“Xenia's ability to actively listen and distill the salient points is exceptional. Her perception, analysis and ability to reflect back accurately and concisely were determinative in my making a key decision about the direction of my career. As a result I made a clear choice, which was the right one, in a relatively short time. I only wish I needed her coaching services for longer as she is a pleasure to work with.”
- Lynne Mendelsohn, business owner & founding director of two NGOs
How I can help you
I help leaders make better decisions.
After a lengthy career in geopolitics and international strategy I’ve seen first-hand, and studied in-depth, the consequences of good and bad decision-making in some of the highest stake situations imaginable.
I now apply this experience to work with leaders to broaden their thinking, understanding and perspective around global geopolitics, political and ESG dynamics or about their own leadership and direction. I help them make smarter, more informed, and more confident decisions.
I have worked on both sides of the Atlantic in leaderships roles in the US White House, Harvard, Chatham House and Equinor. I’ve led on South Asia policy and helped set up homeland security after 9/11 for the US Government, run Harvard’s pre-eminent international affairs research centre, and launched a peacebuilding foundation in Switzerland and Chatham House’s Academy for Leadership. I’ve also sat on Equinor’s management team for global strategy and BD and led their geopolitics and integrity due diligence teams. I now run my own advisory business, Wickett Advisory.
I am a sought-after moderator, interviewer and speaker. Recent highlights include chairing and moderating discussions with Elon Musk, Ukrainian President Zelensky, and the CEOs of TotalEnergies and Equinor, and discussing the US midterms with Simon Schama and Ed Luce on stage at the FT Weekend Festival.
For my day job, I regularly advise senior business executives on the impact of geopolitics on their strategy and am often brought in to discuss geopolitical issues with business leaders and their clients. I also work one-to-one with senior leaders to hone their decision-making, stakeholder management and leadership skills particularly during times of transition, whether of themselves, their organisations or their broader environment.
"The range and quality of Xenia’s experience - and the relationships she has forged - are extraordinary. When you combine these with her judgement, humility and emotional intelligence, you can be sure that the perspective she offers will help join your dots in new and imaginative ways."
- Ali Griffiths, CMO Censornet
A little more about me…and why I decided to start a coaching and advisory business
I was born of South African and Hungarian parents yet I am British and American by nationality. (It’s a long story.)
I attended university in England (Oxford) and graduate school in the United States (Harvard).
Before I became a coach, I served in senior-level positions in business (Equinor), government (the White House), NGOs (PeaceNexus), think-tanks (Chatham House), and academia (Harvard Kennedy School's Belfer Center). I worked in, or closely with, many different cultural contexts, including the US, UK, Switzerland, Israel, India, and Norway.
Unsurprisingly, my somewhat eclectic background and broad international experience have played an outsized role in leading me to where I am today.
My multinational upbringing and education led me to pursue work focused on international affairs. And through that experience, I learned that bringing diverse perspectives to a problem set is key to finding lasting solutions to complex challenges.
I also realized that not only do I get enormous satisfaction from solving difficult problems, I get even more satisfaction from helping other people learn to solve their own problems thus building capacity. Few things are more fulfilling and make me happier than helping others grow and develop new capabilities and competencies, reach their potential, and achieve their goals.
That realization about what I love to do led me to launch a coaching and advisory business. More specifically, it’s a business based largely on using my understanding of the world and my experience with overcoming challenges to help people realize their potential and figure out where they want to go and how to get there in the most direct way possible.