Hall of Fame

Saluting distinguished management thinkers and
their contributions


About the Thinkers50 Hall of Fame

The business world is fickle and has a short memory. This is especially true in the world of business ideas. New tools and techniques are put to work and then taken for granted as they are incorporated into business life. The quest for novelty and differentiation means that curious business leaders move quickly onto the next big idea. This is reflected in the Thinkers50 Ranking, which is a barometer of the ideas and thinkers making an impact today.

This relentless curiosity is a good thing. But, it can mean that over time the names of those who originated the most innovative business ideas and inspired best practice are overlooked or forgotten. Through the Thinkers50 Hall of Fame we salute the distinguished thinkers whose contributions to management thinking have made it what it is today.


Thinkers50 Hall of Fame: The Selection Process

Every year we honour the contribution of a few individuals by inducting them into the Thinkers50 Hall of Fame. Their names and legacies are added to the ranks of those who have arrived here before them. All are distinguished thinkers who have all made a lasting and vital impact on how organisations are led and managed. They are the giants upon whose shoulders managers and leaders stand.

Thinkers50 Hall of Fame status is at the discretion of the Thinkers50 founders, Stuart Crainer and Des Dearlove, and their advisors. It is an honour given in recognition of an outstanding and exceptional contribution to management thinking over many years.

Thinkers50 Hall oF FAME 2020

Richard A. D’Aveni

“D’Aveni is the Kissinger of corporate strategy,” Adrian Slywotzky, author of The Profit Zone, has observed. “There are few authors with the prescience that D’Aveni has had. Each of his books accurately predicted major shifts in the nature of competition and the economy,” says Gary Hamel.  Fortune likened D’Aveni to the ancient master of strategic arts, Sun Tzu, as he advises executives either to be revolutionaries, and or to create order out of the chaos that revolutionaries cause. He also advises government, militaries, and other organizations on how to compete effectively.

Kathleen Eisenhardt

Kathleen Eisenhardt is the Stanford W. Ascherman M.D. Professor at Stanford University’s School of Engineering and a faculty member in the Stanford Technology Ventures Program. Her early work centered on how top management teams make fast strategic decisions, engage in conflict, and still get along. She moved on to explore how major corporations organize, and now strategy in high-growth (and profitable) new firms. Her most recent book (with Don Sull) is Simple Rules: How to Survive in a Complex World which explores how simplicity tames complexity in business, life, and nature. She is also co-author (with Shona Brown) of Competing on the Edge: Strategy as Structured Chaos which captures how corporations succeed at the “edge of chaos”.

Mary Parker Follett (1868 –1933)

Mary Parker Follett was born in Quincy, Massachusetts. She attended Thayer Academy and the Society for the Collegiate Instruction of Women in Cambridge, Massachusetts (now part of Harvard University). She also studied at Newnham College, Cambridge in the UK and in Paris. Her first published work was The Speaker of the House of Representatives (1896) which she wrote while still a student.   

Charles Clinton Spaulding (1874 –1952)

Charles Clinton Spaulding was an African-American business leader. He was both a practitioner and a considered thinker on the nature of management and business.  His insights on management practice pre-date the first English translation of General and Industrial Management written by Henri Fayol who is lauded as one of the earliest purveyors of a coherent philosophy of management.

David Teece

A native of New Zealand, David J. Teece is an academic, consultant and entrepreneur. He is the Thomas W. Tusher Professor in Global Business and director of the Tusher Initiative for the Management of Intellectual Capital at the Haas School of Business at the University of California, Berkeley. He is also a member of the board of overseers for the faculty of arts and sciences at the University of Pennsylvania. Teece has a PhD in economics from the University of Pennsylvania and has held teaching and research positions at Stanford University and Oxford University.

George S. Yip

George S. Yip is Emeritus Professor of Marketing and Strategy at Imperial College Business School where he was also Associate Dean for Executive Programmes. He is also currently Distinguished Visiting Professor at the D’Amore-McKim School of Business, Northeastern University.

Subscribe to our newsletter to keep up to date with the latest and greatest ideas in business, management, and thought leadership.

*mandatory field

Thinkers50 will use the information you provide on this form to be in touch with you and to provide news, updates, and marketing. Please confirm that you agree to have us contact you by clicking below:

You can change your mind at any time by clicking the unsubscribe link in the footer of any email you receive from us, or by contacting us at . We will treat your information with respect. For more information about our privacy practices please visit our website. By clicking below, you agree that we may process your information in accordance with these terms.

We use Mailchimp as our marketing platform. By clicking below to subscribe, you acknowledge that your information will be transferred to Mailchimp for processing. Learn more about Mailchimp's privacy practices here.

Thinkers50 Awards Gala 2023

Join us in celebration of the best in business and management thinking.