Seven years ago, Denislav’s journey at Strypes started with an interview with the founder Koen van Wijk and Todor Marinov who is now the current CEO. This interview impressed him and he still remembers it. Denislav shares that what made him join Strypes was that he was asked about his personality a lot. “They asked me where I saw myself in 10 years and I told them that I wanted to build a family and also build a house.” Even today, Denislav still holds that dream and plans to achieve it, looking for the perfect place. “For me, building a house is an intimate experience, especially when I want to do it myself.”
Prior to Strypes, Denislav has had a few other jobs and has even tried chasing the American dream by joining a Work and Travel programme, three times. However, he chose Bulgaria and Strypes and now shares that he feels happy.
The freedom that Strypes gives him, is what makes him loyal now. He believes in the company’s vision and sees it going in the right direction, even in stressful times. “I still want to develop my skills and undertake a Masters degree. I also want to grow in my work in a way that doesn’t hurt others and that considers the common goal of the company. This is one of the lesser known principles of the scientist Pareto,” shares Denislav. “Don’t look for the best solution for yourself and your career, look for the best solution for the situation.”
Denislav believes that it’s best to work in a team of seven people or less, to enable the organisation to create sustainable structures. And if Strypes was a country, it would be under direct democracy in his view. He has also learned that having stability is key when a company like Strypes wants to innovate. He currently works with one of our biggest clients.
What skills and qualities are important to succeed in your role? How have you grown in it?
The skills and qualities required for my current role are diverse and not limited only to the role itself. I believe that everyone who has the ambition to lead a team should learn a lot about people and customer behaviour, management, time management, planning, quality assurance, business and strategy development, leading by example and most importantly about the technology stack for the particular domain. I am really thankful to our company for investing in training and mentorship initiatives (both internal and external).
What are your hobbies?
I am learning to skydive and I have had 23-24 jumps so far. I need at least 100 jumps to master this skill. In 2014, I tried tandem skydiving but I found it to be boring, I felt like a “baggage.” It was weird. And this was when I decided that I wanted to try this alone. I feel fear every time I jump, but that’s normal. You need to feel fear, otherwise it’s too dangerous for you, and so you just need to accept the fear. By the time you leave the plane, the fear is gone. This is when you feel freedom and presence. You are absolutely present and time is relative. This is when you find that even 1 second is actually a really long time. You understand the meaning of the present moment.
Photo by Skydive Sofia
Otherwise, I enjoy my life. I enjoy cooking, socialising, and all other daily activities just as much as I enjoy skydiving. I read a lot. There are so many psychologists and philosophers who describe this state of mind. The only way to live a meaningful life is to live in the now.
How can you be present?
It’s very important for me to make a plan every day. We all have an equal amount of time and we choose how to use it. I make a plan for the next day, next few days, next week. I manage to adapt my plan accordingly. It’s a constant process. If the plan is “static,” then it becomes fixation.
Photo from personal archive
What gives you meaning in life?
I support organisations that stand behind environmental causes, human rights, and a better quality of life.
Photo from personal archive
Cover image by Skydive Sofia