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Pavel: Hello, Russell! Great to see you! It is nice that you found time for this interview and the first question is (may be a common question) how do you see Ukrainian IT marketing like now, how is it growing, how you see it changes, how is it different from you know other markets?
I’m sure you did some research.
Well, I think that in a present environment university encode graduates are being thought by several companies medium sized and small to start right away on various kind of development technology projects and my dues that the Ukraine IT industry and it providing very well train academy and it is a quickly stopping the soft development projects, perfect as developers or as testers and as typical Ukrainian IT worker developers more and more technical skills and communication skills, with the multilingual abilities being indeed very able to pretty repeatedly moving to precious technical roles in English speaking countries.
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So, at the moment Ukraine IT industry has some establish companies some a rolling stage a medium sized companies and various some consolidation or ready going on some of the small companies are likely to become medium sized merger and remain independent for five or ten years some of the other smaller companies are likely to be merged into some of the bigger companies and that is the healthy process it is a normal expected process.
How do you think for let is owner of company around fifty or may be like one hundred people what is advantage for him to be consolidated with like bigger company I mean like from owner and independent person like you can do what every want from other sides I think there is like any more possibilities and like some you can leverage cost and so on like what do your thoughts?
Well, it is a big strategic question for independent company owners. One positive and normally for small company which is living from customer to customer and is challenge to be payroll and is not well funded is much creative security another attention benefit of joining a medium size form is a company culture where will sport development a view of the company founder into a general management role and also it support in development a view employees and provide more medium and more tern security. The company that required you has control so they have management control and you have a boss. You go from being an entrepreneur who is doing what every want more less but did not constraint of having and make money and survive and make payroll you go from net role to working for smb else. Not a lot entrepreneurs are comfortable happy for feeling when you working for smb else. Some people must feel like there they are bossed but the people are very comfortable feeling into another organization and can work for smb else with not difficulties.
So I think every entrepreneur has to ask themselves some fundament questions about those thoughts and matters before they engage may be in a serious negotiation about being required and have to do some deep inspection of yourself of who you are as an entrepreneur and a company founder to decide what you want to be in five years and ten years. Some entrepreneurs after they sell the company may be can be assured of a year to of continual management role but not much longer they had. On the other hand other company founders who have being required by much larger companies become a SEO of a larger company. When they go on a senior executive larger company for five years or ten years or as result of becoming a part of a company with better process, better structure, larger customer base. Their business unit grows larger and faster and they become a bigger business unit of a bigger company.
So, other scenarios played out it is hard to say in any particular case of a opposition offer what is like did happen to an entrepreneur? How their business you know will be tired. These always are some risks in every situations! I am speaking of course very candidly.
Ok, Russell, thanks! And back to question about perspective or opportunities of Ukraine IT marketing. A lot of people ask me to ask you what do you think about competition from Asia, India and China IT suppliers. How do you see like how North America see East Europe and India and China. I know India’s IT community is bigger than all Ukrainian populations.How do you see in the next five years. Is it will be stronger Asian in marketing or like East Europe has bigger potential? How do you think?
It is pretty clear for this life. Eastern Europe and Ukraine and Belarus are better growing and faster! Substantially faster in a market. The grate education system here process is right sized and in many cases very good focus on using latest schools, using latest practices , using latest methodologies and so are experienced in my experience is the more delivery that we make to a customer base in North America? The more variable to compare the quality of a worker effort and a commitment of a people and teams to what they met experience from provides another parts the world with the culture frankly is different and the approach to the workers different. So in my unself interest, but I think that the taking of share away from India and China part but not the Eastern Europe of sure industry is just can not study may be realistically in the last three or four years it’s started to gain some momentum I think and it’s continually at this moment and I see it as a medium term trend may be a long term trend.
The next question is like imagine that you have own like for example you don’t have any experience working in your state before yet but you own the company from 5 to may be 1 hundred people and like you may be develop applications, mobile applications or dot.net applications anyone open for yourself like North American market. And like now you stand in Ukraine or Belarus or Russia like may be what like free may be five steps what do you recommend you to do. May be like open office is probably big step but may be how do you find customers in North America if you owner of five to one hundred people company.
Well, for sure you need to find some employees people you could trust in North America to help you hunt for your customers. So you have ideally looking for people who will be success in hunting and use social networks for a marketing process. I think in addition if I was this entrepreneur company owner I would want to have significant period of time with customers and with potential hunters and employees in North America. It’s worth the time to invest in being you as for significant period of time can a very familiar with the people that you doing business with not just in terms of your technical deliveries but with priorities in my families create relationships.
Relationships are for most people in business is a key of business. And so you need to develop and think in very medium an long term to develop relationship with the key employees cause relationship are develop deep close relationships with my key customers and so I think that it is really the first step and one of the most serious steps. I also think that you need to think very carefully about work climate of software company you want to be. Other abstract concepts coming along for enterprise market there are purely consumer focused. You may take a purely development services approach in build systems for your customers and you may only build looking for other software companies or other technology in able the enterprises. You have fully complex systems projects may be that is your strategy. May be you focused on implementation of coming platforms in applications that we see a lot of in United States SAS-based CRM for example and extension of SAS base CRM what we be forces still force play or your implementation and customization or you want to focus on contentment market or you want to focus on big data platforms and business intelligence and analytics. So, those the two latest that I would recommend are to think about building the relationships with key employees for the US, building deep relationships with the initial customers that the North American based and the second one is to think very carefully about a focus you know what is the focus of your business and then have that focus, because lots of opportunities will come along which may be pretty far from what you decide, what you strategy, you focus and you may very well have the technical ability that chase the opportunities, but chasing the opportunities can also be a distraction and so there is the kind of really important decisions that your question brains up on my mind.
