Emotional Intelligence In an App

25 Jul 2022 News Women in STEM
Emotional Intelligence Flourish

Flourish is an emotional intelligence app that measures, improves and maintains emotional intelligence affordably via interactive, fully personalized exercises.

In less than ten minutes per day.

This interview one of its two co-founders, Valentina Radulović, from Montenegro.

What is Flourish exactly and why it’s important?

Jasna (Pejović), my best friend, colleague and business associate and myself like to say that Flourish is our brainchild.

The idea appeared in 2019. The two of us, both mathematicians-programmers by education, became certified coaches at the American Institute for Social-Emotional Intelligence.

Emotional Intelligence Jasna ValentinaThe synergy of the two different fields such as programming and emotional intelligence helped the idea to automate the process of emotional intelligence development evolve.

The concept of emotional intelligence is relatively young, compared to the concept of cognitive intelligence, but not less important. On the contrary.

Emotional Intelligence is the fuel that runs people. Emotional intelligence directly affects the happiness and life satisfaction of individuals and boosts company results and performance.

According to the World Economic Forum and UNICEF, emotional intelligence is among the top three competences needed for success in Digital Era.

In addition, emotional intelligence can be improved by 25%, but current solutions for its development are expensive and not effective.

Now a few words about Digital Bee?

DigitalBee has been already three years in the market with its brand “Digitalna Akademija” and the educational program “Vise od programiranja” (More than Programming). This unique program has been attended by more than 700 children. In addition to programming, they developed emotional intelligence and creativity skills.

One of our breakthrough events happened in November 2021 when DigitalBee became a licensed educational institution for the education of adults, We are now the only company in Montenegro with a license to run educational programs "Digital Marketing" and "Database".

Jasna and I enjoy knowledge transfer as we believe knowledge is the source of strength and freedom for an individual. We are passionate about sharing this gift with great love and passion.

In recent months you were quite successful in regional and European competitions. How exposure to a larger community helps you evolve and grow?

Although we have had great leadership and corporate experience in international companies, developing a startup requires special knowledge. So in 2020, we applied and received support from the local accelerator BoostmeUp Technopolis then helped us to organize the testing of the Flourish prototype. Empowered, we carried on.


We are winners of the European funded project EU4Tech (2020) and the UNDP Boost (2021) which provided mentoring assistance from world-renowned experts and companies. For example, the UK Deloitte carried out market research for us while the UNDP experts identified that Flourish has a positive impact on four UN's sustainable development goals (SDGs).

Most recently, among 150+ international startups we were selected by BigBooster in July 2022 for positive impact. By being BigBooster finalist and winners, we will be supported and guided by international experts in the upcoming six months to accelerate our international strategy for addressing markets of France and USA.

You had a stellar career in telecommunications but decided to risk it all. Why?

I started my career in Crnogorski Telekom which is a part of Deutsche Group and spent more than 17 years in IT, Network and Technology units. I started as a trainee in IT Sector, and my career was developing from managing and governing various IT and Network development and operations teams, leading and governing projects, and finally being CTIO.

Corporation shaped me and enabled me to gain state-of-the-art professional expertise, intercultural thinking, and acting. And then, some changes kicked me out of my comfort zone.

I couldn't feel drive nor a sense of belonging. So, I decided to leave corporate career and become an entrepreneur. It required a lot of courage. I was constantly questioning myself since it was a riskier and harder way to go, but I have chosen to believe to my gut feeling.

In a hindsight, I know that it was the right thing to do.

What needs to be done to improve the overall startup environment and encourage the growth or risk culture?

It needs changing of our mindsets which is time-consuming activity. We need various and constant schemas, campaigns, pre-accelerators and accelerators to empower young people to be creative and innovative. Startups need this push in terms of financing their ideas, as well as gaining expertise and knowledge on how to make their ideas come true and alive.

What are the key characteristics of the Montenegrin and regional startup scenes?

Our Western Balkans startup scene is still trying to catch up to western peers. There is a lot of potentials but we are facing various challenges such as brain drain and very limited funding.

Luckily, new programs and initiatives such as accelerators, boost programs, etc., are aiming to support startups with significant funds, expertise, mentoring support and the possibility to develop their network through exposure to  innovative companies and industry leaders.

You are one of the first members of the regional Women in STEM Network. What is your motivation and what you seek to accomplish through the Network?

Being one of the first members of the regional Women in STEM Network is a real pleasure and honour. Women from all six Western Balkan economies are working toward a single overarching objective: empowerment of women through inclusive and meaningful participation in STEM in academia and industry.

We must increase the participation and representation of girls and women in STEM both in academia and the business sector. By promoting role models of successful women in STEM we will inspire girls and women to enter the study and/or career path in STEM.

Afterwards, appropriate and timely motivation and encouragement of STEM girls and women will enable them to become and do whatever they want.

The Network is providing an aspiring atmosphere to make things better starting locally and spreading further to the region. The Network has a huge potential to make a positive difference and we will do our best to fulfil already identified goals and go beyond.