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thinkers50 ranked thinker

Whitney Johnson

Expert on the powers of disruption, and the ways to grasp the opportunities of change, starting with the personal.



01. ranked thinker

Ranked #30 in 2017.

Previous positions: #49 (2015).



Thinkers50 2015 Talent Award.


LinkedIn influencer, with over one million followers.


Johnson’s research and work in disruptive innovation start with the understanding that the framework of disruption is – at a very high level – a framework for managing change, which begins with the individual. She developed her proprietary framework and diagnostics after having co-founded the Disruptive Innovation Fund with Harvard Business School’s Clayton Christensen. Whether scaling a business or trying to get your people to be more innovative, Johnson’s research helps people to harness, rather than merely cope, with change.




A former award-winning Wall Street stock analyst, Johnson is an exective education coach for Harvard Business School. She is also co-founder (with Clayton Christensen) of investment firm, Rose Park Advisors. In 2017 she was selected by Marshall Goldsmith as a Top 15 Coach, and in 2018 was named a Top Voice by LinkedIn. Johnson hosts the weekly Disrupt Yourself podcast.


Build an “A” Team: Play To Their Strengths and Lead Them Up the Learning Curve (HBR Press, 2018); Disrupt Yourself: Putting the Power of Disruptive Innovation to Work (Routledge, 2016); Dare, Dream, Do: Remarkable Things Happen when you Dare to Dream (Routledge, 2012).




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“Challenging, always interesting, and required reading for leaders.

Stuart Crainer & Des Dearlove, Thinkers50.

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