Skopje-centered business developer and undertaking manager Olga Rajcic hardly ever intended to develop into a aspect of the tech field. For most of her vocation, Rajcic concentrated on building her family company, as very well as working on a number of social entrepreneurship initiatives.
On the other hand, all of this adjusted in 2018, when she achieved her fellow co-founders of Challenger – a cell application that motivates its people to wander, operate or bicycle more, and get rewarded for it by obtaining price reduction codes for goods and services in neighborhood businesses.
These days, Challenger has several thousand buyers in North Macedonia who have traveled far more than just one million kilometers and close to 6,000t/m3 of carbon dioxide have been saved utilizing the app.
In an job interview with The Recursive, Rajcic talks about her entrepreneurial journey, motives and inspiration for performing what she does now, the long run of Climate Tech, and a lot more.
The Recursive: How did you appear up to your present posture as a founder of Challenger?
Olga Rajcic: I had never experienced a distinct intention to have a career in the tech business, instead I often wished to acquire or increase a business enterprise. After ending my learn reports, I commenced performing in my loved ones small business, but I was always hunting for a new career obstacle and personalized expansion. The hunger for understanding, new impactful projects and new experiences is what led me to go to Startup Weekend Skopje 2018.
At this occasion I met Stefan and Teodora (Challenger’s co-founders). This weekend has improved my job completely and took me to my entrepreneurial journey. My previous expert and volunteer expertise shaped the natural way my situation in my workforce (accountable for company dev, advertising and marketing and neighborhood administration).
If I seem again at Olga in 2018 and the individual I have become these days, I would say I am grateful now for the reason that I have entered into a absolutely new industry and learned so lots of new competencies and enterprise serious-daily life lessons. Far more are about to arrive, and I can not wait around to see where all of this will direct me.
When it will come to Weather Tech, how would you fee the probable that the Western Balkans have when it arrives to implementing this kind of alternatives, applications and so on?
Each individual year we are witnessing new revolutionary apps and tech answers about the area that are tackling local weather change and security of the environment. We are faced with numerous current market gaps, due to negative implementation of guidelines, which leaves house for resourceful minds and business people to solve these troubles by employing technological know-how.
I am self-assured that the Western Balkans have amazing young business people, especially in the area of local climate tech, on the other hand we require support to get our alternatives to a lot more formulated marketplaces and increase our effects. We unquestionably have to have house for recognition and sharing our classes, achievements times and failures in purchase to learn from each other, and associate for higher impression. Only by sharing our stories can we even more encourage other men and women to be component of local weather tech, and influence them that imaginative and significant items can also be constructed in this area.
I am proud of my group, since we by no means gave up, specifically in those people times when people and our probable shoppers could not see the gain of our product or service and were being skeptical because they had been fearful to carry out a thing new. Following COVID-19 and several pivoting, I can eventually say that we uncovered our marketplace-healthy. We say that it works and if somebody buys our item right here on the Balkans, envision what we can do with it internationally.
What do you see as the main worries in the discipline of Local weather Tech proper now?
Regretably, local weather tech goods are however not perceived as a requirement in the B2B market, but rather as “nice to have” applications. This is anything we are hoping with my crew to overcome in the future months, by adding a lot more features and making our products extra pleasing to our concentrate on customers.
Furthermore, we are undoubtedly dwelling in the most difficult times in the new heritage, which will make other issues to be precedence of the agenda of every nation and firm on the other hand, weather transform and ways to tackle it is something that we will need to acquire care of no make any difference what. In the following couple of many years there may well be a slowdown in the ClimateTech business, even so I do be expecting that this field is a little something that will prosper in the many years to come.
We must not ignore that we have a Sustainable Development Aims agenda by 2030 where businesses as effectively as technological innovation have to play a important function in reaching them. This is why my crew has a eyesight to make Challenger a device that will help corporations be portion of the SDGs agenda. Unquestionably there really should be much more traders and partners in this subject in order to improve this style of startups and scale them up.
