We now have 34 people working within the Travelpayouts team, and some of them have been already been introduced to you in interviews. We want to continue this tradition, so we are pleased to introduce our business development manager Tanya Buyanova. In this interview, Tanya shares some fun facts about her career and life experience. You will find out how to become a CEO at the age of 21, what a fruit market and the affiliate marketing industry have in common, the good cops and bad cops in the Travelpayouts team and what Tanya is afraid of.
- As a child, I used to draw a lot. I dreamed of becoming an artist until someone told me that I couldn’t make my living with a brush in hand.
- At the age of 21, I started my own travel agency with the intent to bring foreigners to the Northern Caucasus for walking tours in the mountain environment. In the end, it just so happened that we were lacking in both knowledge and money to run the business, which we had to shut down three months later. There was a positive outcome, though, as my employment history still includes CEO in my past work experience.
- I hold a bachelor’s degree in Spanish.
My role at Travelpayouts
- I’ve been working as a business development manager at Travelpayouts for nearly a year. My responsibility is to set up more partnerships in order to increase company revenues.
- My grandma gave up trying to understand what I do for work a long time ago. As for my friends, I came up with a metaphor using a fruit market to explain the rationale behind affiliate marketing and a business network. A business network is like a fruit market – vendors sell apples to customers and these customers buy the apples for different purposes. For instance, they make cider or apple pie. Our affiliates sell apples (traffic), while our advertisers buy this traffic for their businesses. Therefore, our business network a marketplace where they can meet up.
- My first day at work was in Thailand where people normally vacation. There were two of us, and we were waiting for the third one to meet the company. We were all excited to get to work and were asking questions before our first assignments were given to us.
- I prefer to work at the office instead of from home because I need to be surrounded by colleagues. It is very important for me to feel like I am a part of the team.
- Sometimes I have to “put out fires” because both teamwork and partnership involve situations were “good cop vs bad cop” is present. I am most a good cop, trying to find a compromise rather than intimidate people. For me, it is easier to accommodate some of their demands than put pressure on someone. Luckily, the outcomes are always positive for us.
- I have never encountered any gender-based violation of my rights. The company evaluates you based on your self-representation rather than gender, so salaries depend on how highly you value yourself and whether you can back it up with a sound argument. It just so happens that I am not into feminism, it has never been a part of my life.
- I got over a bit of stage fright after participating in the Affiliate World 2018 conference in Barcelona. I had to give a speech under a special section for women in affiliate marketing and e-commerce. I was sweating bullets, and in order to fight it I decided to be honest with the audience about my anxiety. So, I said that it was my first speech in English and all the women in the room encouraged me by applauding.
- I believe our company conducts a very meaningful business. All thanks to Ivan Baidin, who knows how to motivate people and makes us believe our travel affiliate program can take over the world, because no one else around the globe is doing the same thing as us. Travelpayouts is the part of Aviasales (Russian brand of Jetradar) that is able to access the international market.
- If I am emotionally exhausted and don’t want to work, I switch to monotonous activities such as reading books or playing sports in order to change my focus, because sometimes you find a solution when you let it go.
Things I’d like to improve
- I don’t like how the company works from the inside. Two people hold everything together, which creates a bottleneck for the company’s development. Our big plans to increase staffing requires a well-functioning corporate process where employees will take more responsibility for their actions.
- I don’t know much about analytics, statistics, and the analysis of high volumes of data, but I want to have a clearer perspective on a few things. I’d like to better understand how we organize development, how the scrum system works and more. Another thing is that I would like to think more strategically and plan my work in advance for the next six to twelve months.
Let’s get personal
- It is a bit trite, but my personal growth has been influenced a lot by the book “The Subtle Art of Not Giving a Fuck” by Mark Manson.
- If aliens show up one day and ask where they can best learn about the human race, I will send them to London. It is a place where I want to return to, again and again. Although, they might like Russia as a country of contrast.
- I dream about going to Latin America, Argentina in particular.
- Among my recently read books, I recommend “Atlas Shrugged” by Ayn Rand and “The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People” by Stephen Covey.
- My three favorite songs I would play at an office party are Kendrick Lamar — HUMBLE, MGMT — Electric Feel, Royal Blood — I Only Lie When I Love You.
- My current job is my dream job. I can’t think of something after Aviasales, because it feels like there is no other job that could be right for me. This company is a place where dreams come true and ambitions are reached, which I greatly appreciate.
- I see myself as an open and vivacious person that is loved and respected by those around in 10 years.
Share your opinions and questions with the Travelpayouts team in the comments below.