Dave Ulrich speaker

Dave Ulrich

A global expert in academic advocating and radical transformation of HR.

Passionate about the need for radical change within the HR industry, David Ulrich is an engaging and entertaining speaker with truly educational insights into management and leadership. As a bestselling author and co-founder of a consulting firm that has worked with some of the world's biggest corporations, he has a wealth of knowledge to share and is a thought-provoking speaker.

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Speaker Profile

About Dave Ulrich

Background / History

David Olson Ulrich was born in Ely, Nevada  in 1953 and grew up in Oregon. His parents were hard working and believed in the values of community and service. He attended High School in Kansas City, Missouri and went on to Brigham Young University for his undergraduate degree. He then began studying Organizational Behavior at post graduate level and completed his doctorate in business at UCLA

He began teaching the MBA programme at the University of Michigan in 1982

From 2003 he took three years out to concentrate on missionary work for the Mormon Church. He has been married for over 35 years.


Ulrich was born in Nevada and raised in Oregon before studying at Brigham Young University. He went on to focus on Organisational Behaviour and achieved his doctorate in business from UCLA. In 1982 he started teaching the MBA programme at the University of Michigan, and since then has served on the editorial board of several journals, including the Human Resource Management Journal for nine years. Currently, he is a Fellow in the National Academy of Human Resources, and is on the board of directors for Herman Miller and the board of trustees at Southern Virginia University. As a co-founder of the RBL Group, Ulrich also advises top HR leaders for all over the world and has worked with more than half of the world's Fortune 500 companies.

In the past Ulrich has been named Number 1 Management Educator by Business Week, Most Influential International Thought Leader in HR by HR Magazine, and has been placed within the Thinkers 50 top management thought leaders.

Contact us or request a callback if you're interested in inviting David Ulrich to speak at your event.

David Ulrich is a professor at the School of Business at the University of Michigan, as well as a co-founder and partner at consulting firm RBL Group. With a huge variety of awards and accolades to his name, Ulrich has some radical views on HR but is widely known as someone who is injecting some crucial changes into the industry. Having written over 25 books and edited and contributed to hundreds more, David's knowledge is sought-after all over the world and he is an incredibly popular speaker.

Of the books Ulrich has been involved in, two are particularly influential. The Why of Work, which caused Ulrich to be named bestselling business author by the Wall Street Journal, explores the process of creating meaning and value in work environments. Meanwhile, The Leadership Code collates the current attitudes around HR and gives an excellent overview on the current state of thinking in the industry.

Ulrich's presentations focus on people management and leadership, as well as managing change in business. Among his most well-known lines of thought is the phrase "HR must give value or give notice" and this sums up his belief that HR needs take a seat with business decision makers if it's to have a real impact on organisations.

Current / Past Roles & Positions

  • Professor at the School of Business at University of Michigan - co-founder and partner at consulting firm RBL group.
  • Says 'HR must give value or give notice'. 
  • Named by Business Week as Number 1 Management Educator.
  • Has worked with over half the Fortune 200 companies.

Awards, Accolades, Achievements & Honours

  • Business Weeks Number 1 Management Educator
  • Named repeatedly by HR Magazine as Number 1 most influential international thought leader in HR
  • Wall Street Journals bestselling business author for The Why of Work
  • Among the Thinkers 50 management thought leaders

Speaking Style

Although a highly academic speaker, Ulrich knows how to keep an audience entertained using an informal attitude, quick humour and interactive segments. He is truly passionate about his subject matter and this shows in his presentations; audiences can expect to learn a great deal and be presented with new, innovative ways of thinking about HR.

Speaking Topics

  • Organizational Capability as a Competitive Advantage
  • Transformational Leadership
  • Building Sustainable Value through your HR Proposition
  • HR Transformation
  • Leadership Code
  • Strategic Human Resource Management
  • Building Your Leadership Brand through Results-Based Leadership
  • Brand Leadership


Testimonial for HR from the Outside In: "This book is a crucial blueprint of what it takes to succeed. A must have for every HR professional." - Lynda Gratton, Professor, London Business School

Testimonial for HR from the Outside In: "Packed with facts, evidence, and prescriptive advice. It is about being a business leader first, and an HR professional second." - Randy MacDonald, Senior Vice President, Human Resources, IBM Corporation

Books By Dave Ulrich

  • The Boundaryless Organization (1995, Ron Ashkenas, Steve Kerr, Todd Jick)
  • Human Resource Champions (1997)
  • Learning Capability (1999, Arthur Yeung, Mary Ann Von Glinow, Steve Nason)
  • Results Based Leadership (1999, Norm Smallwood, Jack Zenger)
  • Competences for the New HR (2002, Wayne Brockbank)
  • The Future of Human Resource Management (2005 Michael Losey, Sue Meisinger)
  • Human Resource Value Proposition (2005 Wayne Brockbank)
  • Companion for Strategic Human Resources (2008 John Storey, Pat Wright)
  • HR Transformation (2009 Justin Allen, Wayne Brockbank, Jon Younger, Mark Nyman)
  • Leadership in Asia (2009)
  • Global HR (2012, Wayne Brockbank, Jon Younger, Mike Ulrich)
  • Leadership Sustainability (2012, Norm Smallwood)
  • Leadership Brand (2007 Norm Smallwood)
  • The Why of Work (2010, Wendy Ulrich)
  • Tomorrow?s (HR) Management (1997, Gerry Lake, Mike Losey)
  • Why the Bottom Line Isn?t (2003, Norm Smallwood)
  • 100 Things You Need to Know (2003, Robert Eichinger, Michael Lombardo),
  • Human Resources Business Process Outsourcing (2004, Ed Lawler, Jac Fitz-enz, James Madden)
  • HR Competencies (2008 Wayne Brockbank, Dani Johnson, Kurt Sandholtz, Jon Younger)
  • Leadership Code (2008 Norm Smallwood, Kate Sweetman)
  • Asian Leadership (2010, Robert Sutton)
  • HR from the outside in (2012, Jon Younger, Wayne Brockbank, Mike Ulrich)

Fee Details

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To book Dave Ulrich call +44 (0)1628 636600 or email info@speakersassociates.com

Please note:
1. Fee guidelines are for speaking engagements taking place in England
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