Noonies Interview: Daria Leshchenko on the Role of Tech in Customer Support by@dariasup

Noonies Interview: Daria Leshchenko on the Role of Tech in Customer Support

Daria Leshchenko HackerNoon profile picture

Daria Leshchenko

CEO of SupportYourApp, Support as a Service for tech. Co-founder of Label Your Data

Hey Hackers! I’m Daria Leshchenko, and I’m the CEO and Managing Partner @ SupportYourApp.

First of all, a huge thank you to the HackerNoon community and staff for nominating me for a 2021 Noonies award!

I’ve been nominated in the following categories please, do check out these award pages and vote:

  1. HackerNoon Contributor of the Year - customer-service:

  2. HackerNoon Contributor of the Year - founder-advice:

  3. HackerNoon Contributor of the Year - investment:

  4. HackerNoon Contributor of the Year - strategy:

As someone in the customer support industry, I believe that the most exciting technology of the present is AI because it changes the way companies support and interact with their customers. Learn more about my thoughts and opinions on the AI in customer support industry and my journey in the tech industry via the interview below.

1. What do you do and why do you do it? (tell us your story)

I’m CEO of SupportYourApp — a Support-as-a-Service company that provides customer support to startups and tech companies. I’ve been in the customer service industry since I was 19, and I saw it all: starting off as a customer service agent and making my way up to being a CEO.

I’ve always been good at communicating with people and was fascinated with foreign languages. Customer service was one of the industries where I could put my knowledge to good use.

After 11 years of managing the company, I’ve gathered enough expertise to launch other service-providing startups: Label Your Data and Outstaff Your Team.

2. Tell us more about the things you create / write / manage / build!

We provide all ranges of services: technical support, back office, help desk, and call center services, as well as telemarketing and sales. In addition, we built our own software: an advanced CRM system for processing inquiries and chatbot constructors. Basically, startups come to us with a request to take care of their customer support, and we make it awesome. We partner with innovative companies that share our values and are looking for high-quality care for their customers.

3. How did you end up on your current career path? Do you like it?

When I was 21, I got a job as a customer service agent at a tech company. Soon after, I was promoted to the Head of Customer Service Department and introduced a range of changes to improve it. The word got out, and the startup founder from the same office building as ours asked us to take care of his customers’ emails. I realized that startups were an underserved industry that had specific requirements for customer service.

We decided to take this niche and founded SupportYourApp. It started as a 3-people operation, but today it has over 1000 people on the team around the world and 200 customers who trust us with their business. On our way to success, I took over almost every aspect of a job: hiring, quality assurance, training, sales, etc. For nine years, I was in charge of business development in SupportYourApp, securing its first and most important clients. Currently, I’m focusing on a leadership role and the global expansion of the company.

4. What tech are you most excited or passionate about right now and why?

I’m impressed with how technologies dramatically improved customer experience and the productivity of customer service agents over the years. I’m watching closely how AI is changing the way we process customers’ tickets and am excited to not only watch but implement AI into our products. We’re cooking up the tool that helps agents navigate the ticket flow from customers using AI technologies.

5. What tech are you most worried about right now and why?

Ironically, I’m worried about AI as much as I appreciate its impact. The peculiarity of the customer service business is that it’s very human: no matter how many virtual assistants or chatbots you have, people always want to be assisted by people. The core of customer support has not changed since the beginning: it’s all about the people-to-people experience. No matter how progressive AI tech is, it will never substitute a real person.

6. If we gave you 10 million dollars to invest in something today, what would you invest in and why?

I would invest in healthcare solutions and health tech. The demand for accessible healthcare and personal health safety education is global. The pandemic increased the saturation of digital health solutions and boosted public interest in preventive medicine, wellness, mental health, and affordable healthcare.

The Digital Health Market size is estimated to grow at over 17.4% between 2021 and 2027. If I had 10 million dollars, they would go into supporting revolutionary healthcare solutions.

7. What are you currently learning?

I just finished the Ukrainian Corporate Governance Academy, where I studied different approaches to running a company. I believe, even after a decade of managing experience, it’s still important to learn and update your skills. The world never stops, and the rules of leadership change as fast as the business landscape. What used to work before may not work now. Continuous education is important for every executive. I’m currently searching for a new direction of self-development.

8. What’s the best advice you’ve ever given someone?

Don’t lose yourself in the success of others. Social media made it seem like everybody around us is successful, and all you have to do is to follow the same path as our role models. But the truth is more complicated: you can’t replicate success just by duplicating someone else’s steps. And you shouldn’t feel the pressure to do so. Find your own path to success, and don’t be surprised if it’s bumpier than expected.

9. What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?

It’s funny but still relevant advice I got from my granny: when the clock strikes six in the evening, shut your mouth and open your books. She believed that evenings are better spent learning something new rather than getting stuffed before heading to sleep. I got into a habit. I’m still sticking to the idea that a good book every evening is better than a drink or a heavy meal.

About HackerNoon’s 2021 Noonie Awards

The annual Noonie Awards celebrate the best and brightest of the tech industry, bringing together all who are making the Internet and the world of tech what it is today. Please be sure to check out our award categories, nominate, and vote for the people and companies who you think are making the biggest impact on the tech industry today.

The 2021 Noonies are sponsored by: bybit, Dottech Domains, and Avast. Thank you so much to these sponsors who are helping us celebrate the accomplishments of all our nominees.


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