Kenneth Mikkelsen

Kenneth Mikkelsen

Knowledge Broker ★ Leadership Advisor ★ Writer ★ Speaker ★ Connector of ideas‿people ★ Loud Listener ★ Cross-Pollinator

Copenhagen Area, Capital Region, Denmark
Management Consulting

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Kenneth Mikkelsen's Overview


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Kenneth Mikkelsen's Summary

I believe that knowledge is everything. Knowledge is ideas. Knowledge is power. Knowledge is hope.

But only if it is shared and applied.

That is why I work as a knowledge and innovation broker. My purpose is to help leaders rethink, redefine, and reshape their organizations and themselves to meet the challenges of the future.

I'm an entrepreneur, leadership advisor, writer, and speaker. But most importantly I'm a curious observer of trends that influence the future of work. I deal in horizon scanning and synthesizing to help people understand the big picture and prepare for the world of tomorrow.

On Twitter people list me in groups like: Thought Leaders, Entrepreneurs, Leaders Who Mean It, Foresighters, Strategy and Innovation, Future of Work, Enterprise 2.0, Leadership Development, Game Changing People, and my favorite: "Twitters who talk about things that interests me."

My previous work has featured in esteemed media like Harvard Business Review, Financial Times, The Economist, CNN, The Wall Street Journal, BBC, Forbes, Management Today, The Sunday Times, The Globe and Mail, Developing Leaders, Global Focus, China Economic Review, Personnel Today, Emerald Insight, Training and Development, Strategic Direction, The National, La Depeche, Management Issues, and all major Scandinavian media outlets.

Currently I am working on a book, with Richard Martin, exploring the importance of generalism in the modern organization.

Kenneth Mikkelsen's Experience

Privately Held; 1-10 employees; Management Consulting industry

January 2014Present (9 months) Zürich - Copenhagen - Paris - Washington DC

Future Associates help leaders rethink, redefine, and reshape their organizations and themselves to meet the challenges of today and tomorrow.

We believe that networks, combinatorial creativity and integrative thinking are essential to grow responsive organizations that are capable of adapting to the major shifts happening in society.

We wish to improve the state of the world by influencing how leaders make decisions, lead organizations, and impact society. We believe that the best way to predict the future is by creating it. Our aim is to bring humanity to business, and business to humanity.

The way we do that is by bridging future-thinking, strategy, leadership, disciplined collaboration, and organizational design.

We help visionary companies identify and tackle the big shifts in the world by cultivating the skills, mindsets, and organizational cultures needed to succeed in times of change.



Privately Held; 1-10 employees; Management Consulting industry

November 2002Present (11 years 11 months) Copenhagen - Paris - Mumbai

Kenneth Mikkelsen founded Controverse in 2002 as a knowledge brokering consultancy specialized in leadership and management storytelling, executive leadership coaching, and public relations.

For more than a decade Controverse has served as a trusted advisor to a range of clients challenging and supporting them to clarify and communicate who they are, what they do, and why it matters. 

Controverse has also served as a knowledge broker to members of the Growth Forum appointed by the Danish Prime Minister to advice the government on growth policies and strategies for Denmark in the global economy. Furthermore, Controverse has been involved in researching and debating what constitutes a global mindset in think tanks and national committees.

Kenneth Mikkelsen's Publications

  • A culture of givers improves productivity

    • Leadership Today
    • November 2013

    My latest article for Leadership Today - the Danish equivalent to Harvard Business Review. It features an interview with Wharton professor, Adam Grant, were he talks about the surprising science of success. Article in Danish.

  • A series of tsunamis are underway: Leaders must learn how to surf the waves

    • Emerald Strategic Direction
    • August 2013

    The purpose of this paper is to discuss the rapid changes occurring in the business world, fundamentally shifting the way we work, connect, and collaborate in the modern workplace.

  • Leadership Innovation 2.0

    • May 2013

    Economic unrest, changing market conditions and tough competition mean companies have to change their approach to leadership and equip leaders to get by in a new business environment.

  • Make the right choices to create a winning strategy

    • April 2013

    This article explores the 5 strategic choices that helped the multinational consumer goods company Procter & Gamble turn things around after a serious setback in 2000. I interviewed Roger Martin, the dean of Rotman School of Management, about his new book Playing to Win, which Martin co-authored with former Procter & Gamble CEO Alan G. Lafley.

  • The leadership revolution sneaked in through the back door

    • Berlingske
    • March 2013
    Authors: Kenneth Mikkelsen, Rasmus Rask

    Main feature in Berlingske, one of Denmark's leading newspapers, about the lacking understanding and adaptation of digital technologies and social media by top executives. Feature in Danish.

  • Rebalancing Leaders in Times of Turbulence

    • IEDP Developing Leaders - Executive Education in Practice - Issue 10, 2013
    • February 2013

    Business leaders need new beacons to navigate the process of rebalancing of themselves and their businesses. Why is it important to look at imbalance when creating new paths forward and rebuilding trust? The answer is strikingly simple. Balance is the most solid foundation on which businesses and societies can build and grow – and is a way to set a new context for leadership. Ghostwritten article.

  • Big Data - On the verge of a management revolution

    • Leadership Today
    • January 2013

    In-depth interview with two of the leading big data experts in the world - Erik Brynjolfsson and Andrew McAfee from MIT’s Center for Digital Business - about the future of big data. Article in Danish.

  • Before we choke in the leadership vacuum

    • Berlingske
    • October 2012

    Main feature in Berlingske, one of Denmark's leading newspapers, about the leadership vacuum in Danish politics. Feature in Danish.

