Thomas Kolditz

Retired Brigadier General, Professor & Crisis Leadership Expert

Tom Kolditz is Professor in the Practice of Leadership and Management and Director of the Leadership Development Program at the Yale School of Management.  His experience as a leader development expert spans four decades in the public, private, and social sectors.  A retired Brigadier General and titled Professor Emeritus by the US Military Academy, Tom led the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership at West Point for 12 years.  In that role, he was responsible for teaching, research, and outreach activities in Management, Leader Development Science, Psychology, and Sociology. A highly experienced global leader, General Kolditz has more than 26 years in leader roles on four continents.  His career has focused on either leading organizations himself, or studying leadership and leadership policy across sectors.  He served for two years as a leadership and human resources policy analyst in the Pentagon, and a year as a concept developer in the Center for Army Leadership, and was the founding director of the West Point Leadership Center.  He was instrumental in the design and formation of the Thayer Leader Development Group, and is the managing member of Saxon Castle LLC, a leader development consultancy.

General Kolditz is an internationally recognized expert on crisis leadership and leadership in extreme contexts, and in the development of programs to inculcate leadership and leader development in everything from project teams to large organizations.  He has published extensively across a diverse array of academic and leadership trade journals, and serves on the editorial and advisory boards of several academic journals. He is a Fellow in the American Psychological Association and is a member of the Academy of Management.  He is a founding member of the Board of Advisors for the Department of Psychology at the University of Missouri, on the Council of Senior Advisors for the Future of Executive Development Forum, and is an Academic in Residence for the Global Leadership Strategy Network.  His consultancies include Google and GE.

A skydiving instructor since 1980, Kolditz served as the senior instructor for the West Point Sport Parachute Team.  He weaves his personal experiences and abilities as a soldier, skydiver, and scholar into the first-hand study, analysis, and practice of leadership in dangerous circumstances—in extremis leadership—and how such leadership can inform the practice of leading in more ordinary settings. His most recent book, titled In Extremis Leadership: Leading as if Your Life Depended on It, was based on more than 175 interviews taken on the ground in Iraq during combat operations. He has been named as a leadership Thought Leader by the Leader to Leader Institute and as a Top Leader Development Professional by Leadership Excellence. 

General Kolditz has presented leadership content to more than 150 governmental, corporate, and social sector audiences worldwide. As a professor, he has led academic seminars or given lectures to students from Babson, Wellesley, and Olin Colleges, the University of Missouri, Columbia University, Duke University, Yale University, the Military Psychology Center of the Israel Defense Forces, Peking University, the Beijing International MBA program, Harvard’s Center for Public Leadership, seven national and international service academies and more than ten major metropolitan law enforcement, firefighting, and public service academies and assemblies.  Kolditz has appeared on ABC World News, ABC 20-20, Al Jazeera, MSNBC, CBS, NPR, Calgary Today, Morning Ireland, and interviews with reporters from the New York Times, the Chronicle of Higher Education, the Associated Press, Time, Discovery, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Washington Post, La Razon, and more than a dozen national and international news agencies.   

To book leadership and crisis management speaker Tom Kolditz call Executive Speakers Bureau at 901-754-9404.

See Below for Full Bio

  • Speaking Topics:

    Crisis Management, Leadership, Management, Sports

  • Travels From:

    New York

  • Price:

    $15,000 - $20,000

    Notes on Fees

  • Videos
  • Full Bio
  • Speech Topics
  • Books
  • Testimonials
  • News

Thomas Kolditz

Tom Kolditz is Professor in the Practice of Leadership and Management and Director of the Leadership Development Program at the Yale School of Management.  His experience as a leader development expert spans four decades in the public, private, and social sectors.  A retired Brigadier General and titled Professor Emeritus by the US Military Academy, Tom led the Department of Behavioral Sciences and Leadership at West Point for 12 years.  In that role, he was responsible for teaching, research, and outreach activities in Management, Leader Development Science, Psychology, and Sociology. A highly experienced global leader, General Kolditz has more than 26 years in leader roles on four continents.  His career has focused on either leading organizations himself, or studying leadership and leadership policy across sectors.  He served for two years as a leadership and human resources policy analyst in the Pentagon, and a year as a concept developer in the Center for Army Leadership, and was the founding director of the West Point Leadership Center.  He was instrumental in the design and formation of the Thayer Leader Development Group, and is the managing member of Saxon Castle LLC, a leader development consultancy.

General Kolditz is an internationally recognized expert on crisis leadership and leadership in extreme contexts, and in the development of programs to inculcate leadership and leader development in everything from project teams to large organizations.  He has published extensively across a diverse array of academic and leadership trade journals, and serves on the editorial and advisory boards of several academic journals. He is a Fellow in the American Psychological Association and is a member of the Academy of Management.  He is a founding member of the Board of Advisors for the Department of Psychology at the University of Missouri, on the Council of Senior Advisors for the Future of Executive Development Forum, and is an Academic in Residence for the Global Leadership Strategy Network.  His consultancies include Google and GE.

