Helen Yu is the Founder of Tigon Advisory Corp. She drives growth for tech companies from start-ups to global titans like Oracle and Adobe, and helps CEOs achieve multibillion-dollar revenue growth and record profitability. She’s a board advisor to fast-growth SaaS companies and is on the board of the Global Cybersecurity Association.
She’s a top Twitter influencer with a 10M+ weekly reach and was ranked a Top 10 thought leader by Thinkers 360, and a top 10 digital transformation influencer by IBM. She’s spoken at SXSW, TiECon, DMS, and Money2020. An avid adventurer who trekked to Mt. Everest base camp and ice-climbed glaciers, her book Ascend Your Start-up: Conquer the 5 Disconnects to Accelerate Growth achieved WSJ best-selling status in addition to winning 3 book awards in 2021.
Tell us about your life before the venture/ leading up to your venture?
I started my career as an accountant and financial analyst. My curiosity and learning agility got me where I am today. I learned to code as a Hyperion consultant, and went on to design and implement 400+ financial planning applications working alongside CFOs. Then, I ran an Oracle BI consulting practice post-acquisition with the added pleasure of learning from then Oracle Executive Vice President of Sales Keith Block. Under his tutelage, I learned the nuances of Enterprise Solution Sales at Oracle. I then learned marketing and SAAS at Adobe, and successfully led the startup to scale-up challenges at Marketo. My journey led me to recognize critical gap patterns in growth-driven technology startups, prompting me to become an entrepreneur of a startup accelerator.
Tell us something about your organization. What is it about and how is it helpful for people?
I’d rather talk about my award-winning book “Ascend Your Start-Up“. The “why” behind ascending Mount Everest was to keep a sacred promise to my grandmother and that was to leave her ashes on a tall mountain. I felt unstoppable. I made up my mind that nothing would hold me back from my climb. My destination started out, not on any map, but in my mind. Making the decision to write Ascending Your Startup was no different. I felt it was yet another way to honor the grit and resilience Grandma taught growing up and honor the grit and resilience it takes to scale a start-up.
What has been the response of the consumers towards your venture?
One thing common to all founders, is the path of complex decisions that must be made in order to survive and scale. In the more than 500 conversations I have had with founders, I haven’t found a single person who doesn’t want to grow faster. There is an urgency to survive and a vision to thrive faced by the founders. At each crossroad is a decision you must make that helps or hinders growth. My book is a decision framework that helps founders build a stronger, more focused approach to their ascent and bridge the disconnects that hold them back. My book was well received with 6000 units being sold during the first few months. It won 3 book awards on top of WSJ best seller and Amazon best seller.
How has your life changed because of your venture?
I took 8 months off to write “Ascend Your Start-Up” during the pandemic. Looking back, it was one of the best investments I made professionally and personally. Writing has been a way of expressing myself since I was in high school being an introvert. Doing one new thing each year allowed me to stay on my toes and constantly expand myself. More opportunities knock on my door as a result.
Give a motivational message for the audience/women who are reading this.
I am grateful for having a strong social media presence, especially in today’s environment. Invest some time to build your network through social media channels will pay dividends.