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Dr. Kaihan Krippendorff is the founder of Outthinker, a former McKinsey & Co. consultant and author of five business strategy books, most recently Driving Innovation from Within. A sought-after keynote speaker, recognized expert and popular blogger on the topics of business strategy, innovation, growth, and transformation, Kaihan is helping a growing cadre of leading companies and corporations such as Microsoft, Oracle, Johnson & Johnson, Kellogg’s, TIAA-CREF and BNY Mellon prepare themselves to compete in a digital, agile, purpose-driven future.

Kaihan is a member of the prestigious Thinkers50 radar group – A global selection of the top 30 management thinkers in the world to follow. He was also shortlisted by Thinkers50 for a Distinguished Achievement Award in Innovation – awarded to the person in the world that has contributed the most to the world’s understanding of innovation in the past two years. Kaihan is currently ranked the Thinkers360 #1 Global Innovation Thought Leader and the Thinkers360 #1 Global Business Strategy Thought Leader.

Amidst his dizzying schedule of keynote speeches, consulting projects, ongoing research and writing, Kaihan still finds time to teach at business schools throughout the US and internationally. Regularly featured in major business media outlets Kaihan is an advisory board member for a blockchain-powered transportation platform, an international food processing/exporting company, and a B-corporation focused on sustainable products and lifestyle.

A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania’s Management & Technology Program, Kaihan has spent more than a decade studying the intersection of language, technology, and innovation to drive competitive advantage. He earned his BS in finance from Wharton Business School, BS in mechanical engineering from the University of Pennsylvania, MBA from Columbia Business School, and Doctorate of Science in Economics from Abo Akademi.

Nobel Peace Prize winner Muhammad Yunus said, “Kaihan shows that with a compelling idea anyone can change the world,” and that message lies at the heart of Kaihan’s strategic approach.

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Zachary Ness is the Chief of Staff of the Outthinker Network, a network of EVP, SVP, and C-level heads of strategy from Fortune 500 companies. Intimate physical and virtual events bring him together with leading experts in business management and executive leaders taking their organizations into the future. Since joining the Network in 2016, Zach has interviewed dozens of thought-leaders and executives to uncover practical steps and ways for organizations to drive transformation.

In addition to his responsibilities for the Outthinker Network, Zach manages the keynote speaking activities of Kaihan Krippendorff, one of the most in-demand speakers on strategy, innovation, growth, and transformation.

Before joining Outthinker, Zach worked for a medical technology company that designs tools to increase clinic efficiency in developing countries.  Zach co-founded a startup company that has created a healthier and safer alternative to traditional tobacco products. His experience includes conducting and analyzing market research, project management, business and product development, social media, and marketing. Zach received his Bachelor’s degree from Middlebury College.

Leslie DaCruz leads many of Outthinker’s key strategic client relationships. Leslie has more than 30 years of experience leading teams to breakthrough results in areas of general management, new business initiatives, game-changing strategy, and marketing. He has held senior executive positions at The Walt Disney Company, PepsiCo, Hasbro, Laureate Education, USC and Mars and Co.  Leslie has built a career of stepping into new situations, quickly sizing up issues and opportunities, inventing new ways of doings thing, and then executing on them.   As a result, he has launched numerous new ventures and built businesses, brought new products and services to market, and created/positioned brands in Fortune 100 companies; as well as worked with small companies and startups, in both for profit and non-profit sectors.  As a senior executive with Disney, Leslie was hired at the inception of a new division where he was instrumental in creating a twenty-fold increase in revenues over a ten-year period, building retail revenue to more than $1 Billion per year. He has experience in consumer products and services, entertainment, and education.
Half of Leslie’s career has been in Europe and Latin America. He is Fluent in Spanish and Portuguese, and proficient in French.  He is a graduate of the Wharton School and University of Pennsylvania.

Zach Ferres is a Senior Advisor to Outthinker. Zach is a lifelong serial entrepreneur and technology executive who built and sold his first technology company at the age of 24 and was recognized as one of the Top 33 Student Entrepreneurs in the World by the Kauffman Foundation and Entrepreneurs Organization at the Global Student Entrepreneur Awards. Zach co-founded Coplex, one of the largest Startup Studios in the country that works with corporations to innovate faster. He is also an award-winning speaker, a runner, and a columnist for Entrepreneur Magazine.


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Margaret McIntyre is our Community of Practice Manager, helping our global community of Outthinkers access the knowledge, tools, and support they need to deliver our process effectively.   She became interested in cultivating knowledge through people in the mid-1990s.  After getting trained in communities of practice with Etienne Wenger, she was selected as the knowledge manager for Dove Consulting, and then Knowledge Manager for North America for Egon Zehnder. She also worked as the Community of Practice Manager for a small, non-profit in global health where she supported physicians and political leaders in advocating for changing practices in both multi-drug resistant TB and global road safety.  She organized several global political and technical meetings at the United Nations, Harvard, and the Carter Center.  She also conducted extensive interviews and facilitated thinking sessions with global health leaders researching best practices in collaboration. This resulted in co-authoring “Real Collaboration: What It Takes for Global Health to Succeed.”

Margaret began her consulting career at McKinsey & Company, then worked collaboratively to help clients develop solutions to their strategic, operational and organizational issues.  Her clients have ranged from Fortune 500 corporations to small, privately-held companies in industries such as healthcare, transportation, automotive, clothing, and software, among others. She has an MBA in Marketing and a BS in Chemistry beginning her career as a research chemist with Mobil Oil.  In her spare time, Margaret enjoys philosophy, traveling, and photography.


Shannon Wallis  leads curriculum design efforts, certification training, and plays a central role in new content development for Outthinker. She brings more than 20 years of experience in leadership program design, executive coaching, transformational change, and strategic planning. Shannon is the former global director of high-potential leadership development at Microsoft. In her role, she was the chief architect of an award-winning leadership program and responsible for the development of top-tier talent. She worked with multiple Fortune 100 businesses as diverse as Coca-Cola, Price Waterhouse, EMC, VMware, Federal Express, and Grameen Foundation. Widely sought in her field, Shannon has contributed to multiple books on leadership development and talent management. Shannon holds a Master of Business Administration with concentration in health services management from Duke University and a Bachelor of Science in human development and social policy from Northwestern University. She is certified in a variety of psychometric instruments including both the World Institute for Action Learning and Authenticity Consulting coaching methodologies.

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