Manfred Kets De Vries

Manfred Kets De Vries combines economics, management and psychoanalysis to study the dynamics of leadership and complex structures of organisations. An expert in behavioural analysis the academic can educate audiences on entrepreneurship, career dynamics and organising stress. A persuasive and engaging keynote speaker, he is a sure fire hit on the corporate circuit. 

Leadership and organisational behaviour expert Manfred Kets de Vries brings together the fields of Management and psychoanalysis effectively and persuasively. His pioneering research into executive stress and behaviour using psychoanalysis is internationally lauded and respected.

With the unique view of a psychoanalyst and the solid foundations of an academic economic background, he compounds international management, psychoanalysis, psychotherapy, and dynamic psychiatry.

In his 1984 book The Neurotic Organisation, Manfred and Danny Miller examined the relationship between personality, leadership, corporate culture and strategy. Following his work with over 40 further publications, including Organisations on the Couch and Struggling with the Demon, Manfred has established himself as one of the world’s most trusted authorities on business thinking through the eyes of a psychoanalyst.

With a finely-tuned focus on the employment of high-performance teams for healthy organizations, Manfred believes that many CEOs are obsessive and can be narcissistic, which is necessary to a degree in corporate life but can be damaging in excess. Manfred calls this constructive narcissism and offers practical strategies to curb and nurture different personality traits within senior levels of organisations.

The Distinguished Professor of Leadership Development and Organizational Change at INSEAD, Manfred founded the organisation’s Global Leadership Center, and is Program Director of INSEAD's top management program, ‘The Challenge of Leadership: Creating Reflective Leaders,’. He is also Scientific Director of the Executive Master’s Program ‘Consulting and Coaching for Change’, and has received INSEAD's distinguished teacher award five times.

With professorships at McGill University, the Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales, Montreal, the European School for Management and Technology, Berlin, and the Harvard Business School, Manfred’s international academic record is unparalleled.

Rated as one of world's leading leadership thinkers by the international press, Manfred is placed among the world’s top leading management thinkers and among the most influential contributors to human resource management.

Manfred’s life outside business and academia is full of adventure. He was the first fly fisherman in Outer Mongolia, a member of New York's Explorers Club, and a regular tourist in the rainforests or savannas of Central Africa, the Siberian taiga, the Pamir and Altai Mountains, Arnhemland, or within the Arctic Circle.

Speaking Topics:

  • Effective leadership
  • Organizational stress
  • Career dynamics
  • Entrepreneurship and family business
  • Cross-cultural management
  • The process of organizational transformation and change
  • The darker side of leadership
  • High performance teams and high performance organizations
  • Cross-cultural differences in leadership styles
  • Leadership derailment and its prevention
  • Relationships between leadership, corporate culture and strategic decision-making
  • Entrepreneurial leadership
  • Leadership and the career life cycle
  • Leadership audits
  • Creating executive role constellations
  • Psychodynamics of leadership transition

For further information or to book Manfred Kets De Vries, call us on +44 (0)20 7607 7070or email

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