Joseph E. McCann, Ph.D.
Distinguished Principal Fellow, Human Capital The Conference Board
Joseph McCann is a Distinguished Principal Research Fellow at The Conference Board and an internationally acknowledged scholar, consultant, and author of many books and articles on leadership development, organization design and strategic change, knowledge management, mergers & acquisitions, and new business venturing. He is a frequent speaker and presenter on these topics. His book Joining Forces: Creating & Managing Successful Mergers & Acquisitions was one of the earliest books to focus on merger/acquisition process design and integration issues. It was followed by Sweet Success, a book about internal corporate venturing in the food and drug industry. His third book, Mastering Turbulence: The Essential Capabilities of Agile & Resilient Individuals, Teams and Organizations, was published in July 2012. His ideas and work have been cited on several occasions in Fast Company, Fortune, Wall Street Journal, Barron’s, USA Today, several major newspapers, and in European and Asian media.
He earned his MA and PhD in business and applied economics at The Wharton School. Preceding graduate studies, he worked in the petroleum and ocean transportation industries and served as an intern on the U.S. Senate Budget Committee. He taught and led a management development center at the University of Florida after graduation, then taught at Emory University. At Emory he was also a senior research fellow in the Center for Leadership & Career Studies, and served on the Latin America & Caribbean Advisory Board affiliated with The Carter Presidential Center.
Following Emory, he served as a consultant for two years with an international professional services firm engaged in executive selection, merger/acquisition screening, and senior management assessments. After serving as a business school dean for six years, he accepted the newly created position of director of executive education at the University of Florida. While in this role, he guided the creation of the Conference Center of the Americas in Coral Gables and helped launch a successful three-nation distance learning network funded by a major foundation. From 2000 to 2012, McCann held senior academic leadership team roles at three business schools, including directing successful centers and institutes, and as consultant to the Ministry of Higher Education & Scientific Research in the United Arab Emirates.
McCann has studied the growth and competitive strategy issues of family owned and technology-intensive companies in several sectors over a twenty-year period. His hands-on work with these companies includes facilitating visioning and strategic planning sessions with senior management, and assisting in competitive strategy and new market entry studies in the environmental services, health care, tele-production, software, computer hardware, digital imaging, and biotechnology sectors. Other projects include assisting a global telecommunications firm develop a distance-learning network in Latin America, redesigning the European operations of a major consumer products company, and supporting the global strategy rollout of a fiber optics producer. He has directly supported the transition management planning for a newly elected governor, major eastern city mayor, and the redesign of several state and county-level agencies. M&A assignments ranged from the design and implementation of an entire merger & acquisition process for a specialty chemical company to providing advice to a Fortune 100 CEO engaged in a multibillion dollar hostile takeover. Other M&A assignments have been in the health care, insurance, energy, environmental services, and digital imaging industries.