A skydiving instructor since 1980, Kolditz served as the senior instructor for the West Point Sport Parachute Team.  He weaves his personal experiences and abilities as a soldier, skydiver, and scholar into the first-hand study, analysis, and practice of leadership in dangerous circumstances—in extremis leadership—and how such leadership can inform the practice of leading in more ordinary settings. His most recent book, titled In Extremis Leadership: Leading as if Your Life Depended on It, was based on more than 175 interviews taken on the ground in Iraq during combat operations. He has been named as a leadership Thought Leader by the Leader to Leader Institute and as a Top Leader Development Professional by Leadership Excellence. 

General Kolditz has presented leadership content to more than 150 governmental, corporate, and social sector audiences worldwide. As a professor, he has led academic seminars or given lectures to students from Babson, Wellesley, and Olin Colleges, the University of Missouri, Columbia University, Duke University, Yale University, the Military Psychology Center of the Israel Defense Forces, Peking University, the Beijing International MBA program, Harvard’s Center for Public Leadership, seven national and international service academies and more than ten major metropolitan law enforcement, firefighting, and public service academies and assemblies.  Kolditz has appeared on ABC World News, ABC 20-20, Al Jazeera, MSNBC, CBS, NPR, Calgary Today, Morning Ireland, and interviews with reporters from the New York Times, the Chronicle of Higher Education, the Associated Press, Time, Discovery, the Atlanta Journal Constitution, the Washington Post, La Razon, and more than a dozen national and international news agencies.   

To book leadership and crisis management speaker Tom Kolditz call Executive Speakers Bureau at 901-754-9404.

In Extremis Leadership, Leading As If Your Life Depended On It:

Cut through faddish, flavor-of-the-month leadership approaches and get in extremis. Gen. Tom Kolditz shows how extreme life-and-death situations can offer profound lessons for leaders in any setting. Gen. Kolditz’s research reveals that the leadership skills and principles evident in dangerous settings also apply to leading in business and everyday life, making this program applicable to both personal and professional success.

Dodging Bullets: How to Avoid Crisis:

Few people want to be put into a position of being crisis managers, so how can leaders prepare organizations to avoid crises before they occur? Gen. Kolditz will take the audience through specific processes and techniques to help leaders anticipate and prevent crises and have a more effective, more empowered work force every day.

Lessons from Sky Diving and High Risk Activities:

Gen. Kolditz has lead thousands of civilian sky diving jumps and leads West Point’s elite Black Knights. Through heart-stopping real-life stories of leaders in these extreme situations, Dr. Kolditz insists that leaders at all levels can improve their effectiveness. In this program he shares his knowledge about leading with influence, and communicating with purpose. He also has a variety of additional high-risk situations he shares that are ideal settings to seek and find great leaders, assess how they might be different, and gleans valuable insights for extraordinary leadership in everyday lives.

Bring Innovation Leadership to a Legacy Organization:

Learn best practices, tools and processes for effective organization design, Identify key steps for mobilizing your desired organizational structure. . Learn how to lead change in organizations, especially those that are tradition-bound and extraordinarily resistant to change. Tom Kolditz draws on first hand experience and multiple cases of innovation and change in organizations using a unique indirect strategy that was successful when more common change management strategies had failed.

Leading Through Tragedy:

Tragedy eventually overcomes all organizations in the form of the death or serious injury of one or more members. Learn what to do to prevent tragedy from disrupting organizational effectiveness, harmony and leadership effectiveness. Lessons include concepts about succession planning, and proven leadership behavior during times of chaos.

Leaders Developing Others:

One of a leader's most powerful legacies is to develop those who work with them and for them. Leadership development programs in business have too often been relegated solely to talent managers and HR directors. Tom Kolditz illustrates how, in an evidence based way, each leader can personally and directly develop their people, increasing the performance and retention of employees and building a solid foundation for the future. Tapping leadership development principles introduced, refined and currently in use at West Point, the Yale School of Management, and other high-performing organizations, Tom's presentation creates a clear path and practical framework for leaders to have greater impact and influence over their people while simultaneously helping them achieve their potential.

The Conference Board

"You were outstanding, really made us think and your presentation sparked much conversation in the remaining time we had together. Thank you again for inspiring us to think more systemically about leadership development and how we might improve."

Office of Leadership Development, FBI David Academy

"Colonel Kolditz is a visionary in the field of leadership training and development."

IESE

“In terms of what they thought of your presentation, we asked participants to rank the speakers 1-5 and you received all 5’s (with one 4). A very strong performance. Great job. Thank you!”

GE Corporate

“Colonel Kolditz spoke at my leadership class at Crotonville and was by far one of the singular most impactful speakers I've heard on Leadership.” “It was absolutely terrific, and folks are still talking about it… AMAZING… Truly. Inspirational.”
No News Found For this Speaker!
X

FIND A SPEAKER

TESTIMONIALS

Testimonials
  • Bridgeworks was awesome!!! Great feedback from all!! Thanks for all of your collaboration and positive we'll use you in the future.  
    Johnson & Johnson
  • "We loved our speakers. Thanks to you and your team for your outstanding service and thank you for your patience!"

