Henry Mintzberg to receive Thinkers50 Lifetime Achievement Award


Published: 1Oct2015

Thinkers50, the premier ranking of global business thinkers, today announced that Henry Mintzberg is to be the recipient of its 2015 Lifetime Achievement Award – previously won by Charles Handy and Ikujiro Nonaka.

“The Lifetime Achievement Award is given to someone who has had a long-term impact on the way people think about and practice management,” explains Thinkers50 co-founder Des Dearlove.  “Henry Mintzberg has done that and much more.  He has been an intellectual trailblazer from his very first book – The Nature of Managerial Work – to his work on strategy and his pioneering executive education programs.”

Henry Mintzberg graduated in Mechanical Engineering from McGill University in Montreal in 1961. He worked in Operational Research at the Canadian National Railways, and then received a masters and doctorate from the MIT Sloan School of Management in Boston. In 1968, he returned to McGill, where he joined what is now the Desautels Faculty of Management where he is the Cleghorn Professor of Management Studies. 

“What a lovely honor! Ever since Stuart and I first met—at Heathrow Airport, in 1997  to be interviewed for the initial edition of Stuart and Des’s book about business thinkers — I have tried to be true to the answer I gave to one of his questions. He asked about the competition in this guru business, and I blurted out in my jet-lagged stupor, that I never felt that competition. ‘I never set out to be the best. It’s too low a standard. I set out to be good’. It is so nice to be recognized for being good!”

Henry Mintzberg’s books include The Nature of Managerial Work, Mintzberg on Management, The Rise and Fall of Strategic Planning, Simply Managing, and, most recently, Rebalancing Society.

“We have interviewed Henry many times since he was described as the enfant terrible of the strategy world and he is never short of an informed and interesting opinion,” says Thinkers50’s Stuart Crainer.  “But these opinions are always founded on deep research.  He has swum against the tide – such as with his views on MBA programs and directly examining what managers spend their time doing – but has usually been proved right.”

Henry Mintzberg will receive his award at the Thinkers50 awards evening on 9 November 2015 at Drapers’ Hall in London at an event which will be attended by management thinkers from throughout the world.   Throughout October Thinkers50 will be highlighting Mintzberg’s work.

About Thinkers50

Thinkers50 scans, ranks and shares the very best in management ideas. Its definitive global ranking of management thinkers is published every two years. The 2013 winner was Professor Clayton Christensen of Harvard Business School.  Previous winners include CK Prahalad (2009 and 2007); Michael Porter (2005) and Peter Drucker (2001 and 2003).

Thinkers50 2015 sponsors include Fujitsu, Speakers Associates, the European Leadership University, the European Centre for Strategic Innovation, and Talent Quarterly.  Thinkers50 affiliates now cover the world and include the Nordic Business Forum, The Growth Faculty (Australia), India’s Institute for Competitiveness and MCT (Turkey).