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Julian Birkinshaw

travels from UK

University Professor, Consultant and Author

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About Julian

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Our keynote speaker Julian Birkinshaw is a highly recognised expert in the field of strategy and organisation of large multinational corporations. He is the successful author of twelve books and over eighty articles. Julian can give charismatic insight into the world of business.

A top global thinker in the field of Management

Julian is Professor and Chair of Strategy and Entrepreneurship at the London Business School. During his academic career he achieved a PhD and MBA degrees in Business from the Richard Ivey School of Business, University of Western Ontario, and a BSc (Hons) from the University of Durham. He was awarded an Honorary Doctorate by the Stockholm School of Economics, 2009.

His area of expertise is in the strategy and organisation of large, multinational corporations. Specifically, he focuses on headquarters relationships, corporate entrepreneurship, innovation, the changing role of the corporate HQ, organisation design, and knowledge management.

In 2013, he was awarded one of the top 50 thinkers in the field of Management. Julian is a highly competent speaker when it comes to business related topics. With a variety of different issues concerned with strategy, innovation, change and leadership he feels like a fish in the water.

He is regularly quoted in the media and speaks at business conferences in the UK, Europe, North America and Australia.

See keynotes with Julian Birkinshaw

    Keynote by Speaker Julian Birkinshaw

    Building organisations fit for the future / Achieiving strategic agility / Reinventing management

    • Most large companies today operate according to an industrial-era logic of standardised rules, top-down accountability and narrow performance measures. In this talk, Julian Birkinshaw  shows how we can challenge these principles and develop new ways of working that enable innovation, agility and employee engagement.


    Keynote by Speaker Julian Birkinshaw

    Innovation: Creating an environment in which new ideas can flourish

    • To succeed in today’s fast-paced world, innovation is a key strategic imperative. In this talk, Julian Birkinsaw describes the key principles of innovation, and also the practical steps companies can take to put these principles into action.


    Keynote by Speaker Julian Birkinshaw

    New sources of competitive advantage in the post-knowledge era

    • We live in the knowledge era, where the capacity to manage information and knowledge is what marks out successful companies from also-rans. But what does the future hold? What happens as information and knowledge become shared and commoditised? In this talk, Julian Birkinshaw describes his thoughts about the sources of advantage in the post-knowledge era, and how companies will need to organise and manage themselves to address these sources of advantage.


    Keynote by Speaker Julian Birkinshaw

    Becoming a better boss

    • Most of us have a sense of what “good management” looks like – it is about developing clear objectives, providing  space and support for employees, and giving them praise and encouragement along the way. But there is a big gap between the “rhetoric” and the “reality” of good  management. In this talk, Julian Birkinshaw provides a new way of thinking about these issues, and provides  practical advice on how we can all become more effective as bosses of others.

Interview with Julian Birkinshaw

How do you prepare for your speaking engagements?

Well it depends a lot on the client! Sometimes my talks are based directly on my latest books/articles, and the job is simply to deliver those ideas in a clear and interesting way. But often a client has a specific need, so I work with them, often through several calls/meetings, to create some tailored content that directly addresses that need. Often this also involves creating interactive sessions, break-outs, or discussion forums.

One of your core topics is strategy of large multinational corporations, why is strategy an interesting topic?

Strategy is simply a way of expressing how and where a company competes – it is about helping a company to deliver on its vision.   So for anyone in a position of seniority in their company, a discussion of  strategy is vital. There are many examples out there, from Kodak to Nokia to Tesco, of companies who lost their way. My work is about helping companies to understand what they need to do to avoid falling into the traps that befell these companies.

In 2013, you were rewarded to be one of the top 50 thinkers in the field of Management. What makes you one of those?

Yes good question! There was a panel of experts who evaluated hundreds of “thinkers”, looking at their recent books and articles, and there was also a democratic component where people wrote in and voted. But the exact decision process remains a black box!

What do you gain personally from being a public speaker?

I enjoy getting important and often tricky ideas across in an accessible and engaging way. I also like to provoke and challenge audiences, by sharing my latest  thinking with them. And I learn from the audiences all the time, through their questions and their observations.

Can you provide three tips how to become a better boss?

Your job as a “boss” is to get things done through the people who work for you. So for me a good boss is someone who enables their employees to do their best work. The three tips I would offer are:

  • See the world through your employees’ eyes – remind yourself, all the time, what their needs/expectations are, and how you can help them do their job better
  • Become more conscious and thoughtful about your own biases and weaknesses, and find ways of mitigating them (perhaps by making sure colleagues take on those parts of your job you are not very good at), and
  • Learn how to focus your time and attention on the highest value-adding tasks on your agenda, rather than allowing your time to be fragmented and taken up by the agendas of others.
See keynotes with Julian Birkinshaw
Non-binding request for Julian Birkinshaw

Send a simple request. You’ll get a quick reply with fees and availability

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Keynote topics with Julian Birkinshaw