About Sophia Liu                            HYSTA Testimonials                            Blog

About Sophia Liu

Sophia Liu is a Business Consultant and Certified Business Coach, also does executive coaching. Her passion is to maximize her clients' professional and personal success by partnering with them to "life-strategize", and help them find the sweet spot where their business or professional careers complement their personal life.

For more than a decade, Ms. Sophia enjoyed a highly successful career in the areas of sales, engineering, business development, and management. She has helped develop high-technology products at Global 500 companies, as well as having worked with small enterprises. As the Executive Director, she was instrumental in elevating HYSTA from a relatively small and unknown association to the premier Chinese professional organization in the San Francisco Bay Area. She created and organized HYSTA's very first executive summit meeting where a billion $$$ deal was achieved between Yahoo and China's Alibaba, which has become the most successful American investment in China to date. She orchestrated the HYSTA annual conference 2006 that received national media coverage from ABC News Video. (Testimonials from HYSTA here).

Later she worked as a Vice President in the investment banking industry; her professional expertise has expanded to include Mergers & Acquisitions and capital raising advisory services.

Sophia first realized the needs of balancing work-life while working at HYSTA. Initially, she did not mind working 15 - 18 hours daily, 360 days a year, including weekends and holidays. She thrived on the challenges of her job, working until 2 am after midnight every day.

However, her hectic lifestyle began to change due to a single, seminal moment. While she was working at her desk at her home office in the late afternoon, her 9-year-old son often knocked her door, came to her, and asked her to play with him. She asked him to wait for a "moment". As days went by, her son still came and pushed the door ajar, but instead of asking her to play, he would say:"Oh oh! Mommy is tending her flower garden" (which is the homophones of HYSTA in Chinese). Then he closed the door and walked away quietly. One day, she turned around. Her door was shut and she realized her son had stopped coming to her. That was the moment of revelation. She asked herself:"What am I chasing after? What am I chasing away? Does my career have to overshadow my personal life? Furthermore, is it possible to thrive in both?"

That was it. She left HYSTA, and she was satisfied. She scaled back her workload, and found time for her son, and herself. She has been dancing ballet for over 15 years. Soon thereafter, she found opportunities to take hip hop class, Chinese dance class, swimming class, singing class, and performed singing at local theaters regularly. Also she invested time and money into her personal growth. Five years ago, she formed a hiking group and hiked weekly. By practicing "helping myself by helping others", she reached out to the public and started her book club endeavors. As a result, she not only met some amazing people in her life, but also learned valuable life lessons. In year 2009, she founded Ivy Business Institute which aims to provide enrichment workshops in leadership, work-life balance, time-management, goal setting, mission statement, communications, image building and culture understanding to the professional population in the Silicon Valley.

Sophia no longer relied on her job or business to validate her worth. She had also learned during those years what character and skill sets are necessary to help achieve a high-level of personal success.

Having gone through the work-life balancing process herself, and enjoying the positive impact it has brought on her life, Sophia understands the predicament many successful professionals are facing. Her coaching strategy is to help them define what success means to them personally, and guide them along the path to achieving work-life balance.

Sophia graduated with distinction from the Beijing University of Aeronautics and earned a master's degree from the University of Santa Clara. She has earned numerous academic awards, including Beijing City Excellent Student Leadership awards at high school graduation, and scholarships from Beijing University of Aeronautics. Ms. Liu holds Series 7 and 63 securities licenses. She has spoken at local conventions in dealing with M&A and cross border related business advisory services.

Sophia serves as a marketing director and board member at Chinese Performing Arts of America (CPAA), a non-profit organization to present high quality culture performances to the general public. She played a key role in organizing the 1st Silicon Valley International Dance Competition in January 2011.

HYSTA Testimonials

"We worked together very closely last year. Not sure if I told you before, but it was truly my pleasure to work with you. You had made my job so easy. Now it is time for me to personally say thank you. You have contributed so much to HYSTA's pass success. Your passion and dedication to HYSTA not only impressed but also inspired me and a lot of us volunteers. We are all proud of you."
- Feng Deng, Founding Managing Director, Northern Light Venture Capital. Co-Founder, NetScreen Technologies

"Your contribution to HYSTA is a legacy, and its impact will last. I cannot say enough how much you have changed HYSTA for good; It's a privilege that HYSTA had you at the helm to drive its day-2-day grass roots effort. It's a pleasure that I get to know you and work with you in the past."
- Qi Lu, President, Online Services Division, Microsoft

"Many thanks for what you have done for HYSTA!"
- Min Zhu, Co-Founder and Former President of WebEx

"Sophia worked in many capacities and recruited many talented volunteers to help HYSTA's growth. On behalf of the HYSTA board, management team and the volunteers, we THANK YOU for a job well done! Your effort and dedication have born fruits across both sides of the Pacific Ocean. "
- Jack Jia, Founder, Baynote, Inc. Advisor, GSR Ventures

"Sophia, it has been a pleasure working with you. We could not have done this without you."
- Yibo Shao, Founder & CEO of EachNet (Later became eBay China)

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