Vladimir Baranov is the founding CTO of AdvisorEngine, a fintech company that was recently acquired by Franklin Templeton. Vladimir has been building successful technology solutions primarily in the fintech industry for 15 years, and he shares his experience on managing the business/tech divide.
Q: What are some of the common challenges that come up between CEOs and CTOs?
In summary, Vladimir says it’s about the relationship between two individuals. Typically, when the relationship starts, there may be friction because they’ve never had a relationship before. They may also have different myths and legends about what the other thinks. Understanding each other’s concerns is important but so is communicating them. They may have different ideas of scope and product success too. Vladimir gives several specific examples of challenges and myths and legends.
Q: What have you had to learn or change to improve your relationships with CEOs?
I am a constant reader and a complete believer in self-improvement. Understanding where the other person is coming from and understanding their biases and context is probably the most important thing you have to learn. Our natural tendency is to start analyzing anything that is said to us from our own context and sometimes that is faulty if we are not taking into consideration the context of the person who is telling us. Vladimir talks about how he communicates his knowledge vertical to others.
Q: How did getting an MBA help you better work with CEOs?
It has helped me more on the engineering side than the business side. Eighty percent of the benefit came from when I had to explain the business rationale to my reports and my partners on the technology side who did not have the business background.
Vladimir also talks about what CEOs have done to build a solid relationship with him as a CTO and he gives advice to CTOs on how to improve their relationships with their CEOs. Listen to the episode to hear more.
Words of Wisdom for Building Relationships:
Even when you have your own self-awareness, it is important to realize another person may not.
Build trust by acknowledging we may have conflict, but it doesn’t come from trying to hurt each other.
Be transparent and be open and tell each other you want to build a collaborative relationship.
Invest in training soft skills.
Contact Vladimir Baranov: