Anand Narasimhan

Shell Professor of Global Leadership and Dean of Research

Anand Narasimhan is Shell Professor of Global Leadership and Dean of Research. He focuses on top team and board dynamics and their impact on organizational transformation. He works with board directors and senior executives on how to enhance their leadership presence to create a positive impact on their followers and stakeholders.

Anand’s teaching, consulting, and research highlights the importance of the specific contexts that top leaders operate in, particularly the tendency of successful individuals to accentuate their own abilities and discount the importance of supporting factors such as team members and institutional structures and process. His research shows how leaders need to understand their own powers of containment and acquire literacy in reading conscious and unconscious cues to create aligning mechanisms that generate large-scale transformation.

A top leader is frequently made aware of the special abilities and characteristics that have made them successful. The sooner a leader transcends such hype and starts to recognize the many others on whose shoulders they stand, the more impactful their legacy.

Anand is co-author of Quest: Leading Transformation Journeys, a book summarizing IMD faculty’s research on corporate transformations, which won the 2015 Axiom Business Books International Business Gold Medal. He is currently working on a book on the unconscious dynamics of teams as an underappreciated factor in corporate governance failures.

His research has been published in top organizational, sociological, and psychological journals such as Harvard Business Review, Academy of Management Journal, Organizational Science, Annual Review of Sociology, and Personnel Psychology. He has served on the editorial boards of Organization Studies and Human Relations.

Anand has led programs on board and top leadership effectiveness for clients from a wide range of industries such as Iberdrola, Borealis, Borouge, Qatar Petroleum, Shell, and Holcim.

At IMD, he is Director of the Team Dynamics for Boards program. He serves on IMD’s Executive Committee as Dean of Research and was additionally Dean of Faculty until 2021. He is also a board member of the Case Center and the International School of Lausanne and is currently qualifying to be a teacher of Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy (MBCT).

Before joining IMD in 2007, Anand served for a decade as organizational behavior faculty member at London Business School, and prior to his academic career he worked for Unilever.

Selected publications
Academic publications
Insight for Executives
Theranos founder fooled investors with the promise to revolutionise healthcare – it offers three big lessons for companies

Less than three months after being charged by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) with “massive fraud” and barred from being the CEO of a public company for ten years, entrepreneur Eliz...

Corporate Governance Board Ethics
18 June 2018
Insular Takeda adopts a global outlook

The story. When Yasuchika Hasegawa took over as president of Takeda in 2003, the Japanese pharmaceutical company was experiencing sluggish domestic growth and facing a drop in revenue as lucrative ...

Strategy Culture
28 October 2013
Business school professors face an uncertain future

Massive open online courses (Moocs) threaten the existing business school model and that includes many professors in the classroom. The arrival of Moocs will make 60-70 per cent of existing busines...

Talent Management Organizational Learning
30 June 2013