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Reuben Abootorabi, Disruption for Hire

Reuben Abootorabi, CEO and Founder of The Austin Agency, is our eighth guest of Humanizing Software, where we explore the concept of software and its relationship to humans. Since 2012, the Austin Agency has helped corporations turn into startups. Using a combination of “Shark Tank”-esque pitching matched with market research, Reuben’s team drives their clients toward innovation and execution. They have built strategic relationships across the world and worked with companies like Pepsi, Google, Visa, Pfizer, and Chase.

Developing a Success Driven Mindset

Reuben moved across the Atlantic, from Norway to the US, and received a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Oregon in Business and Managerial Economics. His Norwegian-Iranian heritage gave him a diversity of experiences, thus turning him into an experimenting visionary. From college onwards, Reuben’s journey to creating the Austin Agency took 12 years. Along the way, he honed his sales and leadership skills while developing his growth mindset.

After graduating, Reuben worked at Balboa Capital, a technology-driven independent financing company based in Irvine, California for over 2 years. First, he was the Director of Six Sigma then he advanced to become the Director of Capital Markets. He demonstrated leadership at a young age and drove sales with multiple stakeholders within Balboa Capital and their partners, like GE Commercial Finance. This was one of his early experiences handling high-stake relationships and consequently leading teams into success. He then worked at GLS, a logistics & supply chain company as the Director of Business Development for 6 years.

In 2012 Reuben was faced with new life experiences which lead him to rethink and reroute his career goals. With strong mentors and robust business goals, Reuben sought out to create the Austin Agency.

Pioneering tech through strong personal leadership

It takes strong personal leadership coupled with successful methodology and proven industry knowledge in business strategy, sales, and new business development to create an internationally recognized market validation company. “Disruption for hire” is how Reuben’s approach is often described. 

The Austin Agency creates a professional space for teams to test their business strategy and reveal blind spots in their current plans. This is carried out by a pitching process with a real target market in a “no risk” environment. The success of this model is incredible. Clients get real-time reactions on how the market would respond to their ideas based on scoring and customer feedback.

Reuben is a deep thinker skilled at creating interpersonal relationships that develop into partnerships and business development with renowned decision-makers. By creating an innovative and rigorous space for other leaders to test out their company’s ideas, Reuben is the prime example of our “people first” mission. We thoroughly enjoyed our conversation by learning more about Reuben’s experiences and ideas.

Catch the October 19 Livecast episode with guest Reuben Abootorabi and host Andrew Tull on their lively conversation about human-driven technology on Humanizing Software!  

Watch Humanizing Software Ep. 8 with Reuben Abootorabi!

Meet the Author

Anahit Poturyan is a writer, art educator, and digital marketer based in LA with a strong focus on technology, research, history, and culture. She received her B.A. in English Literature and an Art History minor from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) and an M.A. in Aesthetics and Politics from the California Institute of Art (CalArts). She has worked at the Peggy Guggenheim in Venice, Italy; the 58th Venice Biennale, the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA), the Hammer Museum, Artbook @Hauser & Wirth, and Otis College of Art and Design. She has lectured at numerous conferences across the world, such as the Nordic Summer University in Faro, Sweden, and the Western University of Australia, Perth, Australia. Her writings have appeared in the LA Review of Books, MediaTech Ventures, Whitehot Magazine, among others.

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