I am thrilled and honoured to be working with such great people on the Founders of Scaling program at IESE. This is an exciting program designed to help carefully identified European-based enterprises move from start-up to scale-up. The program aims to create a quorum of like-minded CEOs and diverse companies to provide them with access to the experiences, technical know-how and practical skills required to navigate their way through the continually changing landscape of a start-up.
The Founders of Scaling course is the first in a series of many programs that will be offered as part of the IESE School of Founders (SoF) initiative. The school, which is a new business unit within IESE’s executive education division, will offer dedicated executive programs and resources for founders of scale-ups. Through the IESE Founders Club, it will also provide an active community where international entrepreneurs can come together to learn and grow.
With only seven percent of European Union firms employing more than nine people, the SoF can provide a needed boost to Europe’s entrepreneurship system, say IESE professors Thomas Klueter and Juan Roure, Academic Directors of the School of Founders. “If starting a company is hard, scaling it is even more demanding, with most new ventures struggling at this crucial transition stage. Yet, by bringing together peers at the same stage and providing high-impact training that specifically addresses the unique challenges that founders face when scaling their business, the School of Founders can help entrepreneurs turn the odds of success in their favour.”
IESE is at the forefront of this innovative approach and the initiative aligns perfectly with the mission. “We develop leaders who strive to have a deep, positive and lasting impact on people, companies and society through professional excellence, integrity and spirit of service.”
Working with the program director Sebastian Ross and fellow leadership coach a Trainer Stephen Stynes has been an enriching learning experience I have been most impressed with the willingness of the program designers to ask some bold questions.
- How do you manage the tension between purpose and profitability?
- What does your “inner game” look like?
- What part have you played in bringing your company to this point?
In this year-long program, the participants will be tested, provoked and challenged to think in new ways about how they lead their business in a sustainable people-focused way.
I am humbled to be part of this groundbreaking project and look forward to learning, growing and sharing over the next 12 months.