Thanks. Also there was question for example it choose some like we says sales person who represent you in your say and you say that you should follow these records what he did before he did but success but may be can you say like may be five metrics would you recommend to choose like to you know to follow or to check may be like he some personal skills may be like recommendation what would you do if you had to do its. Five metrics that possible?
Well, I would recommend not five metrics so be pretty direct again. That is mathematical approach to what is human challenge and not necessarily you right approach. So there are of course some metrics that you look for in an employee that you believe has some skills that my be worth you consumer hiring them obviously industry experience, industry experience in the market segment that you focus in your the business on. So you know to use that example from the product question if you decision is to focus some BAM big data then a person who is experience with platform like cognos or person who has reason experience working with platform like cupid some level or person who has experience for date warehousing will player names info by you know different player names make sense for you as a metric. But I would not be to full metrics focus you know there is a simple metric as well to use for experience sales people that you may be looking for this how long making a living sales successfully industry of then being doing for couple of years of the matter or living for tern of five years. By asking a few questions, that becoming very American culture you can generally thought the people that had some success sale for people be consistently successful from people who are find to sales because it is convenient for them to try but they have not had any success of course you looking for person with the list something indicant successful sales some experience in your target market in ideally a lot of success. You also have to study the culture of successful sales and marketing people in the US to start to make business decisions. The other thing that we do have in your assets is may be we have the notion tern of job change and you need to study that you think about this mean but again I would focus more the relationship is the person trust is the person understand vision of your company, can you work with them every day? Will the communication school that you have at hand when you not together physically. But I would focused more on the character of the person which is not necessarily measurable my metrics. Character then the persons non worker activity character for example I would never discount examine the person before making such decision what kind of person is it.
And may be like also small question how for many owners what I discuss it them like how would you pay him? May be like simple question but difficult as well. It should be like fixed price plus percentage or how they work, how would you do it?
So the most successful sales people in US are comfortable working for stray commission because there are experience in working for spray commission just only in sense of compensation is to have a chance to have most amount money and because they have a strong soft confidence that is the kind of compensation arrangement they prefer the working. This can lit you top sales person making more money than owner of the company. Some company owners that is why are very uncomfortable. Other company owners who still own only company suppose getting you know particularly cash compensation for the latest deal to when they have the top sales person making more money than anybody else in the company that is a great thing. I mean company succeeding. So you have to think about one thing… more typical for sales person that they compensate with the salary and some competitions. General management take people from the USA which you need as well as your service organization gets larger which is when I am to be candidate right typically compensated based on salary and over a performance of the entire business. So, compensation is again another subject that has some complexity in a North American market and it helps to meet some information rich some studies, talk to you candidates for a positions, candidates if you like A person has a accanady and you talk with them there are good honest person the kind of compensation they expect to that they want and negotiation process. So, give you some good data points with expect this question.
Ok, thanks. And also you told about that is good for owner to come to you say and to see personally in the initial customers I mean if you do it from skretch what would you do also like do you find some conference about you know IT technology or may be some you need and so on go there or may be it easier to find smb in Ukraine who know some in your sale. What would you do like know get the culture or get initial contents of customers?
Both views suggestions would be worth for while .I think that what can be very helpful is to select and invent in new serious invents target market ideally you comment with someone else who may be has little bit more familiar ready with smb other prospects but event sales and marketing is an industry in the US I would imagine hundreds thousands of IT industry events going on North America and giving more new period of time and so the little bit of ends working have foe entrepreneur company ownership be able to identify list to three four five events where the particular market segment at the targeting is going to have educations or vendors enterprise IT people and I think ten events central .To find customers, to get familiar for market. So that probably the simplest approach is beginning to be present .At list it immediately you don’t there is also marketing investment she could make events more typical that larger IT company with beginning to spend marketing money? To sponsor this invents as the result of sponsoring it a very common practiced in beginning an opportunity in making presentations speak Before the tender hundred person really stage IT development services company from list the world I would say being president and individual events trying to schedule prospects before the event observing the peace of the market be invent of the key plays on the market doing? Studding you opportunities by attending the invent proper practices for initiation yourself in marketing activity in a target market.
Thanks. Also imagine that you are a worker from Ukraine or Belarus and you also still find customers but for example you don’t have opportunities to go to your sales. You do not without it any other opportunities like what do you think about tenders fields you know old desk? Freelancer come more less player also still here I mean understand this mobile simple question.Is it possible to do some code from Ukraine or like trying to find customers linkedin. What do you think about it? Does it have any sense trying to find order like middle or even small company?
My probably last question what is for company national marketing. I mean what is consist of like some materials or special strategy company I know may be it simple but also difficult question. If you will be a CEO of company, what will you do with marketing? What actually marketing in outsourcing companies?
I like to think, marketing should be to all global companies but you should think of it in classic business school terms if you like it about your pricing, your packaging you promotion activities, when you positions your company and you have to go three of those p word a little bit more detail. Promotion is about generating about activities in your target market which will bring you prospects. Your salling process need to convert some number prospects to customers. Pricing is also thinking very carefully. You may have price strategy. There is more flexibility in the way your price in package development services that you might think.