Warren Bennis

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Warren G. Bennis
Born March 8, 1928 (1928-03-08) (age 81)
New York City, New York
Occupation President, University of Cincinnati
University Professor, Distinguished Professor, Business Administration, University of Southern California
Consultant, Werner Erhard and Associates
Chairman, BOD, Harvard University Kennedy School of Government Center for Public Leadership
Spouse(s) Clurie Williams Bennis, (m. 1962, div. 1980), Mary Jane O'Donnell, (m. March 8, 1988, div.1991)
Grace Gabe (m. November 29, 1992)
Children Katharine Bennis, John Leslie Bennis, Will Martin Bennis

Warren Gamaliel Bennis (born March 8, 1925) is an American scholar, organizational consultant and author, widely regarded as a pioneer of the contemporary field of Leadership Studies. [1] [2] Bennis is University Professor and Distinguished Professor of Business Administration and Founding Chairman of The Leadership Institute at the University of Southern California. [3]

“His work at MIT in the 1960s on group behavior foreshadowed -- and helped bring about -- today's headlong plunge into less hierarchical, more democratic and adaptive institutions, private and public,” management expert Tom Peters wrote in 1993 in the foreword to Bennis’ An Invented Life: Reflections on Leadership and Change. [1]

Management expert James O’Toole, in a 2005 issue of Compass, published by Harvard University’s John F. Kennedy School of Government, claimed that Bennis developed “an interest in a then-nonexistent field that he would ultimately make his own -- leadership -- with the publication of his ‘Revisionist Theory of Leadership’ in Harvard Business Review in 1961.” [4] O’Toole observed that Bennis challenged the prevailing wisdom by showing that humanistic, democratic-style leaders better suited to dealing with the complexity and change that characterize the leadership environment. [5]


[edit] Military Service & Education

Bennis grew up within a working-class Jewish family in Westwood, New Jersey, before enlisting in 1943 in the United States Army. He would go on to serve as one of the Army’s youngest infantry officers in the European theater of operations, and was awarded the Purple Heart and Bronze Star. [6]

He enrolled in Antioch College in 1947 following his military service. Antioch president Douglas McGregor, considered one of the founders of the modern democratic management philosophy, would take on Bennis as a protégé, a scholarly relationship that would prove fruitful when both later served as professors at the MIT Sloan School of Management. [There, Bennis would hold the post of chairman of the Organizational Studies Department.] [7]

[edit] Career

Within the area of management, Bennis sought to move from theory to practice in 1967, taking the post of provost of the State University of New York at Buffalo and the presidency of the University of Cincinnati in 1971. He authored two books on leadership during his presidency: The Leaning Ivory Tower, 1973, and The Unconscious Conspiracy: Why Leaders Can’t Lead, 1976. [8]

Bennis chose to return to the life of a teacher, consultant and author following a heart attack in 1979, joining the faculty of the University of Southern California. Most of the best-known of his 27 books followed, including the bestselling Leaders and On Becoming A Leader, both translated into 21 languages. [9] An Invented Life was nominated for a Pulitzer Prize. More recent books, Organizing Genius, 1997, Co-Leaders, 1999, and Managing The Dream, 2000, summarize Bennis’s interests in leadership, judgment, organizational change and creative collaboration. Geeks & Geezers, 2002, examines the differences and similarities between leaders thirty years and younger and leaders seventy years and older.[5][2]

Bennis spent time as an adviser to four United States presidents and several other public figures, and has also consulted for numerous FORTUNE 500 companies. [10]

He has also spent time on the faculties of Harvard and Boston University and taught at the Indian Institute of Management-Calcutta, INSEAD and IMD. In addition to his current posts at USC, Bennis serves as chairman of the Advisory Board of the Center for Public Leadership at Harvard University’s Kennedy School. He is a visiting professor of leadership at the University of Exeter (UK) and a senior fellow at UCLA’s School of Public Policy and Social Research.

[edit] Impact

Bennis’ impact on the fields of leadership and management theory is significant. The Wall Street Journal named him as one of the top ten speakers on management in 1993; Forbes magazine referred to him as the “dean of leadership gurus” in 1996. The Financial Times referred to Bennis in 2000 as “the professor who established leadership as a respectable academic field.” [11]

Bennis has been ranked as one of the top 30 Leadership professionals in the international Leadership Gurus survey for 2008. The “Leadership Gurus survey” award, by Global Gurus International identifies the top and most influential Leadership professionals in the world by merit and public voting.

[edit] EST

Warren Bennis took the est Training in London, in 1979.

...Bennis took the est training in 1979 in London: "It gave me a good sense of who I was at a critical period in my life. I had just ended my time as university president, and I was looking around for new directions."[12]

[edit] Associated Publications

[edit] References

  1. ^ a b Center for Public Leadership, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Fall 2005
  2. ^ a b Center for Excellence in Teaching, University of Southern California
  3. ^ USC Experts Directory, University of Southern California
  4. ^ Bennis, W.G. (1961), "Revisionist theory of leadership", Harvard Business Review, Vol. 39
  5. ^ a b Center for Public Leadership, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Fall 2005
  6. ^ Bennis, Warren, "Managing the Dream," Chapter 16, pages 195-199, Perseus Publishing, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2000
  7. ^ [ennis, Warren, "Managing the Dream," Chapter 16, pages 199-211, Perseus Publishing, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2000
  8. ^ Bennis, Warren, "Managing the Dream," Chapter 16, pages 204-226, Perseus Publishing, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2000
  9. ^ [Bennis, Warren, "Managing the Dream," Chapter 16, pages 212-226], Perseus Publishing, Cambridge, Massachusetts, 2000
  10. ^ Center for Excellence in Teaching, University of Southern California
  11. ^ Center for Public Leadership, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University, Fall 2005
  12. ^ The Return of Werner Erhard: Guru II, Los Angeles Magazine, May, 1988, Vol 33; No 5; Sec 1; pg 106, Mark MacNamara, San Francisco, CA

[edit] Bibliography

  • 'Beyond Bureaucracy: Essays on the Development and Evolution of Human Organization'
  • 'Beyond Counterfeit Leadership: How You Can Become a More Authentic Leader'
  • 'Beyond Leadership: Balancing Economics, Ethics and Ecology' (ISBN 155786960X)
  • 'Co-Leaders: The Power of Great Partnerships'
  • 'Geeks & Geezers : How Era, Values, and Defining Moments Shape Leaders' (ISBN 1578515823)
  • 'Leaders: Strategies for Taking Charge' (ISBN 0887308392)
  • 'Managing People Is Like Herding Cats: Warren Bennis on Leadership' (ISBN 096349175X)
  • 'Managing the Dream: Reflections on Leadership and Change' (ISBN 0738203327)
  • 'On Becoming a Leader' (ISBN 0738208175)
  • 'Organizing Genius: The Secrets of Creative Collaboration' (ISBN 0201570513)
  • 'Reinventing Leadership: Strategies to Empower the Organization' (ISBN 9780060820527)
  • 'The Leaning Ivory Tower' (ISBN 0875891578)
  • 'The Planning of Change' (ISBN 0030895189)
  • 'The Unreality Industry: The Deliberate Manufacturing of Falsehood and What It Is Doing to Our Lives '
  • 'Visionary Leadership: Creating a Compelling Sense of Direction for Your Organization'
  • 'Why Leaders Can't Lead: The Unconscious Conspiracy Continues' (ISBN 1555421520)

[edit] External links

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