco at Lending Club, and that was my first foray into payments and tech as a whole. I fell in love with that internship, and that just trashed my idea of being a financial adviser.

Right out of college, I got a job at Sentieo, where I sold a financial research platform to asset managers, hedge funds, and Fortune 500 companies. I did that for nine months, and I got laid off because of COVID in March.

How did that turn into an opportunity with Fast, and what made you say yes?

I was unemployed for five weeks and interviewed left and right with different companies. I couldn't find one I liked from a product perspective, and I wasn't vibing with the people that I was interviewing with. Then I got a LinkedIn notification from Peter (Grassi, Fast's Director of Talent Acquisition). He was like "Hey, Fast just raised $20 million Series A with lead investor Stripe.” I'd heard of Stripe. They're a very hot company in payments. So that initially caught my attention.

Where did you grow up, and what were you like as a child?

I was born in the Philippines. I lived there until I was seven years old and moved to San Francisco with my mom. She wanted to give me the best life possible and knew we can have that here in America. We eventually moved to Auburn, California (north of Sacramento), when I was nine years old and grew up there. 

I'm an only child, and I was an introvert, which is not me anymore. I'm the exact opposite. I’m not afraid to go after what I want and I know that the secret to achieving happiness is to live it. 

What public figure do you admire most and why?

Lindsey Harrod. She's in the health and wellness space. Once I came across her on Instagram, I started following her religiously and I just fell in love with how she empowers you. She's building this community of strong women that workout to take care of themselves, and she's trying to change the narrative by saying there's no one kind of bikini body. Everyone has a bikini body, your body does so much for you, and you should treat it like a temple. I think she’s impacted my life a lot because I didn’t have the best relationship with my body growing up.

What app on your phone do you use the most?

I'm on Instagram way too much. I'll delete it from time to time and do a week or two-week cleanse. 

What food do you eat uncontrollably?

I eat a lot of sushi and pizza. I also eat a lot of sugar, like chocolate. Every time I go to the grocery store, I buy Hershey's almond bars because I can't have a meal and not eat a piece of chocolate. I feel like if I don't have a piece of chocolate, I'm still hungry or my meal isn't completed.

What was the last thing you binge-watched?

The last show I binged was “Designated Survivor” on Netflix.

What personal goal would you like to achieve in the next five years?

It’s to continue to be kind to myself and build a stronger relationship with myself because when I give love to myself and I'm there for me, I know that I can give more back to other people. Save more, invest more. And I also would like to live overseas for a year. I’ve always wanted to live in London for some time.