Women in Architecture Spotlight – Whynde Kuehn

Featured in this week’s spotlight is Whynde Kuehn, Founder and Managing Director of S2E Transformation.

Whynde is recognized globally as a highly sought-after pioneer, thought leader, and educator in business architecture, with a distinguished track record of creating successful strategic business architecture teams worldwide. She has worked with an extensive array of organizations to build their capacity for end-to-end strategy execution, including Fortune 500 and global enterprises, governmental and non-profit organizations, social enterprises, startups, and cross-sector initiatives. Whynde is creator of the Biz Arch Mastery online platform and community, a co-founder of the Business Architecture Guild, author of the book Strategy to Reality, and Chair of the Women In Architecture (WIA) global initiative.

Question: How did you get your start in the industry?

Answer: I studied science and sustainability, so by accident or by destiny I ended up working in business and in architecture. I started out in a business architect job (and a 3-month temporary one at that), but one thing led to another, and that job became a career, which then evolved into a life’s work for me to serve a global vision and community around business architecture and end-to-end strategy execution.

Q: What is your current responsibility and what is your typical day like?

A: My main focus is delivering business architecture and strategy execution education and hands-on coaching programs as well as providing advisory and consulting to clients.  Alongside this, I also focus on thought leadership (writing and speaking) and causes that are important to me (the Women In Architecture global initiative, the Business Architecture Guild professional association, and non-profits I work with around sustainability and poverty alleviation).

In our digital world, I do a lot of my work remotely from Norway, but I do travel frequently as well.

This all means that my days vary widely, so the only thing typical about any day is that it will be passion-filled!

Q: What do you like most about your job?

A: I love being at the forefront of change with strategy and transformation.  As architects, we literally help to create the organizations, societies, and world of our future.

This chapter of my career is also very much about shaping the future of the discipline and lifting up the next generation.  I love pioneering new ideas to push the boundaries, advocating for business architecture to executive and academic audiences, and working alongside individuals to build their business architecture careers and organizations to build their strategic business architecture practices.

I also love that I have the opportunity to work globally with colleagues, clients, and communities from Australia and New Zealand to EMEA to North and South America.

Q: What trends in architecture are you looking out for the rest of 2023 and 2024?

A: The continued shift towards leveraging enterprise architecture within a strategic context as a critical enabler of strategy execution, working in business ecosystems, and designing for sustainability and circularity.

Q: What is one thing we can do to support or increase the women in architecture?

A: One of the greatest ways to create impact is to be intentional.  This can include anything from being intentional about broadening the hiring pool for your team or the speaker invitation list for your event – to making space to allow women to engage in natural ways in meetings and inviting their perspectives – to personally reaching out to encourage a woman in architecture (either current or aspiring).