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Jonas  Ridderstrale

Jonas Ridderstrale

Management Expert & Author

Jonas Ridderstrale

Management Expert & Author


One of the world’s most influential and respected business thinkers, Dr. Jonas Ridderstråle burst onto the international scene with his bestseller Funky Business: Talent Makes Capital Dance—a Bloomsbury best business book of all time—and has remained at the forefront of the new generation of management experts since then. He was ranked number 23 on the 2009 Thinkers 50, the biennial ranking of management thinkers.

Dr. Ridderstråle is co-owner and chairman of the Swedish management group Mgruppen, one of Scandinavia’s leading providers of management training and development. He also acts as a trusted advisor and consultant to a number of multinational corporations and is a visiting professor at Ashridge Business School in England and IE Business School in Spain. In 2007, he was awarded the prestigious Italian award Nobels Colloquia for leadership in business and economic thinking. His research has been published in leading academic journals.

Ridderstråle’s books Karaoke Capitalism: Management for Mankind and Funky Business Forever: How to Enjoy Capitalism are also globally celebrated manifestos on how to make it in the new world of commerce. His latest bestseller, Reenergizing the Corporation: How Leaders Make Change Happen, explains how to lead change. His books have been translated into more than 30 languages and published in more than 50 countries worldwide.

Dr. Ridderstråle is a sought-after speaker who has spent the last decade giving people the competence, confidence, and courage to think, feel, and do things differently. In keynotes and workshops, he conveys his message with passion and energy, not only sharing tools but also inspiring his audiences to lead change. His combination of academic rigor, imagination, humor, and dynamic presentation style has inspired audiences from Moscow to Mumbai and San Francisco to Shanghai. His diverse client list includes Fortune 500 companies, major government bodies, sports teams, and trade unions.

Dr. Jonas Ridderstråle has an MBA and a PhD in international business and was named Sweden’s outstanding young academic of the year. He has appeared on CNN’s Global Office in an extended interview exploring the ideas behind his books and has been featured in Fortune, Fast Company, Time, The Financial Times, The Times, Stern, Newsweek, Paris Match, and many other publications worldwide.

Speaker Videos

Funky Business

Speech Topics

Forces of Funk: What Drives Change?

The only way your business can respond to new challenges in a constructive way is by truly understanding why the socioeconomic landscape is changing so rapidly. The best leaders have always been business sociologists. They know that you find opportunity by analyzing context.


Speaker Jonas Ridderstråle has written and thought extensively about the seismic impact of changes in technology, institutions, and values. In this presentation, he talks about how we can benefit from advances in information technology and telecommunications as individuals and as leaders of corporations. He also discusses the implications of institutional deregulation on capitalism, nation states, political parties, companies, families, and others, and explains how the world’s shift from a geographically structured entity to one dominated by global tribes will influence life inside and outside our organizations.

Life in the Funky Village: Business Megatrends

Today, most people live, work, and do business in a deregulated global economy. More and more individuals enjoy the freedom of choice. In this presentation, speaker Jonas Ridderstråle discusses how we can capitalize on these new freedoms of movement by understanding shifts towards democratization, personalization, feminization, polarization, and many others.


The Future Firm: The Shape of Things to Come

The successful 21st-century corporation is fundamentally different from the one that dominated the industrial era. Gone are the days of the local and bureaucratic conglomerate.


Today, wealth is made with wisdom and customers are more demanding than ever. In a world with a surplus of products and services of similar prices and quality, the future firm must thrive on its ability to be different and add value in new ways.


Speaker Jonas Ridderstråle outlines where we should expect to find the firm of the future, what it will look like, and how it will operate. Learn more about how the company of tomorrow profits from changing circumstances and unpredictability. Find out why winners must be focused, innovative, heterarchical, and adept at leveraging themselves.

The Holy Grail of Business: Compete on Fitness & Sex Appeal

We remember the likes of Dell and Dylan for their ability to innovate and then continuously reinvent themselves. Successful corporations and individuals perfect the art of creating imperfections—the Holy Grail of commerce. In a deregulated world, the new business reality is a “double economy” with increasing differences between the best and the rest.


Instead of appealing to what’s average, you must explore what’s extreme. Those who stay in the middle of the road will be run over by modern monopolists.

Using examples from some of the most successful contemporary business organizations, speaker Jonas Ridderstråle describes two ways in which to build sustainable competitive advantages:


  • Adapt to the new business environment by developing business models that are incredibly fit by exploiting the imperfection of markets
  • Compete on sex appeal by understanding people’s moods

Reenergize: Making Change Happen

In today’s topsy-turvy world, a company is either quick or dead. Velocity is determined by a function of mass and energy: the lower the mass and the greater the energy, the faster an object moves. Since the early ’90s, most companies have been more or less obsessed with decreasing mass: managers have outsourced, offshored, downsized, and rightsized.


However, many organizations have neglected the other variable of the function: energy. The new challenge lies in reenergizing corporations. The ’90s gave us a competence-based view of the firm. Now the time has come to move on and profit from a new perspective that boosts the energy level of the enterprise.


Speaker Jonas Ridderstråle shares how to lead change by:


  • Envisioning the future: using competence to analyze the context and challenge the organization
  • Engaging people: building confidence by managing all critical relationships individually so that commitment follows
  • Executing strategies: combining personal courage with an uncanny ability to secure both the capacity and capabilities necessary to make change happen

Leading Leadership: Developing a Corporate Religion

People can be extraordinarily courageous and make tough decisions only when they have something to believe in. The most successful organizations on our planet are all systems of faith. Produce change therefore requires a “corporate religion.” This overall purpose guarantees a clear direction and coordinated action.


Speaker Jonas Ridderstråle outlines the key elements that you should find in a great business bible and poses a series of questions to increase your organization’s competitiveness:


  • Ideological: do you have a dream or just a five-year plan?
  • Mythical: do you have a CSO—a chief storytelling officer?
  • Ritual: do you hold ceremonies for triumphs and tragedies?
  • Ethical: do you tolerate mistakes and failure?
  • Emotional: do you have personalized EVPs—employee-value propositions?
  • Material: do you have a place that allows talent to play at work?
  • Organizational: do you have arrangements ensuring collective intelligence?

The +Factors: New Recipes for Success

To stand a chance at truly turning up after the downturn, we must radically rethink the traditional recipes for business success. The best leaders apply a positive logic of PLUS: moving beyond the person, the present, and the existing paradigm of management.


Using examples from some of the most successful contemporary corporations, speaker Jonas Ridderstråle presents four key ideas to help you turn up the volume and expand your business:


  • The enterprise+: how your corporation can effectively mimic the principles of self-organizing systems—compete on “we” rather than “me”
  • The entrepreneurial+: what it will take to reinvent management practices to lead a corporation that is as good at innovation as past organizations were at exploitation
  • The evolutionary+: how successful competitive strategies must evolve to reflect new customer requirements in a world where most people feel stressed, bored, lonely, and anonymous
  • The emotional+: what you need to do to effectively deal with the challenge of utilizing the full potential and the emotional capital of the firm