    National Association of the Blind
  • "You made my job so much easier! You are the only bureau I will use."     
    Sigma Systems
  • The Nebraska Hospital Association along with numerous other state hospital associations have enjoyed a long-standing relationship with Executive Speak...
    The Nebraska Hospital Association
  • We truly appreciate the excellent support and attention to detail we have received from Executive Speakers Bureau.  They have provided us with so...
    IBM
  • “Thank you guys it was a pleasure working with you.... You made the whole process easy. Thanks again”
    CableNation
  • "Thank you so much for all your help in putting this together on such short notice. I will definitely use your services again in the future."
    Applied Materials
  • "Everyone loved Bob and he was so nice on site. Thank you for all you did. The process was so easy and we will definitely work with you again next yea...
    NBC
  • I’ve used the services of a number of speakers bureaus in the past. However, my current experience working with the Executive Speakers Bureau ha...
    Intel
  • "My entire team has enjoyed the experience of working with you and ESB more than words can express. Everything was handled in a professional and timel...
    Cregger Company
  • Everything went really well and we really enjoyed having Jack Uldrich as our speaker!  He was entertaining and funny and provided great examples....
    Novo Nordisk
  • "Richard, Your ability to put me in front of just the right group again and again, is nothing short of amazing. You work your tail off, you sweat the ...
    Alan Hobson
  • As always, you deliver excellent service. Thanks!
    Camden National Bank
  • "I wanted to share with you feedback of my experience in working with Executive Speakers Bureau.. Very responsive and detail oriented.  When I wa...
    Amdocs
  • You ladies really are the BEST!  After this event I am going to be on the hunt for keynote speakers in May.  I really want to work with you ...
    ICMI
  • "The group that I work with to obtain all of my keynote speakers is Executive Speakers Bureau and I can tell you that I don’t like working with ...
    Indiana Youth Institute
  • Thank you to both of you for everything surrounding Mr. Will as our special guest. I suspect, soon, I will be in touch regarding our next event. 
    Oxford Financial
  • "We not only went 3 for 3 but I'd say they were all home runs! Thanks for your help on the speakers. It was a key and very positive component of our c...
    Chem-Dry
  • "I want to thank you for helping with our Principals Day event. Marshall Goldsmith was excellent. Not only is Marshall the consummate professional, be...
    Burns & McDonnell
  • "I appreciate your recommendations.  In addition, you are always a pleasure to work with and understand the pains of an over worked meeting plann...
    Milliman
  • "WOW, is all I have to say and thank you!  Our event was a huge success and you never steer me wrong, both David Cottrell and Ryan Estis were exc...
    ICMI
  • "I LOVE this list that you sent me! I emailed several different places on Tuesday an...
    CoreLogic
  • "I will be sure that all involved know what a wonderful resource you have been. The universe smiled on me when I discovered Executive Speakers and you...
    Ocala Eye
  • "OMG Richard! As always you make me look like a rock star. Every single speaker we selected hit it out of the park. Thank you again. Can't even say wh...
    Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Assn.
  • The event was EASY Cake! and it went over very very well.  Thank you so much for the help and organization, it made my life very easy. 
    Boys & Girls Club
  • Thanks to Richard and Jo for all the coordination. Another homerun from Executive Speakers Bureau!  
    Wisconsin Hospital Association
  • Mr. Schelp you are a Rock Star! Thank you!!!  Deal #7 is done and more to come!
  • I want to thank you for all of your assistance you and Jenny were wonderful. If it had not been for you sending me suggestions I would not have found ...
    West Virginia Tourism
  • Angela, you & your team have my endorsement for making Memphis events successful. People should use you to plan their next event.
  • Thanks to you, Jo and the rest of your team.  You are the BEST.  Knowing you are behind a speaker allows us the luxury of concentrating on o...
    Ohio Hospital Association
  • "My mind was very much at ease knowing that Jack Uldrich was so well prepped.  I will definitely use your agency again."  
    EAIE
  • "Let me just say again, what a pleasure it is to work with you and ESB. You really make it harder for others to reach the bar."
    ASTD
  • "As I mentioned before, your engagement model was incredibly easy to work with, and I know we came to you on short notice!  I would highly recomm...
    Capitol One
  • "Your tenacity and persistence in staying in touch with us is a model example of good salesmanship and partnering.  I will be using you as an exa...
    Schneider Electric
  • Our bank has held an annual business and economic conference for the past 9 years.  We have worked with Executive Speakers every year and I have ...
    First Midwest Bank
  • We could not have done it without you.  Thank you for the outstanding suggestions.  The speakers were by far the best we have ever had.
    FedEx
  • "Thanks to you and Jo for all your efforts.  Connie Podesta and Roger Dow were great!"   
    National Apartment Association
Need Suggestions? Have Questions?

Need Suggestions? Have Questions?

Call us to discuss how we can help find the right speaker for your organization.

Get Ideas in 2 Hours or Less

Please fill in information below

Executive Speakers Bureau consistently receives praises about our speed and efficiency. From the beginning of your event planning, our extensive online speaker database and resourceful staff allow us to quickly equip you with the best speaker for your event.

Need a last minute speaker? No worries. Our speed and efficiency help us give you ideas for speakers in two hours or less.


Privacy by SafeSubscribeSM