10 questions with Ed Maslaveckas, co-founder of Bud
Bud is a B2B open banking technology platform that enables banks and fintechs to partner through API integration.
- Describe your light bulb moment?
I was using Transferwise and I had two different bank accounts, I thought wouldn’t it be better to have it all in one place. I started speaking to some of the fintechs to ask them about their API strategy and that’s when it started to evolve and fall into place.
- The biggest challenge your business is facing to date?
Scaling a company and setting it up for fast growth is a unique challenge that requires a strong team. Finding people with the right experience is not easy, especially in London where there is a war on talent for execs and developers.
- If you could go back in time, knowing what you know now, what advice would you give to your past self?
The thing I’ve learnt most over the past year is to back yourself. As a founder you start out with full confidence in everything you’re doing because you have to. As you grow and hire senior execs, they start to challenge and question everything you do and eventually it’s quite easy to get worn down. Whilst you take in other opinions, you have to keep faith in your vision.
- Tools/ tricks to perform efficiently?
Sleep. 8 Hours.
- Talk through your strategy in building a team around you?
Culture is the number one decision maker for us. There are lots of capable, intelligent people but raw intelligence isn’t always the best test that someone can get the job done. Being an open and honest person that we can trust is the most important thing we look for, then a foundation of experience. There is no silver bullet and you have to be ready correct when you’ve made a mistake.
- What has surprised you most about starting your own business?
I’d like to say how hard it is but there is a lot of narrative around that. I think the thing that is particularly difficult is never being able to switch off regardless of if it’s going well.
- What keeps you up at night?
Everything – I have a very busy mind.
- Talk though one of your daily rituals?
I write down my daily thoughts and at the end of the week I’ll edit it. Part of thinking through strategy is that you start to question the fundamentals all the time. If you can go back and read through the logic you are able to either change your opinion and do this in a more informed way, or reaffirm what you already believe.
- If you could instantaneously gain a new skill what would it be?
To be a better coach.
- What do you read/ listen to keep informed/ inspired?
People tend to isolate themselves around their comfort zone. I read of lot of business books and text books. But ultimately you are closing yourself off to a vast majority of thoughts. So I try to bring in some slightly uncomfortable narratives on topics such as the terrible things technology is doing. Lately, I’ve found some interesting articles on Medium.