Steve Denning
Steve Denning

About Steve Denning

Steve Denning has written over 900 articles on strategy and leadership as a senior contributor on

Steve is the former Program Director, Knowledge Management at the World Bank, where he spearheaded a major strategic shift. He now works with organisations in the U.S., Europe, Asia and Australia on leadership, innovation, business agility and organisational storytelling. Steve’s innovative work has been recognised world-wide. His clients have included many Fortune 500 companies.

Steve is a director of the SD Learning Consortium, a group of private sector firms that are committed to transforming the world of work. Steve has written over 40 articles for the management journal, Strategy & Leadership.

Reinventing Management For The Digital Age

In this keynote, Steve Denning will address the central management challenge of our time, how to accelerate the transition to a management that fits the digital age.

Amid the growing recognition that the machine model for management of the industrial age is increasingly obsolete, Steve will outline how the most valuable firms on the planet are replacing top-down command and control bureaucracies with a different kind of management that creates resilience for the firm, engaging workplaces, and customer delight, while also meeting social and environmental goals.

Film Age of Agile

Produced by Araceli De Leon

Steve Denning and Araceli De Leon, an economist and filmmaker, teamed-up to produce the documentary “Age of Agile” which shows the growing influence of Agile philosophy in critical, even life and death, junctures. The film depicts stories from the military, the financial services, and the performing arts. It shows how they each reach out for the transparency, the speed, and the understanding of the audience, that mark a generational shift in management. The film has won 27 international awards.

Half-day Workshop Reinventing Management for the Digital Age

What used to work, doesn’t any more!
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In this workshop, Steve Denning addresses the central management challenge of our time, how to accelerate the transition to a management that fits the digital age.

It builds on the fact that the most resilient firms today are those that have taken to heart the 1954 maxim, on which Peter Drucker repeatedly insisted: “There is only one valid purpose of a corporation: to create a customer.” The result is an emergent kind of management that has many names, including

  • Management 2.0 (Richard Straub),
  • Customer capitalism (Curt Carlson),
  • The experience economy (Joe Pine),
  • Working backwards from the customer (Amazon),
  • Discovery driven planning (Rita McGrath) and empowering customers (Satya Nadella)

It is a way of operating that is fundamentally different from industrial-era management, and a key ingredient of the digital transformations that most large firms are now attempting. The workshop explains why the goal of creating value for customers lies at the heart of activating resilience and the entrepreneurial spirit. The workshop embodies in principles and processes that enable firms to move more quickly, operate more efficiently, mobilise more resources, attract more talent, and use it more effectively, win over customers more readily, enjoy more elevated market capitalizations, while operating more ethically and delivering on resilience, social, and environmental goals.

The workshop reveals both the “why” and the “how” of reimagined management. It shows the ways in which the principles and processes of customer capitalism differ from industrial-era management in almost every important respect, including goal, structure, dynamic, leadership, strategy, innovation, operations, marketing, sales, ESG, budget, HR, risk management, and key performance indicators.

Unique features of the workshop include

  • Precise definitions of the principles and processes of digital-age management as compared to industrial-era management;
  • The use of a diagnostic tool that enables the measurement of the current status of, and progress towards, implementing the principles and processes of customer capitalism at the level of a firm, a unit, a team or an individual;
  • The resulting capability to make comparisons between different parts of a firm, and at different points in time; and:
  • The use of real-life case studies; including Amazon, Apple, GE, GEA, Haier, IBM, JP Morgan, Michelin, Microsoft, Novartis, Siemens, SRI International, and Tesla.

In the workshop, participants will get hands-on experience in implementing the principles and processes.

Who should attend?
The keynote and workshop will benefit senior and mid-level executives, entrepreneurs of all ages, and agile leaders—especially those in leadership functions undergoing dramatic technological change.

In this keynote and accompanying workshop, you will

  • Understand why the management practices and assumptions that were successful in the industrial-era are increasingly obsolete.
  • Learn the management principles and practices of the most successful and fastest growing firms on the planet.
  • Gain access to the research that underlies the emerging discipline of management as it is re-imagined management for the digital age.
  • Explore the use artificial intelligence tools to accelerate innovation.
  • Discover how to inspire others to reinvent the way they think about getting things done in the world.
  • Build relationships among a diverse group of peers.

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