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Get to Know Stanimir Markov, CEO of Runecast

Get to Know Stanimir Markov, CEO of Runecast

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Stanimir Markov, CEO of Runecast

What would you describe as your most memorable achievement?

The first time we launched Runecast on the market and the wave of positive reactions and pure excitement we received was simply unforgettable. No matter how brilliant you think the idea is, the true validation of your solution comes once you start getting these first customers.

What first made you think of a career in technology?

I have been fascinated with technology for as long as I can remember, with software in particular. So I don’t even recall taking a decision to start a career there, it just happened naturally. My father was an engineer and inventor and my mother was a mathematics and computer science teacher. So I guess this apple didn’t fall too far from the tree.

What style of management philosophy do you employ with your current position?

I run welcome calls with anyone joining the company. And there is one thing I tell every newcomer: ‘you have an advantage over everyone else who’s been in Runecast for some time. You come with a fresh view on things. Use this advantage and know that nothing is written in stone. If you see things that can be done better or opportunities to create value, speak out. From the very inception of Runecast, we have been continuously growing and evolving. And you are an important part of that.’

It is important to listen to the people you lead. At the same time, no matter how senior the hire is, it is always necessary to continue to provide guidance and feedback to them, to help them be successful contributing to the goals and direction of the organisation.

What do you think has emerged as the technology trend of 2022 and why?

Cloud-Native Application Protection Platforms (CNAPPs) are still emerging, in large part due to the industry needing to consolidate their various security tools into a single integrated platform for heightened security, efficiency and reduced costs. During 2022 the popularity of CNAPP grew much faster than anyone expected. Considering most organisations use a mix of on-premises, cloud and container environments in production, the need for a holistic approach to security and compliance became apparent.

The need for digital sovereignty increased a lot in 2022, not only due to the geo-specific regulatory compliance increase, but also the Russia-Ukraine war and global political instability. Organisations started to evaluate whether the technologies they use can offer the level of digital sovereignty they require.

What do you currently identify as the major areas of investment in your industry?

Regulatory compliance requirements continue to grow in most geographies and verticals. This increases the need and investment focus on automation. Runecast helps organisations automate their compliance among other capabilities we offer. But we clearly see a huge demand for security compliance automation capabilities in particular.

How do you deal with stress and unwind outside of the office?

Walking and breathing regularly is really the easiest, healthiest and most effective stress relief I know of. I do have guilty pleasures, like Netflix, but these are not necessarily the healthiest way to unwind.

If you could go back and change one career decision, what would it be?

I’m already doing my dream job. Throughout my career, I never stayed too long in a role where I felt that I stopped learning or enjoying. So, looking back as it often happens in life, it all seems logical and clear.

What are the region-specific challenges when implementing new technologies in Europe?

The biggest challenge in Europe is that every region is so incredibly different with their approaches to various technologies. One region-specific challenge that stands out is complying with the mix of local and European regulatory compliance standards. I am happy we are so well positioned to help our customers automate their compliance, no matter which European countries they have their services in.

There are also a lot of cultural factors. Our Channel Partners are therefore essential in being able to present our solution capabilities in the language that makes the most sense for the organisations they are helping.

What changes to your job role have you seen in the last year and how do you see these developing in the next 12 months?

The biggest change was that we had always had some remote team members, but as we continued to grow during the pandemic years it tipped the scales in that direction. 2023 will see a big shakeup in the tech industry, with companies that want to bring people back to the office most likely losing people to companies that honour flexibility.

What advice would you offer somebody aspiring to obtain C-level position in your industry?

Observe and learn, be willing to listen and believe that you can do it. Find mentors to learn from in all areas, even the ones that you might think you’ve already mastered. Mentors are essential for any type of career growth. Also, always be ready to solve problems that no-one else is willing to solve.

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