Allison Akhnoukh | Chief of Staff
As our Chief of Staff, Allison creates systems that help 2Rev grow its impact without losing our innovative, entrepreneurial culture and spirit. Her work focuses on connecting dots and making sure we’re moving in the direction of where we want to go. In her role she gets to spend time thinking about how 2Rev can scale its work in support of a radically better and more relevant education system than the one we have today.
Before joining 2Rev, Allison was the founding CEO of Caliber Schools, a Bay Area-based next generation charter management organization. Previously, she worked for the Knowledge is Power Program (KIPP) Foundation, where she supported the growth and sustainability of KIPP regions across the country. Prior to this work, Allison served as Director of School Portfolio Management for Oakland Unified School District and Director of Development for Epiphany Middle School in Dorchester, MA. Allison received a bachelor’s degree in philosophy from Dartmouth College and an MBA from Harvard Business School, where she performed initial research for the book Disrupting Class by Clay Christensen and Michael Horn. She is also a graduate of the Broad Residency in Urban Education.
You're the operations champ at 2Rev. How do system-level decisions within an organization inhibit or enable success?
In a rapidly growing organization, the line between failing to invest in the systems necessary for scale and becoming overly burdened by process is razor thin. It is absolutely critical to strike the right balance. As a firm built on a commitment to creativity and innovation, this balance is all the more important to our efforts. We are constantly asking ourselves: Does this new system help or hinder our growth and the quality of our offerings? In a period of scale, you need to have the confidence and commitment to wholly embrace those systems that are in support of your efforts and immediately abandon those which are not.
What have been some of the most important choices 2Rev has made so far?
At 2Rev, we really emphasize practicing the same approaches we use with educators and teams during their innovative design work, and short-cycle prototyping is one model of this. We refuse to invest in anything at scale that we haven't first prototyped and assessed for impact. The greatest example of this is our approach to talent. Anyone who joins the 2Rev team full-time first spends a period of time in our "Talent Cloud" so that we can try each other on for fit. This approach has resulted in an alignment with regards to culture and vision that is a critical foundation of our success as a firm. Beyond just talent, our short-cycle prototyping approach permeates all of our growth efforts to date--from Version 1.0 of our InspirED platform down to how we build our project budgets, we believe in continual cycles of lean investments, assessment for success and smart improvements.