Up2 is our latest addition to Strypes’ family of companies and this week we feature the story of the General Manager, Dimitrina Chonkova, Didi.
Technical writing has given her the opportunity to grow in different software companies, coordinate small and big projects, and become Manager of the .Net team. She has always been excited to work on enterprise projects with complex logic where the user experience is paramount.
Gradually, the diverse work she has done allowed her to become the company’s General Manager.
“Up2’s has a flat structure. There is no strict hierarchy and the team works together, people choose to stay for a long time with us. It’s very rare to have someone leave us after one year.”
Didi shares that over the years, the enthusiasm to learn new skills and knowledge, and the flat structure have pushed the team forward. The Team Leads make decisions together and Didi believes that bonding outside of work is also key to having great teamwork.
Having a small team allows her to be open and to listen to people’s feedback and concerns. Being in between the clients and the teams, Didi finds a way to be a good listener and have a smooth work process.
“I believe this work is extremely creative and it depends on people’s motivation, enthusiasm, and sometimes even on what is their personal life at the moment.” This is why Didi likes to push people out of their comfort zone, with respect for their personal and professional boundaries.
Not everyone is equally communicative and Didi’s super skill is to understand and align the team by being a good listener and having people trust her.
“I read a lot about the technologies we use and I am trying to present at all technical meetings that we have. I am not a developer but I am constantly learning.”
Of course, it’s important to meet deadlines and deliver the best results, but there is also another side that involves listening to people’s issues that relate to a project. Sometimes, it takes time to understand the client’s issue and come up with solutions, while also aligning with developers. Didi likes the role of being a mediator. The first step for her is to make both sides (the client and the team) feel comfortable that they are understood and aligned.
“Everything becomes complex once you get to the details and you have to constantly discuss them with all parties involved.” Didi is passionate about building solutions that bring real results and impact–-opening cars from a distance, monitoring rail track barriers, building a software solution for the ambulance services.
What are your current challenges?
We are currently switching from being a company owned by one person to having been acquired by Strypes, and this is a big challenge for me.
What do you dream of?
At the moment, I have a dream for Up2 to become an impact-focused company. Personally, I would also like to achieve a better work-life balance for myself.
Tell us a curious fact about yourself?
I have triplets. I used to read a lot and I had a huge library, but since I have triplets who like to explore and take the books, I had to move my library and read on the phone.
What are your hobbies?
We recently moved to a house in a village and I love gardening. We’re here for the third year in a row and I didn’t expect to enjoy gardening so much. Our garden is beautiful and I feel that it’s helping me reset and relax. I also like to read Scandinavian criminal novels. I am a fan of Stieg Larsson, Jo Nesbo, Hennig Mankel, Camilla Lackberg, Karin Fossum, Anne Holt, and Arne Dahl.