Michael A Watkins


Michael Watkins brings 35 years of IT expertise, including implementation, administration, and management of state network systems. His expertise helps banks and credit unions save money by integrating new technologies.

He teaches at IMD, INSEAD, and Harvard Business School and leads world-class programs designed to accelerate leadership transition acceleration.

He is the author of The First 90 Days: Critical Success Strategies for New Leaders at All Levels.

Michael A Watkins is an internationally-recognized author of the groundbreaking work The First 90 Days: Critical Success Strategies for New Leaders at All Levels, considered “The Bible” on leadership transition. He teaches leadership and management courses at IMD in Switzerland, INSEAD in France, and Harvard Business School (where he holds a Katherine Graham Professorship). Other books of Michael’s include Predictable Surprises and Breakthrough International Negotiation: A Toolbox for Managers, which both won the CPR Institute Best Negotiation Book award.

Robert is an experienced consultant and trainer, providing services in over 30 countries. Additionally, he has held senior roles within numerous organizations, such as serving as Vice-President/General Manager (VP/GM) of a multinational systems integrator, serving as Managing Director (MD) of an international consulting firm, acting as Associate Counsel at a Washington DC law firm; COO for an upstart eLearning software company as well as CEO for several entrepreneurial ventures.

Watkins details the key challenges and pitfalls new leaders often encounter and offers specific steps that can be taken to circumvent them. He demonstrates how early wins can establish credibility and momentum while building early credibility and momentum; additionally, checklists, practical tools, and self-assessments are also provided to assist readers in applying the critical lessons to their own situations.

One of the critical tasks a new leader must undertake is taking time to comprehend their organization fully. By understanding its nuances, they can better grasp how its operations run and its needs for success – this will allow them to create an action plan and ensure no missed opportunities while building relationships among employees and colleagues.

Any new leader should also create an influence map to assist them in recognizing who are influential members within their organization and determine their interests. This can be accomplished by closely watching interactions among employees; doing so will enable the new leader to decide the type of communication to use with each person.

By taking these measures, new leaders can ensure they will experience a successful transition and avoid potential disasters that may arise in the future. Success or failure for new leaders typically depends on their performance in their first three months on the job – so starting right is paramount for ensuring their success!

Your career transition is an essential moment of transformation; how you manage it could determine whether it leads to success or failure. With this invaluable guide as your companion, you’ll have all the tools to thrive and survive in your new role.

He is the founder of Genesis Advisers.

Michael Watkins founded Genesis Advisers, a consulting firm that assists new leaders and leadership teams in accelerating their transition to high performance. Genesis Advisers has also introduced online solutions for executives to improve their leadership skills. Mr. Watkins has written over ten books about leadership and negotiation, taught courses at IMD, INSEAD, and Harvard Business Schools, and has additionally written articles for several leading business journals.

He began his career at the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) before transitioning to financial law practice at both these agencies and later serving as in-house counsel for large credit unions and brokerage companies. Subsequently, he served as president and general counsel of an investment holding company, where he led its legal department and equity derivatives group; additionally, he assisted the National Stock Exchange’s demutualization and sale to Wall Street investment banks as a senior executive.

At Bankers Trust, he advised clients on strategic initiatives, governance issues, board composition issues, and senior leadership teams within public and private companies. Furthermore, he has served as a consultant/coach to senior leadership teams from both sectors; additionally, he conducted workshops about topics like the first 90 days of leadership development and public policy.

He is a member of the American Academy of Management and has held multiple corporate and community board positions, such as an investment holding company board membership, large credit union board membership, political action committee memberships, public television station membership, and nonprofit technology company board memberships. Additionally, he has spoken as a guest lecturer at universities both domestically and abroad.

Dr. Charles Lee holds a Ph.D. in Decision Sciences from Harvard University and a BA and MBA from the University of Waterloo. His book “The First 90 Days: Critical Success Strategies for New Leaders at All Levels” has been featured in various business journals. He has contributed to several industry blogs, such as GonzoBanker and Cornerstone Advisors’ Telecommunications Blog. Additionally, his IT experience encompasses network administration, project management, and phone system implementation. Cornerstone Advisors employs him as their Director of Telecommunications, Infrastructure, and ATM Contract Negotiation and Advisory Services Practice. Before that, he taught at IMD, INSEAD, and the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard as an adjunct faculty member and was featured as an author in the HBR Guides 10 Must Read series for leadership and negotiation topics. He is based in Topeka, Kansas, with his wife and two children.

He is the director of JPL.

The Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), supported by NASA and managed by Caltech, is one of the research centers funded by this agency. JPL is famous for its robotic exploration of our solar system – from missions to Mars to Galileo probes at Jupiter to Cassini-Huygens on Saturn with its moons – making global headlines. Both its Space Flight Operations Facility and Twenty-Five Foot Simulator have been designated National Historic Landmarks by both organizations; JPL scientists have become prominent public speakers due to public outreach initiatives at JPL.

Michael A. Watkins is currently leading JPL as its Director. He joined JPL in 1993 and served for 22 years; on Aug 20, he announced his resignation for an opportunity at Caltech as Professor of Aerospace Engineering and Geophysics.

Under his tenure as director of JPL, it has successfully launched and operated various new missions and overseen their development – such as Europa Clipper to Jupiter’s icy moon Europa and Mars Sample Return campaign.

JPL has developed partnerships with private industry in addition to its scientific and engineering work, resulting in joint projects such as creating the avionics for Mars Exploration Rover Curiosity and InSight Lander; JPL systems are also currently used on other Mars Rover missions, Europa Clipper, and Juno missions.

Michael is an industry expert in information technology and has a thorough knowledge of how to make the most out of new technologies and deploy them efficiently to reap their full benefits. Alongside his technical ability, Michael also boasts strong business and leadership development expertise – serving as Adjunct Professor at INSEAD and lecturing at Harvard Business School and Kennedy School.

Michael is an experienced leader who understands the challenges of building and leading teams that can deliver results under pressure and in an ever-evolving environment. His experience has taught him how to motivate teams while creating an atmosphere conducive to creativity, collaboration, and success. Michael brings this leadership experience to Cornerstone Advisors, where he assists banks and credit unions save money by consolidating their information technology infrastructures, offering network administration services, telecom infrastructure upgrades, ATM solutions, and ATM placement services – based in Kansas City, Missouri!