  • Leaders in search of followership

    • October 2012

    A conversation with Barbara Kellerman. Kenneth Mikkelsen explores why leadership is so hard to exercise today. The article offers a critical look at modern leaders and why we are so fascinated by them and often blindly pursue the idea of great leaders.

    The interview relates to Barbara Kellerman's book: "The End of Leadership."

  • Adjust your global compass

    • August 2012

    Many of our assumptions of globalisation are formed by personal bias and public opinions that are expressed without substantiated data. As a result, executives lean towards dangerously flawed decision-making too often and pursue global one-size-fits-all strategies. In an interview with Pankaj Ghemawat, one of the world’s most accomplished business professors and global strategists, Kenneth Mikkelsen investigates the current state of globalisation and the implications for executives who have to navigate through the heavy fog of misinformation.

  • Greatness is a choice

    • April 2012

    In a conversation with Morten Hansen journalist Kenneth Mikkelsen explores the leadership qualities that is needed to stay ahead and sustain success in the long run.

  • Pirelli mounts a fresh set of tyres

    • December 2011

    In the midst of economic turmoil, tyre manufacturer Pirelli has embarked on an organizational journey in order to stay ahead of its game. Over the past two years, Pirelli has developed and introduced a new leadership model that aims at driving the vision of the company. The organizational change is based on an adjustment of the leadership behavior. Ghostwritten article.

  • Leadership for a global future

    • Emerald Management Thinking
    • October 2011

    Companies no longer internationalise – they globalise. This new reality leads to new dilemmas and challenges for companies when they develop leaders to operate on the global scene.This article takes a closer look at the characteristics of a truly global leader.

  • The little nation with the matches

    • Berlingske
    • June 2011

    Main feature in Berlingske, one of Denmark's leading newspapers, about Denmark's role in a globalized economy. Feature in Danish.

  • Profiting from leadership in 2020

    Key points from the leading top executive event in Denmark: VL-Doegnet 2011. Article in Danish.

  • When female leaders hit the glass ceiling

    • Leadership Today

    Interview with professor Herminia Ibarra from INSEAD Business School about women's career opportunities at the C-suite level. Article in Danish.

  • Leadership at a crossroads

    • Global Focus Magazine - European Foundation for Management Development

    The current economic and financial crisis has illustrated the increased complexity of the world and means that companies must re-assess their operational agility and explore new ways of coping with change. Kenneth Mikkelsen details some likely responses.

  • Use your brain for a change

    Kenneth Mikkelsen interviews leading Danish neuroscientist, Kjeld Fredens, about the latest discoveries in neuroscience - and why the findings are important to leaders and organizations. Article in Danish.

  • Innovation from the frontline

    Article about design thinking and innovation in one the largest US health care providers, Kaiser Permanente. Article in Danish.

  • Obama leads the way

    Article about the leadership style of American President, Barack Obama. Article in Danish.

  • Five minds for the future

    Howard Gardner, one of the worlds leading experts on intelligence, gives his views on the capabilities that are required to manage oneself and others in a globalized world full of challenges.

  • Effective knowledge management rubs off on the bottom line

    • Leadership Today

    Knowledge is difficult to quantify and steer in the desired direction for most organizations. Article in Danish about efficient knowledge management.

  • Leadership at the next level

    Interview with Indian professor and business executive, Dr. Jagdish Parikh. According to Parikh, there is a growing interest in creating an organizational culture based on support systems, networks and shared values, rather than on power, money and personal ambition – an interest in changing outlooks through deeper insights.

  • The battle for change

    The business world's rate of change will continue increasing. This challenges the ability of companies to manage long-term in a short-term world. Article in Danish about the growing importance of implementing professionalized project management in organizations.

  • No peace without danger

    Interview with former VP in the Wold Bank, Sven Burmester. Insight into the shifting power structures in the world. Article in Danish.

  • Guan xi and the land of opportunities

    As China continues to develop its business infrastructure, the increasing need to focus on leadership development becomes visible. Western organisations continue to invest in China, with many integrating their Chinese operations into their global strategies. These organisations, along with Chinese companies – whether private or state-owned – all need effective leaders.

  • India - a country in transition

    Article in Danish about the rise of modern India seen from the perspective of an aspiring young man.

Kenneth Mikkelsen's Skills & Expertise

  1. Strategy
  2. Leadership Development
  3. Entrepreneurship
  4. Management Consulting
  5. Thought Leadership
  6. Public Speaking
  7. Blogging
  8. Storytelling
  9. Strategic Communications
  10. Leadership
  11. Management
  12. Public Relations
  13. Coaching
  14. Corporate Communications
  15. Journalism
  16. Strategic Planning
  17. Social Capital
  18. Knowledge Management
  19. Research
  20. Social Entrepreneurship
  21. Workshop Facilitation
  22. Personal Branding
  23. Futures Thinking
  24. Social Innovation
  25. Executive Coaching
  26. Culture Change
  27. Knowledge Brokering

View All (27) Skills View Fewer Skills

Kenneth Mikkelsen's Languages

  • English

    (Full professional proficiency)
  • Danish

    (Native or bilingual proficiency)
  • French

    (Limited working proficiency)
  • German

    (Limited working proficiency)
  • Spanish

    (Limited working proficiency)
  • Swedish

    (Professional working proficiency)
  • Norwegian

    (Professional working proficiency)

Kenneth Mikkelsen's Additional Information

Honors and Awards:

Graduated from The Danish School of Media and Journalism with the highest honour and a distinction for the best foreign policy coverage.

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