Keynote speaker topics: Corporate leadership, strategy, innovation, competitiveness, extreme stakeholder alignment, the future of consulting, creating collaborative workplaces, the future of education innovation, the future of how we work, rethinking business through disruptive management, organisational design, education.
Best known for his radical form of industrial democracy and corporate re-engineering, Ricardo Semler is internationally recognised as a catalyst of change for employee-empowered leadership. When he became the CEO of his father's company, he re-organised it with the belief that less management and more flexibility meant a better workplace and bigger profits. Little did he know that his innovative business management policies would attract worldwide interest. Not only has Ricardo successfully transformed his organisation to adopt innovative management practices to advance leadership and organisational effectiveness; under his mentorship, companies from a spectrum of industries have reshaped their companies to be more dynamic, innovative and people-centric.
As the best-selling author of the classic Maverick and The Seven Day Weekend, Semler advocates for leadership to rewrite their corporate narratives to be driven by values of trust, self-management and creativity. Semler has reached thousands of international and corporate audiences through his guest lectures at MIT and Harvard and fostered a digital community of fans with his popular TED Talk: How to Run a Company with (almost) no rules and commentary and video shorts on social media.
Passionate about providing avenues of change for youth, Semler also spearheaded the Brazil-based Lumiar School which infuses radical corporate democracy into early education. Semler admits that his own company's management agreements are not for everyone (managers determine their salaries, staff choose their bosses), but it is a success. Semco is now a $400 million business with additional minority interests in companies that add up to $9 billion in market value.
Over the span of the last five years, Semler has helped reinvent several industries through his corporate innovation including: ETH, BrasilAgro, Tarpon Investimentos, Juritas and NGO. Ricardo encourages audiences to question ideas, to take a realistic look at what works, what’s possible, and what makes sense in today’s world, given our technologies, the rapid pace of change and the increasing failure of current practice to adapt. Technology that was supposed to make life easier laptops, cell phones, e-mail, pagers have taken away much of our free time and destroyed the traditional 9 to 5 workday. Why, for instance, haven't we learned to go golfing on Monday morning when we’ve learned to take our work home on Friday night?
For bold innovators, Semler proposes a way to run a workplace that leads to greater productivity and greater flexibility for managers and employees alike. And for business leaders everywhere, he offers fresh alternatives to business as usual that inspire creative solutions to modern management problems.
Named "Latin American Businessman of the Year" by America Economia (The Wall Street Journal's Spanish language magazine)
Vice President, Federation of Industries of Brazil
Board member, SOS Atlantic Forest, Brazil’s foremost environmental defense organization
Semco was selected by CIO magazine as the only Latin American company among the most successfully reengineered companies in the world
Professor of Leadership at MITs Sloan School of Management
Visiting Scholar at Harvard Law School
Harvard Business School alumnus
Thinkers 50 2005
The Seven Day Weekend
In the media:
The Big Company that has no Rules - Forbes
Business Leaders: Ricardo Semler - Startups
Forget Empowerment — Aim for Exhilaration - Management Exchange
Examining the Leadership of Ricardo Semler in Semco - UK Essays
Who's in charge here? No one- The Guardian
Why Every Employee Should Have Unlimited Vacation Days - The Huffington Post
Why 'Participation Age' Leaders Will Beat Old-School Managers, Every Time - INC. trends
Testimonial: 'After the workshop I spoke to some of the business relations that we had invited. They were positive without exception. Present were, among others, a partner of a large law firm, a company that offers HR services with the aid of self-developed software and a partner of an international recruitment and selection agency. They all asked questions about specific challenges in their companies and were amazed at Semler's knowledge of their specific business model and challenges. To be repeated!' Han Mesters, Sector Banker Business Services ABN AMRO Bank