What have been the strengths and disadvantages of currently being a girl in the startup ecosystem in the Western Balkans from your expertise so significantly?
I do not consider that there are pros nor drawbacks of getting a lady in the startup ecosystem in the Western Balkans. Startups in the Western Balkans undoubtedly need easier accessibility to bigger market chances and investments for faster development.
If I can compare the startup progress from 2019 up until currently, I am grateful that we have more chances now, nevertheless we want community buyers to aid us in get to elevate larger resources in other ecosystems.
What does a day in your daily life search like? Inform us a thing we do not know about the field you are functioning in.
- Waking up at 6AM and planning for function in my family business.
- 7-8h Arriving at operate and examining all emails, tasks and organizing my day
- 8-10h Coordination of all open jobs with my group and responding to emails
- 10-14h Conferences with partners and customers
- 14-15 Product sales technique
- 16-17h Observe-up with my group for what is predicted in the next times
- 18h – Expending time with spouse and children and friends
Two moments a 7 days I volunteer my time and expertise in several NGOs in order to generate impression in regions in which I am not professionally concerned on a day-to-day basis. I use Sunday for mental wellness and soothing (placing my target on the impending operating week).
What did you want to be increasing up and how has this vision altered about the yrs?
Through my superior college yrs, I have volunteered and taken component in several impactful tasks. Via this experience I have understood that it is my call to make an effects in the modern society I stay in, but it was a problem of how I will proceed to do that.
These had been the times when my mom and dad taught me that by currently being a accountable leader and setting up a small business that usually takes care of its community, 1 can have the greatest opportunity to make impact in each and every culture.
For that reason, I often had an aspiration to link impression earning with acquiring a organization, and it appears that this paved my way of where I am currently. Probably I will try out different enterprise versions for the duration of my career, but for one particular I am absolutely sure – that my businesses will build an impact in their local communities, or even broader.
What is your definition of good results?
I have generally attempted to determine success, and recognized that is a subjective subject and you cannot place it in 1 sentence. My journey showed me that achievements is a journey, and not a remaining place. Thus, I would fairly like to place various aspects that I make the puzzle of success, all those staying:
- Regard and appreciation for your get the job done from the people you are surrounded with – encompass on your own with people today that will mention your identify in a home whole of options
- Make an impact (this can be in various forms) in your group
- Offer and overcome all your fears in order to grow to be the finest variation of on your own
- Create a business (item/solutions) that will change other people’s existence and encourage some others
- Be curious. Never ever prevent finding out and choose all options alongside the way
- By no means give up, and understand from each and every miscalculation
- Know how to rest but not give up (health and mental very well-getting is a priority)
- Be grateful for just about every move alongside your journey
How has technologies shaped your vocation so far?
Engineering is shaping our life not only our professions in the most unexpected ways. It is apparent that we will need to continue to keep tempo with technological adjustments and master new capabilities in buy to remain relevant and competitive in the workforce current market.
As stated formerly, I hardly ever imagined to be concerned in the tech market, but it would seem that Challenger has improved my vocation, as a result my daily life route. A single point is for positive that we can all use engineering for superior in order to generate effects, and I am happy that I am portion of such an entrepreneurial journey.
No subject what we execute with our startup, the tech field is now in my specialist DNA and I can not hold out what the upcoming will carry.
What are your expert goals for this calendar year?
I am grateful that several of my expert objectives are already accomplished this 12 months, but there are several still left those getting:
- Prosperous partnerships in the six nations around the world as Challenger is increasing in Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Bulgaria, Albania, and Armenia.
- Efficiently complete this calendar year with new purchasers, satisfied buyers and new capabilities.
- Getting ready Challenger for our upcoming major financial investment and new marketplaces in 2023.
- Sharing my awareness by mentorship and consulting with other youthful entrepreneurs.
- Get surrounded by men and women who will inspire me and press me even further to new qualified endeavors.