MARGARET (MEG) WHEATLEY, Ed.D.

Margaret (Meg) Wheatley began caring about the world’s peoples in 1966, as a Peace Corps volunteer in post-war Korea.  In many different roles–speaker, teacher, consultant, advisor, formal leader—she acts from the unshakable conviction that leaders must learn how to invoke people’s inherent generosity, creativity and need for community.  As this world tears us apart, sane leadership on behalf of the human spirit is the only way forward.   Since 1973, Meg has taught, consulted, and advised an unusually broad variety of organizations on all continents (except Antarctica). Her clients and audiences range from the head of the U.S. Army to twelve-year-old Girl Scouts, from CEOs and government ministers to small town ministers, from large universities to rural aboriginal villages.  She has served as full-time graduate management faculty at two universities, and been a formal advisor for leadership programs in England, Croatia, Denmark, Australia and the U.S.  Through Berkana, she has advised leadership initiatives in India, Senegal, Brazil, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Mexico, Greece, Canada and Europe.

Meg received her doctorate in Organizational Behavior from Harvard University, her  Masters in Media Ecology with Neil Postman from N.Y.U. , and her Bachelor’s from the University of Rochester (with a year’s study at University College London). She has been honored for her ground-breaking work by many professional associations, universities, and organizations.

She has authored twelve books, from the classic Leadership and the New Science (1992, 1n 21 languages) to Who Do We Choose To Be: Facing Reality, Claiming Leadership, Restoring Sanity (2017, 2023) and Restoring Sanity: Practices to Awaken Generosity, Creativity, and Kindness in Ourselves and Our Organizations (2024).  Her most creative work (2020 with Jerry Granelli) is an audio and book, The Warrior’s Songline, a Journey into Warriorship Guided by Voice And Sound

Since 2015, she has been training leaders and activists from more than 35 countries as Warriors for the Human Spirit, an in-depth training program and path of service supported by a robust global community.

Her website is designed as a rich library of materials for those seeking to lead and organize in life-affirming ways. Learn her most current thinking here.

URLs:
https://margaretwheatley.com/the-warriors-songline/
https://margaretwheatley.com/why-warrior-training/
https://margaretwheatley.com/library/current-thinking/

  • With His Holiness the Dalai Lama, New Orleans May 2013

  • Warrior Training in Italy, May 2018

  • Working with National Park Service in the Grand Tetons

  • Edmonton Public Library, December 2014

  • With Grace Lee Boggs in Detroit

  • With Quentin Bryce, Governor General of Australia

  • Teaching with Pema Chodron at Omega Institute

  • Presenting with Musician Barbara McAfee

  • Meg Wheatley and Pema Chodron

  • Book Signing, Dalai Lama Center

  • South African Women’s Learning Journey

  • 2nd Battalion, Hawaii

  • Aboriginal Village, Australia

  • Marrying Friends in Zimbabwe

  • National Parks Advisory Board

  • National Park Service Advisory Board -- Liberty Bell, Independence Hall Philadelphia November 2016

  • Now an honorary park ranger. National Park Director Jon Jarvis, Meg, Loran Fraser (Advisory Board Assistant to the Director)

  • Galapagos conversation

  • Kufunda Village Zimbabwe

  • Meg with her beloved Morgan horse

  • Meg and Richard Rohr at Ghost Ranch, N.M

  • Jerry Granelli, Meg & Ulrike Elbert—Warrior Training Faculty

Learn More About Meg

Approaching 80, I look back and see what a rich and blessed life I’ve had. I’ve been able to give my curiosity free rein and to be with extraordinary teachers and companions. I’ve been able to explore a wide range of disciplines, lived in several different cultures, and raised a large family. I’ve learned from an incredible diversity of people, from Indigenous peoples to the Dalai Lama, from small town ministers to senior government ministers, from leading scientists to National Park rangers, from engaged activists to solitary monastics. This access to so many sources of experience and wisdom, held in the container of friendship, continues to deepen my resolve to bring whatever I’m learning into my books and teachings.

I had an excellent liberal arts education at the University of Rochester and University College London. I served in the Peace Corps in Korea, 1966-1968, learning to thrive in a post-war, traditional culture where everything was different, teaching junior and senior high school English (minimum class size was 65). My M.A. is from New York University in Media Ecology with Neil Postman. My doctorate is from Harvard’s program in Administration, Planning, and Social Policy, focused on organizational behavior and change.

I have been a consultant and speaker since 1973, working with all types of organizations and peoples, on all continents (except Antarctica). Working in so many different places, it’s been easy to recognize patterns of behavior common across cultural and institutional differences, and to also note behaviors and worldviews specific to different cultures. And it has kept me alert to changing trends in leadership.

I was full-time faculty in two graduate management programs, Cambridge College, Cambridge, Massachusetts, and The Marriott School of Management, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah. I’ve been a formal advisor for leadership programs in England, Croatia, Denmark, Australia and the United States and, in Berkana, with leadership initiatives in India, Senegal, Zimbabwe, South Africa, Mexico, Brazil, Greece, Canada, and Europe. I was a formal advisor to the Director of the National Park System for ten years, a highlight in my career.

I am co-founder and president of The Berkana Institute, a global nonprofit founded in 1991. I am very proud of our decades of experimentation and support of life-affirming leaders everywhere. Explore our rich and varied history at www.berkana.org

My most creative work is The Warrior’s Songline, A Journey Guided by Voice and Sound (2020). In collaboration with musician Jerry Granelli, this new form melds voice and sound to create an evocative and transcendent experience that introduces listeners to the Warrior’s Path. https://margaretwheatley.com/the-warriors-songline/

I’ve written twelve books and dozens of articles (free on my website). My writings have been an invitation to explore new ways of leading based on wisdom drawn from new science, history, archeology, cosmology and many spiritual traditions. I’ve sought to apply this rich and crucial wisdom to the challenges of leadership and how people can live well together as community, no matter what’s happening in external circumstances.

I’ve received several awards and honorary doctorates. In 2003, The American Society for Training and Development (ASTD) honored me for my contribution “to workplace learning and development” and dubbed me “a living legend.” In April 2005, I was elected to the Leonardo Da Vinci Society for the Study of Thinking for my contribution to the development of the field of systems thinking. I was inducted into the International Leadership Association’s Hall of Fame in 2014.

I was raised in New York and then lived in Boston area. Since 1989, I’ve lived happily in Utah. I have two adult sons and five stepchildren, all seven from the same father. I have dozens of grandchildren and greatgrandchildren, most of whom live in Utah. I am held by the guardian mountains of Utah and frequently seek renewal in red rock canyons just a few hours away. My peaceful mountain home supports me to do my work and to take frequent brief spiritual retreats. My spiritual teachers’ guidance keeps deepening my spiritual practice, and I delight in the close proximity of beloved family.

To keep current with my work, see: https://margaretwheatley.com/library/current-thinking/

Books by Margaret Wheatley

Restoring Sanity: Practices to Awaken Generosity, Creativity & Kindness in Ourselves and Our Organizations

Who Do We Choose To Be: Facing Reality|Claiming Leadership|Restoring Sanity

The Warrior’s Songline: A Journey Guided by Voice and Sound

How Does Raven Know? Entering Sacred World: A Meditative Memoir

So Far From Home: Lost and Found in Our Brave New World

Walk Out Walk On: A Learning Journey into Communities Daring to Live the Future Now. Coauthored with Deborah Frieze

Perseverance

Finding Our Way: Leadership for an Uncertain Time

Turning to One Another: Simple Conversations to Restore Hope to the Future

A Simpler Way. Coauthored with Myron Kellner-Rogers

Leadership and the New Science.