Our graduates really surprise us sometimes – and often even themselves – when we see the interesting twist & turns their life-paths takes. Take Ditte Wulff from Team 14 as an example. She was never much of a tech-geek and yet she now finds herself being the CEO at one of Denmark’s very innovative tech-companies “23” (www.23video.dk), that just recently brought a fresh new take on video-CMS to the international market. Even though her knowledge about the field has dramatically increased, its not her computer-expertise that got her the job, rather her firm believe in the potential in people  no matter who they are and what they do.

 

KP: What have you been doing since you left Kaospilot in 2010?

 
DW: I originally took on my final project and developed it further and build a business on that for three years.

 
KP: What was that about?

 
DW: It was called “The Meeting House” – “Mødehuset” in danish. It was about designing a concept to enable people to have better internal meetings. So it was a way to translate all the process-tools – the very abstract process-tools from the Kaospilots – into something specific that could be applied in the everyday life of organizations. That brought me into the field of doing general organizational work where I also worked with “23” as one of my clients.  So I was working for three years in my own company.

 
KP: And then you ended up here. So what was the short gap between having your own company and now sitting here?

 
DW: The “short gap” was an offer that was too interesting to say “no” to… Even though I really really loved having my own company I got the offer to become CEO at “23”. Basically the opportunity to translate a lot of stuff into hardcore learning – and not as a consultant – but being involved in a company and shaping it and not just talking about “effective leadership” but actually executing it on an everyday level, scaling a team and tackling questions like how do you scale culture? how do you involve people?

 
KP: Going from the theoretical level and to actual “hands-on”. Today what do you use of your Kaospilot-education, and what do you think of the skills you acquired during your three years at school?

 
DW: It is always a tricky question when you get that. I think basically what I use the most is that it send me off on a journey I didn’t expect to be send out on. And that sounds very big but I properly use myself as a leader in a way that I had no idea was possible. It was also a very clear direction I took during the education – I was one of the “process people” on the team (laughs) so I definitely use a lot of the process stuff. The funny thing is that I use it in a really, really entrepreneurial world, so I also use some knowledge about the entrepreneurial spirit because my day-to-day job is basically to get entrepreneurs to work together.  My challenge is to work together with two very very entrepreneurial guys, and make their dreams come alive together with a team. So that is probably that sort of holistic understanding and actually that is… mmm.. I hate to say “soft”… but more people oriented… – yeah, I use the more people oriented approach to leadership for sure. Its really, really fun to get the opportunity to build a growth company on empowerment, coaching and personal/talent development. That is super exciting!

 
KP: That sounds very exciting. Now that you are a couple of years down the line, and if you are thinking back to when you were sitting thinking about applying to the school, what sort of advice would you like to give to your “younger self” – or the people out there considering: Is this for me, is this something I should take on?

 
DW: That is a good question. I think it’s good to know when you start the journey that it is a lot more that what it is perceived as. This is my horror scenario from when I applied to the school (laughs): I read about somebody in this big KP-book (Kaospilot A-Z red.) “One morning I just woke up and I felt like pizza so I took my bike and I rode to Italy” (laughs). That scene still sticks with me because it made me feel like: ”oh my god I am just not creative enough, or interesting enough or weird enough or “hipster” enough to be a Kaospilot”. And it is really really fun when you come to the school that there are people who wake up one morning and feel like pizza and take their bike (laughs) – and that is amazing – but there is also people who don’t  take the bike and go to Italy, but just go down the street and buy the regular pizza (laughs). There is people from lots of different backgrounds and environments and of coarse you all shape from the same paradigm, but I think if you look at the diversity of our team it was huge. So the advice is to not define Kaospilot as one thing, but also know that what you sign up to is basically that that diversity becomes a part of you in a somewhat disturbing way (laughs) but it is something that you bring with you afterwards. That is probably the “transformative power” if you want to speak about that part of the Kaospilots: that its not only about skills and tools but about the journey. Wow its big words (laughs) six years later. Oh the journey.

 

KP: (laughs) The journey continues…

 

DW: (laughs) Yes, its amazing.

 

KP: Yeah that is quite amazing. Thank you Ditte! Such a pleasure.