ScaleUpBoard alumni stories
After over two decades working in innovation departments for different corporates (Corbion, Unilever), Anieke Wierenga had the desire to better understand how scale-ups function. That’s the key reason why she joined the ScaleUpBoard program in 2019.
That was the start of her journey with ScaleUpNation, which in 2021 led her to stepping up as the CEO of the company. We’ve asked Anieke a few questions about her experience with ScaleUpBoard – what her learnings were, how she implements them in her job now, and what advice she would give to aspiring scale-up board members. Check out the highlights below.
Anieke’s boardroom learnings
- Scaling a company involves a lot of stakeholders. It’s very valuable to get insights into how the other stakeholders think and interact with the management team. Participants learned a lot from each other in the program because there are investors, entrepreneurs, and board members in the class, and they each get to hear about the others’ perspectives in their respective roles
- Those with corporate backgrounds who aspire to join a scale-up don’t have to start from scratch. Anieke realized that even though a scale-up is a very different organization from a large multinational company, a lot of the knowledge that she brought from her past experiences was also valuable for scale-up teams.
- In order to guide founders who are going through their scaling journey, you need to know what it actually takes to scale a company. That’s why ScaleUpBoard participants learn all about our scaling methodology, The Art of Scaling.
From learnings to practice
After graduating from ScaleUpBoard, Anieke joined the ScaleUpNation team as the director of ScaleUpFood, our program for scaling food&agri ventures. As of January 2021, she has stepped up as CEO of ScaleUpNation.
In ScaleUpBoard she got notions on how important it is for scale-up CEOs to not get sidetracked by the daily clutter and know how to put everything into perspective. Those insights helped her to become ScaleUpNation CEO, as she understood that “things don’t develop sequentially, and they go at a fast pace. You have to build an overarching strategy while you’re raising money, developing your HR team, and so on. Everything needs to be in balance”.
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