What is Humanistic Leadership?
Humanistic leadership represents human-centered organizing practices. These practices honor the intrinsic value of all life and protect dignity of all humans. The practices are oriented towards flourishing of all life and the enhancement of human well-being. Humanistic management differs from traditional, mechanistic, or economistic practices in that humans are more than resources, stakeholders, assets or capital. Human beings are the means and ends and the purpose of management is to serve human flourishing rather than wealth creation.
Origin of the Academy
We believe businesses and organizations play a pivotal role in tackling today’s pressing global challenges. How can we create businesses and organizations that allow people and our planet to flourish? How do we move away from the current narrative of success as money, power and position and move toward people seeing themselves as changemakers who also inspire others to contribute to what the world needs? How can we create workplaces that provide meaning and purpose and honor the dignity inherent in all of us? How do we create a world that works for all of humanity?
Those are some of the questions a group of changemakers asked themselves when they began gathering more than a year ago to imagine the Humanistic Leadership Academy. The group consisted of leading university professors and business leaders from around the world determined to change businesses and organizations by transforming business education to be more human-centered. Through multiple collaborations and intense focus on turning theory into action, the impassioned group launched the Academy in June 2022 to provide enriching, enlightening and empowering experiences to faculty and students so that they can reliably show up as humanistic leaders for others. Through learning, reflection and engagement with like-minded individuals, professors and students are able to transform themselves so that they can transform others.
Ambitious Vision for Change
Driven by an urgency for significant change, the Humanistic Leadership Academy’s Core Team set aggressive goals of impacting one million+ students, 5000 faculty members, and 100+ businesses by 2027 through Professor Cohorts, their Humanistic Leadership Program for MBAs, and a series of webinars and other training in development.
Creating a world that works for all by transforming business education will require the talent and resources of many people, both inside and outside of business education. Anyone interested in supporting this movement is welcome! The first step is to sign our Humanistic Leadership Academy Manifesto and let us know how you can amplify our efforts. You can share on social media, introduce us to professors, volunteer as a speaker in Business School classes and conferences, hire humanistic leaders, BE a HUMANISTIC LEADER in your daily life! Please join us in creating a world that works for all!
Meet Our Core Team
Humanistic Management Scholar and Changemaker, Research Associate at Harvard University’s Human Flourishing Program (HFP), Co-founder Humanistic Management Network, Founder and President International Humanistic Management Association
Dr. Pirson holds the James F. Stoner Endowed Chair in Global Sustainability at
Fordham University and is a full Professor with a focus on Global Sustainability and Social Entrepreneurship. He is a research associate at Harvard University’s Human Flourishing Program (HFP). He co-founded the Humanistic Management Network and is founder and president of the International Humanistic Management Association. He is the Editor in Chief of the Humanistic Management Journal.
Dr. Pirson’s research spans various areas in the field of humanistic management,
including psychological and social psychological work on individual differences in mindfulness, trust, and well-being; organizational research on corporate governance, stakeholder trust, and social innovation; and conceptual and philosophical research on freedom, dignity, and well-being. He is actively exploring the role of higher education in positive change-making and social innovation, leading Global efforts to transform business education (including with the Jesuit Network, Ashoka, UN, etc.).
Dr. Pirson is a full member of the Club of Rome, leads the Humanistic Management working group at the UNPRME, and advises a number of social enterprises. He has won numerous awards for his work including from the Academy of Management and the Association of Jesuit Universities.
He completed a post-doctoral fellowship in Organizational Behavior (2009) at Harvard University. He holds a Ph.D. in Organizational Behavior (2007) from the University of St. Gallen, Switzerland, a Master of Business Administration (1999) from University Erlangen-Nuernberg, Germany, and Indiana University, a Master of Public Administration (Diplome de Sciences Po) (1997) from the Institute of Political Sciences, Strasbourg, France and a Bachelor of Arts in Economics (1996) from the University Erlangen-Nuernberg, Germany.
Director, Strategy, Improvement, Culture, Barry-Wehmiller
Wellinghoff forged his unique perspective as an integral part of defining and creating Barry-Wehmiller’s Truly Human Leadership culture. Brian rose quickly in the organization, working closely with CEO Bob Chapman and CPO Rhonda Spencer. Brian helped to tackle some of the most challenging organizational opportunities- enhancing sales incentive and recognition programs, establishing listening sessions across the organization, launching our continuous improvement journey, and co-creating Barry-Wehmiller University and the external Chapman & Co. Leadership Institute. Now, Brian leads Barry-Wehmiller External Outreach, specifically to Higher Education and Faith-based Initiatives, in addition to his role facilitating strategic conversation for the Barry-Wehmiller Executive Team.
Brian has taught nearly two dozen learning sessions in a variety of universities and programs- from traditional undergrads to Executive MBAs. This includes repeat engagements in the Gabelli MBA program at Fordham and development of new case simulations on the Great Recession and Customer Trust. Students have highlighted Brian’s ability to build practical conversation around intellectual topics and to utilize engaging facilitation and activities to bring the content to life. All of this fulfills Brian’s personal mission to invite people to breakthrough so that all people can more deeply experience the divine.
Co-Founder cause AGENCY, Owner Snowdon Ltd., HLA Co-Founder
Dafydd is an accomplished executive coach, entrepreneur and educator, who lives his commitment of creating a world that works for all. He has been working with global leaders, inventors, and luminaries across the world. As a result of his multidisciplinary and multi-faceted interactions, he developed his own “Transformative Inquiry” methodology, fostering a deeper level of collaboration, creativity and connection between individuals and teams.
Dafydd is also the co-founder of the Humanistic Leadership Academy, partnering with global organizations with the goal of transforming business education. His focus is on training the trainers and on cultivating the Humanistic Leaders of tomorrow. He passionately supports organizations and initiatives pursuing the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDG’s), creating structured frameworks and facilitating innovative solutions.
Dafydd has had the privilege of designing homes across the world and contributing to notable commercial projects, despite not having formal education or training as an architect.
Dafydd founded North Fork Polar Bears, a community centered around winter water immersion for healing and connection, as well as local fundraising. He also teaches Yogic, Martial, and Living Arts to empower health and wellbeing instructors with holistic principles.
Founder & Executive Chairman, Fairtrasa
Patrick Struebi is a serial social entrepreneur, thought leader, and Founder and CEO of the Fairtrasa Group, a pioneering social enterprise that lifts marginalized small-scale farmers out of poverty. Fairtrasa is one of the largest organic and fairtrade exporters from Latin America with a vertically integrated business structure, impacting over 56,000 direct beneficiaries.
For his work with Fairtrasa, Patrick has been selected an Ashoka Fellow, an Endeavor high-impact Entrepreneur, a Yale World Fellow, and a Gabelli Fellow. Furthermore, he has been named four times Social Entrepreneur of the Year by the Schwab Foundation (2014), The ABC Foundation (2012), Univision (2012), and Visionaries (2009). In 2014, the World Economic Forum named Patrick a New Champion and he writes a column at HuffPost and gives talks around the world on social innovation and related issues. Patrick is also an adjunct professor at Fordham University, where he teaches at the Gabelli School of Business.