Dominic Houlder with co-author Jules Goddard – photo Lukas Kroulik
What might philosophy – often seen as the ultimate pinnacle of ivory tower academia – have to do with strategy and strategy execution, the gritty leadership processes that keep real-world organisations on track?
In today’s turbulent times, Dominic finds that leaders cannot just proclaim their strategy, telling people what to do, or even how to do it. They must address the question why. Why should they follow you – Dominic asks. Will your strategy help those in your care to flourish?
Human flourishing is the domain of moral philosophy – the search for the good life – and strategy is empty without flourishing at its heart
Dominic’s career intertwines philosophy and strategic leadership.
Educated at Cambridge studying the philosophical underpinnings of politics, he began his working life in Japan and the United States with the Swire Group, combining this with his growing passion for Eastern thought. After taking an MBA at Stanford he went on to become a strategy adviser and manager with the Boston Consulting Group, living in the UK, Spain and Mexico, later moving into a corporate role as Group Strategy Director for a global construction materials business.
Following a three-month meditation retreat he transitioned into the strategy and entrepreneurship Faculty of London Business School, where he has held a part-time position for many years as Adjunct professor in Strategic and Entrepreneurial Management, alongside his advisory work and positions on non-profit Boards, also serving as Chair of his family business in Latin America. Meanwhile he deepened his philosophical insights under the supervision of the late Sir Roger Scruton.
Dominic is a frequent speaker on philosophy for leadership, strategy execution, crisis strategy, mindfulness – and the intersect between these. Choosing to work primarily with professional service firms and knowledge intensive businesses, he has clients on every continent except Antarctica, offering masterclasses, facilitating senior management and Board retreats, as well as providing individual coaching for leaders. At London Business School he is Academic Director for two of the School’s flagship Executive Education programmes – the Global Business Consortium, a unique initiative focused on peer learning between those on track to the top of six leading global organisations, as well as the open programme, Executing Strategy For Results. He teaches across all the School’s postgraduate degree programmes, repeatedly winning teaching awards.
Today, he lives with his partner on the Isle of Skye in Scotland, which provides exceptional opportunities for reflecting and writing, and where he is also a crofter. Ultra-fast fibre allows him to connect from this remote location to audiences all over the world.
Here, he offers you a range of perspectives on his work, including his tutorials on the fundamentals of strategy which serve as the foundation for his work, alongside the fundamentals of philosophy.