Senior Leader, Strategy, Key Equipment Finance
Executive Sponsor, Key4Women
Chair, ELFA Operations and Technology Committee
Former Representative, ELFA Women’s Council
Member, Monitor Editorial Board
In her 25 years with Key Equipment Finance, Jennifer Martin has played an integral role in the most significant changes experienced by the company as it has grown from a $1 billion niche portfolio to a $13 billion diverse portfolio. With almost every new venture, Martin was given an opportunity to participate and lead, and as a result, she has benefitted from 18 role changes in 25 years, an impressive rise from her first job as an operations clerk.
VISION FOR THE FUTURE:
“I firmly believe that a wider diversity of thought leads to more opportunities to innovate and creates a better community, which, in the end, makes us a stronger industry better prepared for whatever the future will bring.”
Key provides opportunities for growth, and in Martin’s case, those included participating in the inaugural Key4Women team in 2005, where she learned to lead by “power with” rather than “power over.” She then was encouraged to pitch a women’s council in 2016 to the board of the ELFA. The ELFA Women’s Council then took root, generated growth in participation by women and now drives initiatives in boosting emerging talent and industry equality. In addition, Martin has learned to maximize the value of diverse perspectives as chair of the ELFA’s Operations and Technology Committee.
“Jen is a big picture thinker who leans into innovation and problem solving,” Amy Gross, executive vice president of government and commercial vendor finance at Key Equipment Finance, says. “She has a very open mind, a desire to learn and welcomes the opportunity to debate and solve complex industry issues.”
Challenging and uncomfortable leadership positions, especially leading Key Equipment Finance’s five-year, next-generation technology initiative, have sparked growth and propelled Martin to the next role.
“Jen is not afraid to have vulnerable conversations, encourage open dialogue and challenge the organization to continuously improve,” Gross says.
Today, Martin leads enterprise projects, sales enablement and strategic planning for Key Equipment Finance. She believes employees need a safe place to fail, which leads to professional growth and rewarding careers, so she cultivates an environment in which employees can get uncomfortable and grow into their gifts.
If she could change anything about the equipment finance industry, it would be to speed up the pace of its diversity and inclusion evolution because she believes it propels innovation at every level. While the industry’s commitment to diversity and inclusion is deep and well-intended, Martin hopes to bring about those changes more quickly.
Chief Digital Officer,
Every generation of technology promises innovation and 5G is no exception. Scott Nelson explores variations in 5G that could make equipment finance more relevant to both providers and consumers of the technology.