Leadinng to Scale-Up

Prepare your company for growth with Innovaud and IMD

The LeadiNNg to Scale-Up program is designed to propel Vaud-based tech companies from promising startups to fast-growing scale-ups.

By giving you the tools to lead your company to the next stage of its development, the program will prepare you to face upcoming challenges related to scaling-up.

Together with IMD, this program has been built based on feedback from successful scale-ups, specifically to support the next-generation of fast growing tech companies.

You will be challenged by two IMD professors, Jim Pulcrano and Benoît Leleux, who bring more than 60 years of experience in entrepreneurship and scale-ups as founders, investors, mentors and teachers. They bring enormous value and an international mindset to the program. You will also benefit from Innovaud’s broad network as well as a direct connection to the Scale Up Vaud community.



First, you will go through a 60 minutes interview with an IMD professor, to get a sense of you and your firm’s development stage and challenges. This exchange will also confirm your scalability potential and founder motivation. Based on your needs, we will adapt the content and format of the LeadiNNg to Scale-Up program.


1 half-day of kick-off to get straight into the topic and get to know your peers. The goal of the program is to create a trustful group where you are confident to exchange and learn from each other.


Over 6 months, you will go through 10 sessions of 2-3 hours. Each session will be split in two parts: the first one will be covered by an IMD entrepreneurship professor and the other one by an experienced entrepreneur on the specific topic. The sessions will be hosted approximately every 3 weeks, in the evenings.  

NB: One of your co-founders should apply and be participating regularly in the program to enable deeper exchanges in the group. Nevertheless, if you can’t join all the sessions, you can bring another member of your team to some of them.   

Between sessions there will be “homework”, designed to take ideas and concepts deeper into your venture, and provide you with continuous practical feedback.


Once a month, you will be invited to the Scale Up Vaud networking events. A closing ceremony will also be organized to foster networking with a broader network.

Useful links

Scale Up Vaud


Download the flyer




Delivery mode

Depending on the sanitary situation, the program will take place physically at IMD Business School (Lausanne) or online.


  • September – Call for applications 
  • October 3rd – Deadline to apply
  • November-December – Interviews
  • January 2022 – Kick-off
  • June 2022 – End of the program

Admission criteria and process


We welcome founders of innovative tech companies based in Vaud, which have an international ambition to scale. Your company should employ at least 8 persons, have raised a significant Seed Round (>1 mio) and be planning a Series A (or have just closed it). The program is industry agnostic.


The selection is on a “first come, first served” basis. Should you fulfill the eligibility criteria, we will give you a call to understand your motivation and give you a quick confirmation. Your admission will be confirmed after reception of the payment.

The number of participants is limited to 15.

Application is closed.


The main topics cover 3 pillars: leadership, organizational design and strategic scaling.

A scalable business model:  
You already have a good business. Our initial work with you, in the interview and early sessions, will be understanding whether your business model is scalable, and whether we can help you and your venture.

Reconciling scalability and sustainability:  
Today should anyone create a product or service that is environmentally unfriendly? Is it acceptable to scale a firm without being sustainable? In this session we’ll explore how resilience, the UN SDGs and going beyond top-line growth are key for any company that expects to survive and prosper.

You, Your Team and Scaling:
It is unlikely that you can scale without growing your team with the right people, and without a structure and culture that is aligned with your scale-up ambitions. This is the CEO and the top team’s responsibility, not something you hand over to an HRM or a consultant. We’ll discuss how you build a scalable organization.

YOU - Leading to scale:  
Ultimately it will be the quality of your leadership that determines your venture’s success. You have been a great founder; are you the right person to lead a team that is scaling up fast?

Scaling for customers:  
It is good that you already have traction with some customers. In this session we’ll dive deep into understanding the value proposition that your target customers are seeking, and work on what international expansion should look like for your firm.

Designing a scalable supply chain:  
To get to where you are today you have likely cobbled together a supply chain that works well. For now. What can we do to assure that you have a supply chain that scales with you, and is resilient to shocks, whether they be due to a pandemic or geo-political issues?

Partnering for scale:
It is unlikely as a startup that you can or should be doing everything yourself. What do the best partnership practices look like? Which activities should you own, which should you control, and which should be done with a partner?

De-risking while scaling:  
Creating defendable barriers when you move into hyper-growth and you’re on every competitor’s radar screen! Can you build a moat around your firm and its product or technology?

Managing growth cashflow:  
Companies die when they run out of cash, no matter how good the tech is or how smart your founders are. Understanding how to raise capital ahead of a crisis, but keeping the cash outflows under control while still feeding growth, is essential.

Your scaling narrative:  
You had a great pitch when you started. It brought you your first employees, customers and investors. What is your story now?

Change leadership:  
It’s likely that something in our previous sessions will require change in your team, or even the need to help your customers change so that they can buy and use your product. In this session we’ll work on stakeholder management, influencing people that you have little power over, and understanding the psychology and process of change management, with you leading the change.

Exact order and dates will be communicated based on the speakers’ availability. Also, the final content will be dependent on the needs of the participants, learned through our interviews with you. Those topics are applicable to all industries. Should you have a doubt, don't hesitate to contact us!


  • Training with top IMD entrepreneurship professors
  • Access to a network of successful scale-ups and entrepreneurs
  • Practical case study with experts
  • Being part of a small community of ambitious founders
  • Certificate of completion recognized by Innovaud and IMD

Take your company to the next stage. Apply!

Next start and fees

The program starts in January 2022 and ends in June 2022.

Fees: CHF 9’900.-  
Special price for the first edition for Vaud companies:
CHF 4'950.- 
Upon completion you will receive an IMD scholarship voucher worth CHF 5'000.-

Contact us

Want to learn more about the LeadiNNg to Scale-up program?