Technology-passionate people in Latin America create highly performant and reliable teams. | Forte Group

Technology-passionate people in Latin America create highly performant and reliable teams.

Pablo Blauer has worked as the director of delivery in Latin America at Forte Group for more than two years. Pablo is determined to find better and more efficient development processes which lead to more predictable outcomes and frequent value delivery against a product vision. He is an Agilist, a coach, and always a team player.

Pablo believes that working closely with key stakeholders and understanding the reasoning behind the product decisions leads to outstanding results, which empower clients’ further success.

Pablo joined Forte with a shared vision on how to deliver software, in a way, scaling up his own company’s vision. We asked him to share the challenges of building agile teams in Latin America.

How did your IT career journey start?

Everything started with a passion for technology. I was always fascinated by the power of it, even as a kid. I was the one in my primary school class who had fun with the “boring” LogoWriter. When I had my first PC at home, I invited friends to play with it and to make some developing things. Funny times! 

Naturally, I studied technology and started my first trainee job during classes. As a Java developer, I worked for a consultancy firm on several projects. That gave me a good overview of other working methods, architectures, client expectations, and working for various industries. Afterward, I worked for several years as a travel industry leader, becoming more interested in being the connection point between the development teams and the stakeholders. That’s where my managing path began. 

I’ve also been the co-founder of 2 SaaS products and a boutique software development company with a clear vision of creating Agile teams and quality software. I got the best experience in end-to-end engagements, from talent acquisition to product discoveries, to delivering and showing value to our clients.

What key points about the South American IT market should everyone know?

Indeed, being in a close time zone to our clients in the US makes it very easy to collaborate as a remote team. 

LATAM people are the key to success. They are passionate about technology and like to share and learn from others. In most countries in LATAM, you’ll find creative and dedicated people who love what they do and are eager to improve continuously. Language and culture also have no barriers. You will find one of the highest English proficiency rates. You’ll find a huge talent pool in Latin America with highly passionate people that creates highly performant and reliable teams.

Business is always about ups and downs. Have you made any mistakes in business? What lessons have you learned?

Mistakes? A lot! That’s how you learn, by inspecting and changing towards your better shape. Let’s look at my first team’s example. We started a product with partners, loved the challenging software development aspect, and thought our ideas were excellent. We were planning, story mapping, defining value, and delivering as a machine, but we never considered the user expectations. 

We learned our lesson – always validate your business ideas by doing as minimal development as possible, and don’t waste work on features users won’t use. Test and Validate your thoughts with your actual users (not with your friends).

Share the secret of how you manage to motivate people to work in the company. What kind of manager are you?

The key to motivating people is always to listen, take good care of their personal goals, understand what they want to achieve, how they want to progress, and what are the next steps in their career path and, from my standpoint, help them meet those goals. In addition, ensure to have exciting teams, product goals, and resources to excel at their jobs with passion.

What South American labor market issues do you consider the most pressing? 

South America is a constant emerging market. It’s a land of opportunities, which means that it is also a very competitive market. At Forte, we find the best talent and create exciting communities. We work hard to find key training areas and enable career growth opportunities for all our team members.

What are your requirements for candidates? I mean a bunch of hard and soft skills. Share your top five.

Hard to get a top five, but these would be some:

  • Willingness to take ownership of tasks
  • Technical appetite 
  • Desire to learn, inspect, adapt, and change 
  • Curiosity
  • Transparency
  • And, above all: team player

How did your cooperation with Forte Group begin?

We owned “Centaurico” with two great friends, a software development company based in Argentina. During our journey, we met an excellent company named Agile unicorn. We shared a common vision of delivering software with an agile mindset, delivering quality and predictable value to our clients. When CJ Montano joined Forte to bring his vision, it was clear that we would continue working together at some point. In 2021 Centaurico joined Forte with the mission to grow the Latin American presence. In just a year, we created multiple teams and delivered value for more than 15 clients. We are looking to keep increasing and finding the best talent in Latin America, so if you’re interested, don’t hesitate to contact us.

Forte Group is now spanning three continents with global offices. Are there any roadblocks to working in an international team?

Working with people on three continents brings tremendous cultural diversity, translating into different ways of sparking new ideas. I believe there’s a great value in having people across the world. However, I think that bringing the best possible collaboration and efficiency to each team is enough to be in the same time zone. Especially in this new world of remote work, I value people’s skills more than their location.

What do you think of modern IT and its future?

The demand for software engineers will keep increasing during the next few years. The pandemic accelerated a process of digital transformation that was already in place. Now, more and more businesses are not viable without technology. I believe cloud architecture is key to achieving scalability at all levels. It continues to be a critical factor in success for companies of all sizes. At Forte, we have top-level partnerships and certify our teams to develop the most efficient solutions. 

As engineers are always looking for better and more productive ways of solving problems, I see the field of artificial intelligence with great potential. Trained models can now recommend and even generate complex algorithms (AlphaCode or Copilot) or create realistic images based on random natural language inputs (Dall-e). It is far from being stable, but something that will eventually help us focus on product designing and architecture of better and more complex product solutions.

Additionally, the incredible possibilities and applications that blockchain brings into our world seem to open a new dimension and paradigm in how we will interact with each other soon. So understanding the path and being part of the technical solutions will be crucial to the success of emerging technology.

The last and essential one, share the advice you would like to receive much earlier.

Enjoy the journey, be curious, and think that with your actions, you can make things better for the world and the community around you. Always be a team player, don’t be afraid to ask questions, challenge processes, and share your ideas. They’ll get better and better after each conversion.

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Angelina Melguy

by Angelina Melguy

Angelina Melguy is an employer brand specialist at Forte Group. She is a creative and self-motivated specialist keen on learning and sharing handy information.