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Alexander M. Swoboda: The Symphony of Leadership and Adaptability in a Dual-CEO Journey

Leading with Agility: Alexander M. Swoboda on Dual CEO Success and Balance

In this captivating installment of Bright Founders Talk at Temy, an inspiring podcast from the international software development company Temy, host Barry introduces us to a special guest. Alexander M. Swoboda, the dynamic CEO of FACTON and CrescentOne Inc., graces the show with his insights and experiences.

The interview kicks off with a warm welcome and quickly dives into Alexander’s unique position as the CEO of two distinct companies. His journey, from an interim CFO to leading two major firms, unfolds with engaging anecdotes and lessons learned. Alexander’s ambition and strategic acumen shine as he discusses his path from McKinsey to the executive suite, and his role in significant transactions like the sale of FACTON to Constellation.

The conversation delves into the nuances of managing two companies, the different relationships he has with each, and his management philosophy centered on trust, responsibility, and people development. Alexander also reflects on the contrasts between startup dynamics and the challenges of steering a long-established enterprise. This interview offers a rare glimpse into the mind of a leader who skillfully balances dual CEO roles while continuously seeking growth and impact in the tech industry.

Leading with Agility: Alexander M. Swoboda on Dual CEO Success and Balance
Dual CEO Alexander M. Swoboda: Mastering the Art of Leadership in Two Worlds

Alexander M. Swoboda’s journey is nothing short of a masterclass in agile leadership. When you hear him speak, it’s like unwrapping layers of an onion, each layer more intriguing than the last. He started his career with a burning ambition, reminiscent of a young, business-savvy Michael J. Fox in “Family Ties.” From his early days at McKinsey, Alexander’s trajectory was never about following a set path; it was about carving his own. He transitioned from consulting to venture capital, and then, in a move that would define his career, took over FACTON. There’s a candid charm in the way he talks about these transitions, each step a building block in his impressive career.

But what’s fascinating is Alexander’s unique approach to managing two distinct entities: FACTON and CrescentOne. Imagine being a parent to two companies, each with its own personality and needs. For 14 years, he nurtured FACTON, imbibing it with his values and vision. Then came CrescentOne, a larger, more established player. Alexander’s knack for understanding the pulse of each company and tailoring his management style accordingly is a lesson in adaptability and empathy. “I believe in sharing responsibility and giving people the chance to grow,” he says. This philosophy, rooted deep in his leadership style, serves as his north star in navigating the complexities of dual CEOship.

Perhaps the most striking aspect of Alexander’s leadership is his commitment to not micromanaging. He recognizes the perils of being overly involved as a CEO. “If you do everything as the CEO and interfere with everything, you educate the organization not to take on responsibility,” he states succinctly. This belief in delegation and trust has enabled him to wear multiple hats effectively, transitioning from operational roles to strategic oversight. Alexander’s journey is a testament to the fact that true leadership is about empowering others, a principle he exemplifies in every facet of his dual role.

If you do everything as the CEO and interfere with everything, you educate the organization not to take on responsibility

In our latest segment with Alexander, the dynamic CEO of FACTON and CrescentOne, he dives into the essence of effective leadership. Alexander shares candidly about his initial challenges transitioning from a consulting mindset to a CEO’s strategic view at FACTON. He recalls a poignant mentorship experience with an older colleague, emphasizing the importance of learning from those around you. This anecdote is a testament to his humility and willingness to adapt. “I learned a lot from him, how to take myself back and allow others to make mistakes,” Alexander reflects, highlighting a key lesson in leadership: empowering others.

Discussing the operational dynamics of FACTON and CrescentOne, Alexander provides insight into the unique nature of enterprise software companies. He notes the deep integration of these companies into their customers’ operations, providing a stability that buoys them even in tough market conditions. “When times are tough, people don’t think about switching off the ERP system,” Alexander explains, showcasing his strategic acumen in understanding market dynamics and customer loyalty. His approach underlines the importance of building strong, long-term customer relationships in business.

Alexander also touches on the challenges and rewards of leading companies through growth and stabilization phases. He eloquently balances the need for innovation with the necessity of maintaining a stable and reliable tech infrastructure. “Growth phases can be enormously stressful… It’s good to have some time to consolidate,” he states. This philosophy not only highlights his pragmatic approach to business growth but also underscores his foresight in anticipating and preparing for future market shifts.

I learned a lot from him, how to take myself back and allow others to make mistakes

Alexander M. Swoboda: Juggling Dual CEO Roles with a Human Touch

In a recent candid conversation, Alexander M. Swoboda, the CEO of both FACTON and CrescentOne, delved into the complexities of leading two companies. He discussed the unprecedented challenges brought by the COVID-19 pandemic, emphasizing the importance of flexibility and agility in management. Alexander believes that while history may not repeat, it certainly rhymes, suggesting that future challenges will require a similar adaptability. His perspective sheds light on the critical need for CEOs to remain vigilant and ready to pivot, despite the unpredictable nature of global events.

Alexander’s approach to leadership is deeply rooted in his passion for people and his analytical nature. He values connections, both in business and personal life, and attributes much of his success to this quality. Interestingly, he reflects on his journey with a sense of practical introspection, acknowledging past hesitations in decision-making. “Probably taking tough decisions too late,” he admits, revealing his evolution as a leader who now embraces more boldness in his choices. This self-awareness is a hallmark of a leader continually striving for improvement.

Probably taking tough decisions too late

At the heart of Alexander’s success is his ability to maintain a delicate balance between his professional responsibilities and personal life. He views blending work and family life not as a challenge, but as an integrated approach to living a fulfilled life. This philosophy extends to his self-care, viewing physical fitness as crucial to maintaining his performance as a leader. His method of seamlessly integrating various aspects of his life serves as an inspiring model for aspiring leaders juggling multiple responsibilities.

Alexander M. Swoboda: Cultivating a Culture of Trust and Flexibility in Dual Leadership

Alexander M. Swoboda, the charismatic leader at the helm of FACTON and CrescentOne, shared his innovative approach to workplace culture in our recent chat. He encourages a blend of professional dedication and personal well-being among his staff, mirroring his own philosophy. At FACTON, initiatives like team cycling and running events foster a sense of community and health. Alexander’s management style breaks the conventional 9-to-5 mold, advocating for flexibility to accommodate personal needs like midday runs or family time. This modern approach to work-life balance is a breath of fresh air, resonating deeply in today’s dynamic work environment.

Diving deeper into his leadership journey, Alexander emphasized the value of mentorship and diverse influences rather than a singular guiding figure. His career path, rich with varied experiences at McKinsey, a venture capital fund, and leading companies, reflects a mosaic of lessons learned from numerous mentors. He treasures a network of about ten key individuals, each offering unique perspectives to help navigate different challenges. Within the ecosystem of Constellation, Alexander finds comfort in having peers and managers as sparring partners, highlighting the importance of collaborative support in executive roles.

When discussing recruitment, Alexander’s foremost criterion is integrity, a trait he deems non-negotiable. He seeks analytically sharp individuals with a burning passion for their work, valuing potential and enthusiasm over perfect resumes. Addressing age diversity, he dismisses ageism, appreciating the value that seasoned professionals bring to his teams. His belief in the vibrant interplay of experience and enthusiasm underlines his commitment to building diverse and dynamic teams. Alexander’s insights into leadership and team dynamics provide a blueprint for aspiring entrepreneurs and business leaders.

I need to be able to trust people… integrity goes beyond everything else

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