Seven Questions with Reltio’s Anastasia Zamyshlyaeva
Welcome back to our Women in Tech blog series, where we highlight notable and accomplished women in the technology sector.
This interview is with with Anastasia Zamyshlyaeva, who won the 2018 Aragon Research Women in Technology award for CIO. Anastasia is Chief Architect at Reltio, where she’s responsible for the architecture of the Reltio Cloud modern data management Platform as a Service.
She has extensive experience in big data and enterprise software architecture. Anastasia holds a MS in Computer Science from Chelyabinsk State University where she conducted research in the area of distributed graph computing.
1. Please describe yourself in three words.
Passionate, creative, strong intuition.
2. What do you find most interesting about the technology field in which you work?
With the evolution of clouds, with huge volumes of growing information, and with IoT and ML/AI, we live in a very interesting time when data is becoming the key to all technology and business initiatives. At the same time, we see that more and more valuable information is being locked in silos.
It’s very exciting to see how the technology that we developed at Reltio can break all the barriers. It can organize all data that enterprises have in all their systems. This drives change in how companies run their business: becoming more personalized, achieving better cost efficiency, and bringing value to their customers faster.
3. How do you find work-life balance, or what do you enjoy outside of work?
With a demanding job, sometimes you need to put in effort to find work-life balance. For me this means that when I’m at work, I’m putting 100% of my energy to work. And when I’m outside of work, I try to focus only on my family, friends, or myself. This allows me to get the most of both worlds.
But sometimes work-life balance transforms into work-life prioritization. For example, with a small baby, the demands are different than when you have a 3-year old who’s attending preschool. For working moms, still, it’s worth it in the end to stay true to your career and passion, even if you have to sacrifice some things in the short-term while having a baby. Similarly, sometimes prioritization can lean more towards work if there are some critical opportunities, projects, or deliverables. The key thing is that you drive that prioritization.
4. What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced in your career and how did you overcome it?
The idea behind founding Reltio was to create a new solution that would act as the heart of enterprise ecosystems, organizing critical and sensitive information from all applications and spreading that information to all other systems. This expansive vision proved challenging to execute with technology, and I had just moved to the U.S. for the first time. Manish Sood (now Reltio CEO) and I started from scratch, even creating our own graph technology because our approach required a graph that was infinitely scalable in order to deliver data-driven applications for all business needs. With persistence and creativity, we built Reltio Cloud into the innovative modern Master Data Management solution it is today. It’s been amazing to see Reltio become the de-facto data management technology for Global 2000 companies, including 8 of the top 10 global pharmaceutical companies, two of the top 10 technology companies in the world, and others in healthcare, media & entertainment, hospitality, distribution and retail.
Support and trust from family and professional partners was very important during the time we built Reltio. We surrounded ourselves with people who encouraged us to follow the dream of Reltio, which made a huge difference. We invested in employees early on, and this is still a main focus area for the company—Reltio was even recognized by Fortune as the #1 small/medium workplace in 2017.
After managing engineering and product management teams, serving as Chief Architect at Reltio is a very exciting role, where I’m responsible for the architecture of each single element of the Reltio product. At the same time, it was the first time when I did not have any direct reports. It was an interesting journey to learn how you can influence people who are not reporting to you. And that included mastering how to:
- Generate & assess ideas and prepare logical facts to convince co-workers to take a specific approach;
- Collaborate with teams on building trust, listening, and sharing ownership;
- Drive motivation across teams by drawing a big picture with vision, and generating enthusiasm around it;
- And define standards that all teams needs to follow.
5. Are there enough opportunities for women in tech? How would you assess the progress women have made in the tech industry?
There is not enough representation of women. You can see that at IT conferences, especially those focused on IT leadership.
There could be a few reasons for this:
- Women are still working their way into IT leadership roles;
- Women are afraid to take IT jobs or grow in certain areas;
- Women make deliberate decisions to spend more time with family, and less focus on work.
For the first two areas, we need to show a lot of support, mentorship, and role models to empower women to follow their passion. And of course, for women who choose to spend more time with family and less on work, we need to respect their decisions.
6. What are some things you think should be addressed on macro, peer, and educational levels to encourage women to feel empowered in the tech industry?
Women are not outliers in IT; we can take all the same roles as men can. We should be 100% confident in this. Through mentorship programs, we need to convince and prove this to all women who may be in doubt. We need to believe in ourselves.
7. Please provide a WIT call to action.
Dream big, work hard and bring your passion!
Thank you, Anastasia!
The winners of the 2019 Aragon Research Women in Technology Awards will be presented on December 5th, 2019 at Aragon Transform. We hope to see you there!