Charan’s introduction to business came early while working in the family shoe shop in a small town in northern India, where he was raised. He earned an engineering degree in India and soon after took a job in Australia. When his talent for business was discovered, Charan was encouraged to develop it. He earned MBA and doctorate degrees from Harvard Business School, where he graduated with high distinction and was a Baker Scholar, then served on the faculties of Harvard Business School and Northwestern University before pursuing consulting fulltime.
Charan’s work takes him around the globe nonstop and gives him an unparalleled, up-to-date insider view on how economies and leading companies operate. Through keen observation and analysis, he forms powerful insights that help business leaders face their toughest challenges in the areas of growth, talent development, corporate governance, and profitability. His timely, concrete advice is a powerful tool in navigating today’s uncertain business climate. Former chairman of GE Jack Welch says Charan “has the rare ability to distill meaningful from meaningless and transfer it in a quiet, effective way without destroying confidences,” while Ivan Seidenberg, the former CEO of Verizon, calls Charan his “secret weapon.”
Charan has coached more than a dozen leaders who went on to become CEOs. He reaches many more up-and-coming business leaders through in-house executive education programs. His energetic, interactive teaching style has won him several awards, including the Bell Ringer Award at GE’s famous Crotonville Institute and Best Teacher Award at Northwestern. He was among Businessweek’s top ten resources for in-house executive development programs.
Charan has authored 16 books since 1998 that have sold over two million copies in more than a dozen languages. Execution, which he co-authored with former Honeywell CEO Larry Bossidy in 2002, was a #1 Wall Street Journal bestseller and spent more than 150 weeks on the New York Times Bestseller List. He has also written for such publications as Harvard Business Review, Fortune, Businessweek, Time, Chief Executive, and USA Today.
Charan was elected a distinguished fellow at the National Academy of Human Resources and has served on the Blue Ribbon Commission on Corporate Governance. He has served on the boards of Hildalco in India, Emaar, Austin Industries, Tyco Electronics, and Fischer and Porter. His most recent book, The Attacker's Advantage: Turning Uncertainty Into Breakthrough Opportunities (2015), defines the business skills imperative to succeed in today’s completely different and enormously challenging environment, one marked by “creative destruction” and structural uncertainty. His most recent book is titled The Amazon Management System: The Ultimate Digital Business Engine That Creates Extraordinary Value for Both Customers and Shareholders.
- The Game Changer - How You Can Drive Revenue and Profit Growth with Innovation
The need for talented people in the right jobs can be summed up in a simple way: no talent, no numbers. Talent is a leading indicator of whether the business is headed up or down. Smart leaders put people before numbers, because it is talent, in the end, that delivers the numbers necessary to keep a business strong and healthy.
We live in a world of unprecedented change and massive volatility. What remains constant is the capital most companies hold in terms of innovation and creativity. "Innovation," says Charan, "is the world's best and perhaps only way to win in the face of fast commoditization." Using examples such as Procter & Gamble, Honeywell, Nokia, LEGO, GE, HP and DuPont, all of which harnessed the power of innovation, Charan offers both an instructive and inspiring look at transforming today's companies and remaining profitable in the face of economic uncertainty. The audience will gain:
-How to put the customer at the center of innovation
-The building blocks of innovation
-How to view innovation as a social process
-Insight into reducing the risk of innovation failure
-The knowledge to become a leader in innovation
- Corporate Boards
In 30 years of helping directors deal with the practical challenges of governing well, Charan has become a leading authority on corporate boards. Directorship magazine named him "one of the most influential people in corporate governance and the board room." He facilitates board self-evaluations, peer reviews, strategy retreats, and CEO evaluations, and advises on recruitment of new directors and compensation. Charan has served on several boards and on the National Association of Corporate Directors Blue Ribbon Commission on Corporate Governance.
Growth is vital to economic recovery and is among the most pressing issues facing companies today, but growth doesn't happen because managers decide to broaden the product line, spend more money on technology, beef up the sales force or acquire another business. Instead, growth starts with a mindset and insatiable curiosity about the world's needs.
- Leading Your Business Through The Global Tilt
It is quite obvious the business world is in a state of flux. We have plummeted from the highs of the last economic boom into the most troubled economy of the past fifty years—an economy that is now globally interconnected and immensely complex. Businesses are frantically trying to find their way in the newly reworked landscape, where the rules of the game seem unclear and sometimes unfair. Drawing on his experience with businesses worldwide, Ram Charan offers perspective and insight for business leaders operating in this new competitive arena, where the balance of economic power has dramatically shifted. The audience will learn:
-The profound shift in economic power that is underway and the opportunities it presents
-How to formulate a clear-headed strategic response to new kinds of global competition
-What resources, skills and talent will be needed to respond to the global tilt
-How to reorient the organization's psychology and decision making
-Specific companies in the North and the South that are succeeding in today's challenging environment
The wide gulf between strategizing and getting things done is a growing problem in today's increasingly complex business world. For businesses to prosper and grow, particularly in a challenging business environment, the gap between promising results and delivering them must be closed. Charan argues execution takes place as a result of robust dialogue that links people, strategy and operations. What's more, he contends that leading the three core processes of an organization (people, strategy and operations) is the real job of running a business and espouses the need for deeply and passionately engaged leaders. The audience gains:
-Recognition that execution cannot be delegated
-Insight into how companies like Wal-Mart, Dell, and GE use execution to outcompete
-The framework of flawless execution
-Tools to develop the discipline of execution
-Ability to use a robust, reality-based process for thinking about business in an integrated way
Fortune magazine calls him "the most influential consultant alive" - a reputation earned through more than 30 years of wise counsel to top business leaders around the globe. Charan has a unique perspective on how great leaders differ from the rest. He breaks through the facade of leadership to explain the capabilities leaders must possess, how to build a leadership-driven company, how to lead in economic uncertainty, how to develop and grow your own leadership capability, and finally, how to plan for smooth succession.