Faculty Director Associate Professor of Management Faculty Member, Executive Education
Rita McGrath is a globally recognized expert on strategy, innovation, and growth. Her work and ideas help CEO's and senior executives succeed in rapidly changing and volatile environments, and she is valued for her rare ability to connect research to business problems. Recognized as one of the top 10 management thinkers by global management award Thinkers50 in 2013 and winning the award for outstanding achievement in the strategy category, McGrath speaks regularly at corporate events, such as the Microsoft CEO Summit and the World Economic Forum meeting in Davos. She appears regularly on television and radio and is often cited in the press, including The Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Financial Times, and Businessweek, Inc. and has published several articles in the Harvard Business Review. McGrath is the co-author of three books in addition to her latest book, The End of Competitive Advantage: How to Keep Your Strategy Moving as Fast As Your Business (Harvard Business Review Press).
She has also been named one of the top ten business school professors to follow on Twitter, and was named one of the 25 smartest women to follow on Twitter by Fast Company magazine. In 2009, she was inducted as a fellow of the Strategic Management Society, an honor given to those who have had a significant impact on the field.
Prior to life in academia, McGrath was an IT director, worked in the political arena and founded two startups.
Rita Gunther McGrath, a Professor at Columbia Business School, is regarded as one of the world’s top experts on strategy and innovation with particular emphasis on developing sound strategy in uncertain and volatile environments. Her ideas are widely used by leading organizations throughout the world, who describe her thinking as sometimes provocative, but unfailingly stimulating. She fosters a fresh approach to strategy amongst those with whom she works. Thinkers50 presented Rita with the #1 award for Strategy, the Distinguished Achievement Award, in 2013. Rita is in their top ten global list of management thinkers overall. She has also been inducted into the Strategic Management Society “Fellows” in recognition of her impact on the field.
Rita maintains an active social media presence, and has been rated one of the 25 smartest women to follow on Twitter by Fast Company Magazine. She consistently appears in rankings of the top business school professors to follow on that medium: Professors on Twitter. She authors a regular column, “The Entrepreneurial Strategist” for Inc Magazine and blogs regularly at HBR.org. Rita is also one of the Wall Street Journal’s Experts.
Rita’s new, best-selling book, is titled The End of Competitive Advantage: How to Keep Your Strategy Moving as Fast as Your Business, which was recognized by Strategy+Business as the #1 business book of the year. Rita has co-authored three previous books: Discovery Driven Growth: A Breakthrough Process to Reduce Risk and Seize Opportunity (2009); MarketBusters: 40 Strategic Moves that Drive Exceptional Business Growth (2005); and The Entrepreneurial Mindset (2000), all published by Harvard Business Review Press. MarketBusters has been translated into ten languages and was named one of the best business books of 2005 by Strategy+Business. Rita is one of the most widely published authors in the Harvard Business Review, including the best-selling “Discovery Driven Planning” (1995), which was recognized as an early articulation of today’s “lean” startup philosophy and has been praised by Clayton Christensen as one of the most important ideas in management - ever. She is a highly-respected academic researcher whose work has won awards from the most prestigious management journals.
Rita joined the faculty of Columbia Business School in 1993. Prior to life in academia, she was an IT director, worked in the political arena, and founded two startups. She received her Ph.D. from the Wharton School, University of Pennsylvania and has degrees with honors from Barnard College and the Columbia School of International and Public Affairs. She is married and is proud to be the mother of two delightful grownups.