Romania | Subsystem CTO

Bogdan Tenea

Before joining Crossover, Bogdan had a successful career as an entrepreneur in Bucharest and later as a product manager for an industry-leading company in computer networking in the US. Even so, he decided to join Crossover because the compensation was unbeatable, and CTO Remote Camp presented an opportunity to learn more in a short amount of time than he ever has at any other point in his career. “It’s really one of the hardest things I have ever done,” Bogdan says of the experience. We interviewed Bogdan to hear more about his experience in Crossover’s Remote Camp and the team he’s working with today.

You were part of a recent group of Remote Camp graduates in the central CTO team. Can you tell us a little bit more about the experience?

Remote Camp is one month long and - what can I say? - it’s super intense. It’s one of the hardest and most challenging things I have ever done. I learned a lot. I learned everything from how to interview CTO-level people to how to extract technical insights from interviews, how to structure them into really concise documents, and how to understand and extract all of the important details about a company and their products.

To succeed in Remote Camp you really have to want it. It’s not like a one-week sprint; you have to be super focused for a whole month. But honestly, I would recommend going through Remote Camp just for the experience itself. There’s really no other place where you can learn so much in just one month and at the same time also get paid for it.

Now that you’ve graduated Remote Camp, what do you do in your role as Subsystem CTO?

I interview CTOs and chief architects from the companies that we acquire, either in the pre-acquisition phase as due diligence or post-acquisition, and I drill down and find out the most important technical decisions they have made in the past 10-15 years so our engineers can immediately pick up the product, and maintain it and enhance it.

The role is strategic because we’re tasked with determining if the companies we’re considering buying have actual technical differentiation and if there’s technical value in the product themselves. The Subsystem CTO role is important in the due diligence phase, but it’s also important post-acquisition because then you need to take over the product roadmap and figure out what are the areas you need to invest based on what the market wants.

What are you learning in your role?

I’m learning something new every single week. Interviewing founders, CTOs and chief architects in different industries every week creates an enormous opportunity to learn about different industries I’ve never come in contact with, from people who have been experts in that industry for ten, fifteen and even twenty years sometimes. It’s also an opportunity to learn new technical aspects. You can learn about technologies people used years ago, and you can also learn from younger companies who are using more advanced and modern technologies like Cloud and even Serverless. I have the huge opportunity to be in contact with technologies all over the spectrum really.

Many of your colleagues graduated from Remote Camp with you - what is it like working with them now?

At this moment, my team consists of around 25 Subsystem CTOs. It’s a really diverse bunch; we have people from Australia, India, all over Europe, Russia, Iceland, the U.S... so you really get the perspective of people from all over with many different backgrounds having worked in various industries. Any time there’s something you don’t understand or need help with, there’s someone in the team who has experience with that particular topic who can help. Everyone on the team is highly skilled, often with CTO-level experience, which makes this a really good place to work, learn and grow.

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