Karen Lawson is an advisory board Member at the Sydney Start Up Hub, the largest in the southern hemisphere. She is the former CEO of corporate startup accelerator Slingshot and is an award winning growth & transformation leader in the technology industry. Previously the CEO NewsCorp’s CareerOne and the General Manager at Yahoo!7, Karen drives reinvention and transformation to help the world’s biggest brands stay ahead of disruption.
Karen moved Slingshot from a startup into the #1 position in Australia, forging partnership with the top tech companies and winning contracts with global brands such as Qantas, Lion, SEEK, NewsCorp, HCF, Caltex along with state and federal governments. The total market capitalisation of its alumni grew to over $507m having accelerated over 128 businesses via its $15m Slingshot Venture Fund.
She disrupted her own industry (and company) by launching CoVentured, a global platform to connect corporates and startups. Within 6 months 50 corporates joined such as Westpac, Australia Post, Woolworths and over 70% of Australian startups.
Passionate about the startup ecosystem she mentors a number of startups, CEO's and industry bodies.
Karen reinvented CareerOne, a JV between News Corp and Monster turning around a loss leading business into growth, partnering with a startup (Airtasker), winning BRW ‘Top 50 most innovative companies’ list and then a trade sale.
Karen is extremely passionate about diversity, culture and helping others achieve their true potential.
She is a recognised media commentator, with appearances on TV, radio in print and digital, as well as industry forums. She is also a luxury food and travel journalist. Her commitment to not only driving innovation and disruption but also to promoting D&I resulted in Karen being selected as UN ambassador for Women's Entrepreneurship Day, Rare Birds Speaker, Nominee for Telstra Woman of the Year, Judge Telstra Woman of the Year, Australian Growth Company Awards, Women's Agenda finalist 2017 and Smart Company Women in Tech 2018.
Karen delivers an in-house workshop 'David and Goliath' that focuses on how corporates can innovate like startups, gain a competitive edge in the global world and whether or not corporates should kill startups, collaborate with them or try to be more like them.
Deep dive into the challenges of driving innovation in a corporate and the different stages of innovation
Trends in corporate growth
Understand whether you will compete, collaborate or imitate through a strong understanding of the startup ecosystem; including what's happening globally, best practice and the different systems to engage with
Identify the right pathways for your business
How to navigate a messy and changing world to drive business value and gain a competitive edge
This workshop is aimed at corporates; CEO's, executive team members, head of business development/partnership and corporate strategy.
Karen is available for coaching and consulting engagements for start ups and corporates, specialising in the following areas:
Coaching; Women in leadership, career coaching, diversity and innovation initiatives, personal branding
Consulting (startups): Business development, working with corporates, scaling, pitching, channel strategy, founder coaching and LinkedIn strategy
Consulting (corporates): Growth, building startup strategy, startup connections, evaluation of options, business development, partnerships, innovation, disruption, diversity and innovation strategy
Karen is available for formal keynote presentations and informal lunch and learn sessions
Innovator's Dilemma: What is it?
3 horizons of innovation: Why you need it
Corporate antibodies: What they are and how to identify and understand them
Mega trends: The company life span, adoption changes, funding changes
The startup ecosystem: Workshop all the different sectors from coworking, incubators, educators, VC, accelerators, deep dive into accelerators, venture capital, global v local, state of startups, what industries are being disrupted, who are starting start ups, scallops v startups
Options for corporate growth: CVC global changes, difference between corporates and startups, what are the challenges and advantages, how do you engage with startups, how to create a framework for growth
Blackbird, Squarepeg + more
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