About Ken

Few people have influenced the day-to-day management of people and companies more than Ken Blanchard. A prominent, sought-after author, speaker, and business consultant, Dr. Blanchard is universally characterized by his friends, colleagues, and clients as one of the most insightful, powerful, and compassionate individuals in business today. Ken is one of the most influential leadership experts in the world and is respected for his years of groundbreaking work in the fields of leadership and management.

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Q & A WITH KEN

Q.  How did you get involved in leadership, and what motivates you to continue?

My involvement in leadership began in the 1960s, when I was an assistant dean at Ohio University. The chairman of the management department, Dr. Paul Hersey, asked me if I would be interested in writing a textbook with him. That book became Management of Organizational Behavior. It introduced Situational Leadership®, a whole new way of looking at management. Now in its 10th edition, the book has been a bestseller in the field for over 40 years.

When I was on sabbatical in the late 1970s, I gave a speech—“Different Strokes for Different Folks”—at a Young Presidents Organization event. People were so excited about it that they insisted my wife, Margie, and I start our own management consulting company. We went from not knowing how to balance our own checkbook in 1979 to running a company that today has more than 300 employees and offices around the world.

In 1982, the book I wrote with Spencer Johnson, The One Minute Manager®, was published and went on to sell more than 13 million copies. I guess you could say that book was a trendsetter, because it was the first well-known business parable, a format that is still quite popular today.

What keeps me motivated to continue is that I believe the world is in desperate need of a different leadership role model. When you look at leaders around the world—whether they’re running departments or countries, businesses or religious institutions—you see too many people focusing on self-serving goals. We need a new leadership model that focuses not only on goal accomplishment, but also on the greater good.

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