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Professor Eric Neumayer, London School of Economics and Political Science - Starter for 10

19 January 2018

Professor Eric Neumayer, London School of Economics and Political Science - Starter for 10

Eric Neumayer is professor of environment and development at the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). He is currently the School’s pro-director for faculty development, overseeing the School’s recruitment, review, promotion, retention and pay policies. He studied economics, political science and development studies in Germany and at the LSE. His main research interests lie in environmental economics, international political economy and research methods. He has published widely in a range of journals across different social science disciplines and he is the author of four books, most recently Robustness Tests for Quantitative Research (with Thomas Plümper), Cambridge University Press 2017.

Eric attended the Top Management Programme 37, which took place between October 2015 - April 2016.

Here is Eric's Starter for 10:

  1. What is the best piece of management/leadership advice you have ever been given?
    We fake it until we make it.
  2. Who would you have liked to have worked with/for?
    President Barack Obama.
  3. What is the biggest change you have seen in management/leadership approaches?
    From unprofessional to professional.
  4. Who has inspired you most in your working life?
    My bosses.
  5. What comes naturally to you as a leader? And what do you feel you have to work on?
    Discipline, hard work, leading by example. I have to work on having difficult conversations.
  6. Who would you choose to be stranded on a desert island with?
    My father. With his practical and DIY skills that are orthogonal to my skill set, we have a good chance of survival. And he doesn’t talk too much either.
  7. What will you remember most about Top Management Programmme?
    The session with and presentation by Professor Sir David Eastwood, currently vice-chancellor of the University of Birmingham. His diagnosis was spot on: we had golden years and didn’t know or appreciate it, whereas we operate in a much more regulated, competitive and hostile environment now.
  8. What will be the most enduring learning point?
    The difference between a strategic leader and an expert. I’m still far too much of an expert.
  9. Thinking about your career and experiences, what advice would you give your younger self?
    Don’t worry too much: just fake it until you make it.
  10. What one thing would make your job easier?
    Having the financial resources of a top US university at my disposal.
  11. What’s been your biggest professional challenge and how did you overcome it?
    Making the decision whether or not to enter senior university management. Overcome by keeping my options open as long as possible and then, when this was no longer possible, simply jumping into the cold water.
  12. If you could get tickets to any event in the world what would it be?
    Going back in time: a ticket to the football World Cup final 2014 in Brazil.
  13. What can’t you live without?
    It used to be football but now that I can no longer run let alone play football it turns out I can live without it (if much more poorly). Remain hiking holidays, novels, theatre, opera and stand-up comedy.
  14. What would you be if you weren’t a…. ?
    A journalist, probably, though I didn’t like it when I did an internship many years back. I played with politics as well but don’t have the stomach for it. I admire anyone who does.
  15. What’s your favourite leadership book and why?
    None. I don’t believe in leadership books.
  16. What would be your priority activity if you were invisible for a day?
    I invoke the Fifth Amendment. ;-)

Find out more on the Top Management Programme here.

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