News Stories · Leadership

High Performance Leadership celebrating its 75th edition

A milestone for program director and former hostage negotiator George Kohlrieser
December 2017

The stories of how George Kohlrieser and his High Performance Leadership (HPL) program have changed the course of lives and careers are many.

The 75th session of the HPL program takes place this December.  First launched in 2002, it is one of IMD’s most popular open enrollment programs. The IMD open enrollment programs have been ranked 1st worldwide by the Financial Times for six years in a row. And HPL is the longest running program at IMD under the same Director.

HPL focuses on helping leaders understand and develop their potential in leading themselves and leading others to be proactive in an ever changing and uncertain future.  Using a model of Secure Base Leadership, participants explore the roots of their leadership to enhance their ability to inspire people, drive change, build talent, and create cultures of organizational high performance.

“HPL won’t just teach you what leaders do, it shows you how to effectively lead yourself, lead others, and lead organizations,” is how Program Director George Kohlrieser describes the program.

Professor George Kohlrieser is an internationally-recognized expert on leadership, award-winning bestselling author, consultant, media commentator and motivational speaker. In his role as Professor of Leadership and Organizational Behavior at IMD he draws on 40 years of experience as a psychologist and veteran hostage negotiator. He is acclaimed for introducing the hostage metaphor to leadership development.

Recent executives who have completed High Performance Leadership have included:

Irish politician and entrepreneur Pádraig Ó Céidigh talked about his experience in the program to the Financial TimesHow a five-day business course changed a life.

Vito Angelillo, Terre des hommes General Director recently told IMD: “It is an intense and incredible journey. HPL is a great balance between tools, methodology and personal exchanges.”

Professor Kohlrieser attributes his program’s success in part to his dedicated collaborators. “The team that helps put together HPL time after time includes Program Coordination Manager Cristina Couto, a team of highly skilled executive coaches and guest speakers,” he said.

IMD President Jean-François Manzoni commented on the occasion: “I have had the privilege of working with George on a number of programs, including a few editions of HPL, and I’ve learned a great deal from listening to him. In particular, George really helped me to understand that we have a choice. Our genetic make-up and past experiences do contribute to shaping us, but if we develop our ability to be present here-and-now and to manage our inner state, it is possible to consciously over-ride our initial programming and choose instead to be a better version of ourselves. Through HPL, George and his team have helped thousands of executives to define and learn to become, a little bit more every day, their ‘better selves’.”

IMD is grateful to George for his service in delivering 75 impactful sessions of High Performance Leadership (HPL) to over 5´000 graduates.

High Performance Leadership runs 8 times per year: 6 in Lausanne and 2 in Singapore.

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