Manfred F.R. Kets de Vries (born 1942 in The Netherlands) is a clinical professor of leadership development at INSEAD, where he holds the Raoul de Vitry d'Avaucourt Chair of Leadership Development. He is the founder of INSEAD's Global Leadership Centre, program director of INSEAD's top management seminar, "The Challenge of Leadership: Creating Reflective Leaders" and the scientific director of the program "Consulting and Coaching for Change; Executive Master's Program", and has received five times, INSEAD's distinguished teacher award. With ESMT, Berlin he is a Distinguished Visiting Professor and Director of their Center for Leadership Development Research. He is best known for bringing a different view to the much-studied subjects of leadership and the dynamics of individual and organizational change. Prof. Kets de Vries is also the founder of the Kets de Vries Institute, a partnership that counsels individual CEOs and top executive teams, using a clinical orientation to leadership coaching and organizational transformation.
Kets de Vries had held professorships at McGill University, the École des Hautes Études Commerciales, Montreal, and Harvard Business School, and has lectured at management institutions around the world. He is a founding member of the International Society for the Psychoanalytic Study of Organizations. The Financial Times, Le Capital, Wirtschaftswoche, and The Economist have rated Manfred Kets de Vries among the world's top fifty leading management thinkers and among the most influential contributors to human resource management. In 2005, as the first non-American, he has received the International Leadership Award for "his contributions to the classroom and the board room" . In 2008, he has also been given the Lifetime Achievement Award (the Leadership Legacy Project of the International Leadership Association), being viewed as one of the world’s six founding professionals in the development of leadership as a field and discipline. In October 2011 Kets de Vries was awarded the Doctor Honoris Causa title from IEDC Bled School of Management for his ‘outstanding contribution to creation and integration of knowledge and leadership development for a better world'.
Degrees and training
Professor Kets de Vries holds a Dutch Master degree in Economics (Econ. Drs.; 1966) from the University of Amsterdam; an International Teachers Program certificate (1967), M.B.A. (1968), and D.B.A. (1970) from Harvard Business School, and received training from the Canadian Psychoanalytic Society (member in 1982). He is also a member of the International Psychoanalytic Association and a corresponding member of Paris Psychoanalytical Society.
The Dutch government has made him an Officer in the Order of Orange-Nassau. He was the first fly fisherman in Outer Mongolia and is a member of New York's Explorers Club. He is the Chairman and principal owner of the Kets de Vries Institute, a global leadership consultancy firm, incorporated in 2009.
He is the author, co-author, or editor of more than thirty-five books and has published over 300 scientific papers as chapters in books and as articles. His books and articles have been translated into thirty-one languages. He is a member of seventeen editorial boards. He has been elected a Fellow of the Academy of Management. The American Psychological Association awarded him the Harry and Miriam Levinson Award (Organizational Consultation division) (in 2001) for his contributions to the field of consultation. He is a founding member of the International Society for the Psychoanalytic Study of Organizations (ISPSO) of which he became (in 2009) a Lifetime Distinguished Member. Kets de Vries is also the first non-American recipient of the International Leadership Award for “his contributions to the classroom and the board room” by the International Leadership Association (ILA). In 2010 he was honoured by the Dutch Psychoanalytic Institute in Holland where he was presented with the Freud Memorial Award, in acknowledgement of his exceptional work on the interface between psychoanalysis and organisations. He has also written approximately a hundred case studies, including seven that received the Best Case of the Year award. He is a regular writer for a number of magazines.
Most notable publications by Kets de Vries were his books 'Sex, Money, Happiness, and Death: The Quest for Authenticity' (2009) 'The Leader on the Couch,' (2006), 'The leadership Mystique' (2001), 'Organizations on the Couch' (1991) and 'The Neurotic Organization' (1984; together with Danny Miller), a trilogy which encompasses his seminal work on leadership from the past decade; 'Reflections on Character and Leadership', 'Reflections on Leadership and Career', and 'Reflections on Groups and Organisations', and most recently 'The Hedgehog Effect: The Secrets of Building High Performance Teams' (November 2011). Kets de Vries has developed four 360° Leadership Assessment instruments: "The Personality Audit", "Leadership Archetype Questionnaire", "Inner Theatre Inventory", and the "Organizational Culture Audit".
- Kets de Vries, Manfred F. R. & Carlock, Randel, with Elizabeth Florent-Treacy (2007). Family Business on the Couch: A Psychological Perspective, John Wiley & Sons Ltd., West Sussex, UK.
- Kets de Vries, Manfred F. R. (2009). Reflections on Character and Leadership: On the Couch with Manfred Kets de Vries, John Wiley & Sons Ltd, March 2009
- Kets de Vries, Manfred F. R. & Konstantin Korotov (2009). Leadership Development (editors), London: Edward Elgar. Forthcoming 2011
- Kets de Vries, Manfred F. R. Reflections on Leadership and Career Development, John Wiley & Sons Ltd, UK. (December 2009).
- Kets de Vries, Manfred F. R., Laura Guillen, Konstantin Korotov & Elizabeth Florent-Treacy (editors) The Coaching Kaleidoscope: Insights from the Inside, Palgrave Macmillan, Hampshire, UK.(July 2010).
- Kets de Vries, Manfred F. R. (January 2011) Reflections on Groups and Organisations. John Wiley & Sons Ltd., UK.
- Kets de Vries, Manfred F. R. (November 2011) The Hedgehog Effect: The Secrets of Building High Performance Teams. John Wiley & Sons Ltd., UK
Kets de Vries is a consultant on organizational design/transformation and strategic human resource management to leading U.S., Canadian, European, African, and Asian companies. As an educator and consultant he has worked in more than forty countries.
- Narcissistic leadership
- Kets de Vries - 2009, recognized as one of the world's most influential thinkers by Thinkers 50.