Astia was founded in Silicon Valley in 1999 as a non-profit organization dedicated to identifying and promoting best-in-class women high-growth entrepreneurs. It is transforming the way businesses are funded in the here and now, providing capital, connections, and guidance that fuel the growth of highly innovative, women-led ventures around the globe. They have recently had a number of investment successes and want to build on them to further their charitable objectives and build the number of successful women entrepreneurs.
They run a regular retreat for their global board of trustees, to evaluate progress and make strategic decisions.
Jane Lewis of Hidden Insights was invited by the CEO to facilitate their latest retreat. She was introduced to Astia via the Change Leaders, the alumni group of the Coaching and Consulting for Change masters’ programme (run jointly by Saïd Business School, University of Oxford, and HEC Paris).
Jane used the Hidden Insights principles of getting ownership and pinning down what specifically is working. The concept of the “group as the guru” worked really well. The board, consisting of a group of international investors, business angels, academics and entrepreneurs, were able to navigate to an agreed strategy, with key elements that were critical for success. Everyone had a voice, thanks to the techniques used, and their expertise was leveraged. The group challenged each other with respect, and with evidence.
Feedback was exceptional:
- “Our best retreat ever!”
- “A humongous thank you!”
- “We appreciate your style and your tricks to get to Hidden Insights.”
The Chief Executive Officer commented: “I felt that we had an exceptional retreat, thanks in large part to your contributions and facilitations”.
The Chairman said “My sense is that the organisation comes out of this with a renewed and enhanced sense of what is possible, and if we have any success at all with delivering on the new objectives, then our debt to you will only grow!”
The company reported further successes emerging, including a successful exit two weeks later, where a 32-year old woman’s start up sold for $275m.
Jane is facilitating a follow-up video conference in October. If you’d like to discuss having us facilitate your meetings, get in touch.
This article was first published in our Spring 2018 E-News. You can read it HERE.