Mark Thompson

Expert on executive leadership, business strategy, and innovation.


Inducted into the Thinkers50 Coaching Legends in 2023.


 Ranked #1 CEO Coach 2021, Stanford CEO Summit and Goldsmith Leading Coaches.


As a Broadway producer, Mark’s plays have earned 10 nominations and 5 Tony Awards.


In his book, Success Built to Last (co-authored with Jerry Porras and Stuart Emery), Mark draws on his research of top achievers to outline what lies behind success. Successful people, he explains, pursue their goals because they are committed to doing what they love, not because they seek the approval of others. High achievers define success as the ability to make a difference and are driven by the “three P’s” of Purpose, Passion, and Performance. In Now Build a Great Business, Mark and his co-author Brian Tracy, reveal a series of seven powerful principles that can change a business for the better. His more recent bestseller, Admired, co-authored with Bonita S. Thompson, has been defined as a primer on how the world’s most admired companies achieve long-term success and growth. It presents 21 simple and powerful strategies to help you become more valued and respected – for what matters to you.


Based at Stanford University, Mark has coached the leaders of some of the world’s fastest-growing innovative companies, including the former CEO of Lyft, Logan Green, Pinterest co-founder Evan Sharp, Richard Branson, and Steve Jobs. He has been voted by the American Management Association as the World’s #1 Executive Coach to Companies Driving Growth, Innovation, and Transformational Change. From 1998-2013, Mark served as a visiting scholar and lecturer for Professor Cliff Nass and Stanford University Real-Time Venture Design Lab. He is the former chief of staff and chief customer experience officer for Charles Schwab and is a co-founding advisor of Richard Branson’s Entrepreneurship Centres.


Admired: 21 Ways to Double Your Value (with Bonita S Thompson, Independent, 2021); Now … Build a Great Business: 7 Ways to Maximise Your Profits in Any Market (with Brian Tracy, AMACOM, 2010); Success Built to Last: Creating a Life That Matters (with Jerry Porras and Stuart Emery, Wharton School Publishing, 2006). ‘Transformational Growth and Disruptive Change’ (AMAQuarterly, Winter 2017-18, Volume 3, Number 4).


Media picks


“America’s #1 leadership coach for all C-level execs.”

Chuck Robbins, CEO, Cisco Systems

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