Jeanne Liedtka

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Jeanne M. Liedtka
Jeanne M. Liedtka.jpg.png
Jeanne M. Liedtka teaching
Born(1955-03-02)March 2, 1955
Trenton, New Jersey, United States
Alma materDarden School of the University of Virginia
Scientific career
FieldsAmerican Strategist and Professor of Business Administration

Jeanne M. Liedtka, OAM [1] (born March 2, 1955) is an American strategist and professor of business administration at the Darden School of the University of Virginia, particularly known for her work on strategic thinking, design thinking and organic growth.


Born in Trenton, New Jersey, Liedtka received a B.A. in accounting from Boston University in 1976, an M.B.A from Harvard Business School and a D.B.A. in management policy from Boston University in 1988.

She taught previously at Simmons College and at Rutgers University, and is United Technologies Chaired Professor of Innovation and Design Thinking at the Darden School of Business, University of Virginia.


Liedtka is particularly known for her work in corporate strategy. Beginning her career as a strategy consultant with the Boston Consulting Group, she has written and consulted on topics surrounding strategic thinking for over 30 years. Formerly the Executive Director of the School's Batten Institute, a foundation established to develop thought leadership in the fields of entrepreneurship and corporate innovation, Liedtka has also served as Chief Learning Officer for the United Technologies Corporation (UTC), headquartered in Hartford, Connecticut, and as the Associate Dean of the MBA Program at Darden.

Design thinking[edit]

Liedtka's work on design thinking is presented in her book, Designing for Growth: A design toolkit for managers, co-authored with Tim Ogilvie,[2] that won the 1800 CEO READ best management book of 2011.[3] Her recent research in design thinking is published in her two new books; Solving Problems with Design Thinking: Ten Stories of What Works, co-authored with Andrew King and Kevin Bennett;[4] and The Designing for Growth Field Book: A Step-by-Step Project Guide, co-authored with Tim Ogilvie and Rachel Brozenske [5]

Organic growth[edit]

Organic growth has been a focus for Liedtka's work that is described in her book The Catalyst: How You Can Lead Extraordinary Growth co-authored with Bob Rosen and Robert Wiltbank.[6] Based on a multiple year study of operating managers who excelled at producing revenue growth in mature organizations. The Catalyst was named one of Business Week magazine's best innovation and design books of 2009.[7] In 2012, she published another book on growth, The Physics of Business Growth, co-authored with her Darden colleague, Professor Ed Hess [8]

Strategic thinking[edit]

Liedtka's work in strategic thinking has focused in two areas: One is in identifying and exploring five central elements that distinguish strategic thinking in practice : it incorporates a holistic systems perspective, it is possibility and intent-focused, involves thinking in time, is hypothesis-driven, and is intelligently opportunistic.[9] Her second contribution has been in distinguishing between strategic thinking and strategic planning. In this work, she has suggested what a more "generative" planning process, that encouraged strategic thinking, might look like. She has argued for the need to move beyond strategic thinking, to incorporate a broader notion of strategy as experienced. She currently runs the course Design Thinking for Business Innovation on Coursera.[10]

Latest publications[edit]


  1. ^ ORDER OF AUSTRALIA - Appointed an honorary Officer (AO) in the General Division
  2. ^ Liedtka, Jeanne (2011), Designing for Growth: A design thinking tool kit for managers, Columbia University Press, p. 227, ISBN 978-0-231-15838-1 with Tim Ogilvie
  3. ^ 1800 CEO READ list of the best management books of 2011
  4. ^ Liedtka, Jeanne (2013), Solving Problems with Design Thinking: Ten Stories of What Works, Columbia University Press, p. 232, ISBN 978-0-231-16356-9 with Andrew King and Kevin Bennett
  5. ^ Liedtka, Jeanne (2014), The Designing for Growth Field Book: A Step-by-Step Project Guide, Columbia University Press, p. 144, ISBN 978-0-231-16467-2 with Tim Ogilvie and Rachel Brozenske
  6. ^ Liedtka, Jeanne (2009), The Catalyst: How You Can Become an Extraordinary Growth Leader, Random House Inc., p. 272, ISBN 978-1-933199-36-8 with Robert Rosen , Robert Wiltbank
  7. ^ Business Week's best innovation and design books of 2009
  8. ^ Liedtka, Jeanne (2012), The Physics of Business Growth: Mindsets, System, and Processes, Stanford University Press, p. 144, ISBN 978-0-8047-8477-1 with Ed Hess
  9. ^ Strategic Thinking: Can it be Taught?
  10. ^ "Design Thinking for Innovation".
  11. ^ The Influence of Design Thinking in Business: Some Preliminary Observations, with S. Carr, A Halliday, A. King, T. Lochwood
  12. ^ Beyond Strategic Thinking: Strategy as Experienced and Embodied, pp. 153–169
  13. ^ Strategy as Design DOM Research Lab Publication Volume 4, 2010, pp 295–310
  14. ^ Getting to Growth: The organization as its own worst enemy, with R. Rosen and R. Wiltbank

External links[edit]