"I'm excited by the possibilities!"
Ashka Wirk BSc (Bio), MBA, CMC, ACC
Architect. Builder. Crystal Gazer.
Profile Interview Blog
Ashka Wirk is the Strategy Practice Lead and a senior management consultant with Berlineaton and is passionate about the thorough planning, deep engagement, superior execution, and above all – thoughtful leadership required to ensure meaningful, long-term success of any organizational vision. Ashka leads Berlineaton’s contribution to many client engagements in our Strategy Development and Execution Practice, specializing in the technology, health care, and education sectors. 

Ashka brings a disciplined, engaging and evidence-based approach to improving organizational effectiveness, drawing on her extensive and varied background in the fields of science and business.

Since joining Berlineaton, Ashka has led several strategy development and execution engagements.  She has co-led the development of an all-girls’ school strategy, including leading the design, administration and analysis of a 750-constituent survey and co-leading an Open Space Conference.  She has also been a lead consultant on two health-related projects focused on improving surgical wait times, and another on improving the organizational effectiveness of a large, healthcare regulatory body.

Ashka holds a BSc in biology from UBC and an MBA from the Schulich School of Business.  Prior to joining Berlineaton in 2014, she led the consulting subsidiary of StemCell Technologies – the largest biotechnology company in Canada. As Executive Director, then CEO, she led several international healthcare associations, and brought a particular focus and strength in developing and fostering strategic relationships and collaborations between healthcare professionals and private sector healthcare to improve delivery and outcomes, and to change the lives of patients.   

She is most proud of facilitating a major change initiative that fundamentally improved the traditional client-service provider relationship into a true partnership between the firm and its clients, ensuring the long term sustainability of all parties. 

As Strategy Practice Lead with Berlineaton, Ashka leverages her knowledge, experience and passion in the field of business strategy to help clients ‘blueprint’ bolder futures for their organizations.

Ashka is a proud soccer/hockey/martial arts-mom to her two young children.  She likes to spin and run, gardens to relax, and aspires to be the next MasterChef.

Q and A with Ashka Wirk

Q. What is your favourite client success story?

There is no way I can come up with one favourite client success story. There is certainly a common element that contributed to each of my favourite client success stories:  people from different levels, different disciplines, and different backgrounds coming together with a common purpose: to find a solution, define their direction, and move their organizations or their entire fields forward. In biomedical research they call this convergence. At Berlineaton, it is fundamental to our approach.

Q. Who do you admire as someone who contributes actively towards creating “a world of courageous endeavours?”

I admire entrepreneurs wherever they may be – and I have seen them everywhere: in government, research labs, educational institutions, and in business. Their can-do, will-do, must-do spirit is infectious and inspiring.   
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Q and A with Ashka Wirk

Q. What is your favourite client success story?

There is no way I can come up with one favourite client success story. There is certainly a common element that contributed to each of my favourite client success stories: people from different levels, different disciplines, and different backgrounds coming together with a common purpose: to find a solution, define their direction, and move their organizations or their entire fields forward. In biomedical research they call this convergence. At Berlineaton, it is fundamental to our approach.   

Q. Who do you admire as someone who contributes actively towards creating “a world of courageous endeavours?”

I admire entrepreneurs wherever they may be – and I have seen them everywhere: in government, research labs, educational institutions, and in business. Their can-do, will-do, must-do spirit is infectious and inspiring.            
               
Q. As a child, what did you 'want to be' when you grew up?

What didn't I want to be is a better question for me!

My first recollection of what I wanted to be was an artist – until my dad said that “artists starve.” In my five-year-old mind, I took that quite literally and quickly abandoned the idea.

When I was in elementary school, I wanted to be a teacher – because I was in love with my teachers. The passion for learning that they instilled in me is deeply ingrained. In high school, I wanted to be a doctor because I adored science and wanted to pursue a career where I had the opportunity to help people.

When I moved away from home for my undergraduate degree, I started thinking about a career in business. Everyone who I looked up to – my mom, my dad, my grandfather – all had their own businesses. This gave me the impetus to pursue an MBA and eventually a career in consulting.

Consulting ticks all of the boxes that were important to me as I thought about a career while growing up: to be creative, to guide and support, and to help people.

Q. When you bump into someone from high school, how do you explain what you do in your work at Berlineaton?

I tell them that I am a management consultant and that I help organizations develop their strategy – to get from where they are to where they want to be. 
  
Q. What is the scariest thing you’ve ever done?  

The scariest thing that I have ever done is to have children. It is the most selfish and the most selfless thing that I have ever done. It is the hardest and the most rewarding thing that I have ever done.

Q. Rock concert, jazz festival, school play or something entirely different?

A really good movie at home with family or close friends.

Q. What is your favourite quote?

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it's the only thing that ever has." Margaret Mead 
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