“What we need is an entrepreneurial society in which innovation and entrepreneurship are normal, steady, and continuous... Innovation and entrepreneurship have to become an integral life-sustaining activity in our organizations, our economy, our society.” —Peter F. Drucker

The exodus of talented people from their pressured corporate roles into independent entrepreneurial work suggests that Drucker’s ‘life-sustaining activity of innovation’ is being neglected in our organisations. “My identity was so entangled with my former employer, it was like clothes that wouldn’t come off ,” quotes Professor Herminia Ibarra in recent research on corporate escapees.

We are seeing major changes in our expectations of work, and in the contributions we each need to make to keep our businesses competitive in a global market. Goffee and Jones spoke about some of these trends.

Following their keynote presentation, David Champion, Editor-at-Large, Harvard Business Review chaired a panel discussion of experts representing government and businesses small and large, all committed to supporting innovation in our society.

Keynote Remarks

  • Rob Goffee, Emeritus Professor of Organisational Behaviour, London Business School
  • Gareth Jones, Visiting Professor, IE Business School (Madrid)


  • David Champion, Editor-at-Large, Harvard Business Review


  • Herminia Ibarra, Cora Chaired Professor of Leadership and Learning and Professor of Organizational Behavior, INSEAD
  • Kriti Sharma, Global Director, Mobile Product Management, Sage
  • Philip Sinclair, Head of Innovation and Growth, Cabinet Office
  • Richard Straub, founder, Peter Drucker Society Europe; Secretary General, European Learning Industry Group

About the Speakers

David Champion is a senior editor at Harvard Business Review and serves as its European Correspondent, based in Fontainebleau, France.  He is also a member of the Academic Committee of the European Center for Executive Development (CEDEP) in Fontainebleau.

Richard Straub founded the non-profit Peter Drucker Society Europe after a 32-year career at IBM. He is on the executive committee of the European Foundation for Management Development, is Secretary General of the European Learning Industry Group, and serves the IBM Global Education practice in a strategic advisory role.

Professors Rob Goffee and Gareth Jones describe themselves as 'sociologists fascinated by the world of work and organisations'; they have a professional relationship spanning 30 years. Their most recent book together is Why Should Anyone Work Here? and they are recipients of two prestigious McKinsey Awards for Harvard Business Review articles. Rob is Emeritus Professor of Organisational Behaviour at London Business School (LBS) and Gareth’s career has spanned both the academic and business world: He is currently a Visiting Professor at IE Business School in Madrid, and was previously HR Director for the BBC.

Herminia Ibarra is the Cora Chaired Professor of Leadership and Learning, and Professor of Organizational Behavior at INSEAD. Prior to joining INSEAD she served on the Harvard Business School faculty for thirteen years. She is a member of the World Economic Forum Global Agenda Councils. Her most recent book, Act Like a Leader, Think Like a Leader was published in 2015.

Philip Sinclair is Head of Innovation and Growth, Cabinet Office.

Kriti Sharma is Global Director, Mobile Product Management at Sage and a trailblazer for the millennial generation. Having graduated from university just five years ago, Kriti led the team that brought award winning mobile payments app Barclays Pingit, to market. She was also head of Big Data at the high street bank before joining Sage. Kriti is also a noted personality in the developer space and regularly hosts meetups for the community.