Dr. Michael Sales


I am the privileged youngest son of an entrepreneurial show business family. I became a social scientist and an activist, who’s been part of a number of start ups and worked as a consultant across a wide spectrum of economic sectors. I have a number of degrees, including a doctorate in Organizational Theory from Harvard where Chris Argyris chaired my dissertation committee. I am particularly concerned with the design of life sustaining workplaces that attract and hold the highly creative, committed people who can navigate the fortunes of whatever future unfolds. I’ve authored a book on this topic with my partner, Anika Savage, and have written on a number of topics in the field of Organizational Behavior. I taught at the university level for about five years.  Find out more on Michael’s Website

Speaking Topics

  • Design Life Sustaining Organizations that Talented People Love to Join and Hate to Leave
  • Anticipatory Leadership: What It Is and How to Develop It
  • Seeing and Using the Big Picture
  • Four Archetypes of the Future, Critical Uncertainties: Identifying Organizational Pivot Points
  • Leveraging Self-Knowlege into a Power House of Change
  • Sexuality at Work: A Systems Approach to the Taboo Topic Everyone Knows About
  • Designing Great Simulations Where Life Imitates Art
  • Becoming One with the Global Mind Ain’t Easy!
  • American Democracy’s Stake in Deep Partnership at Work
  • Timing: What Executives Have to Learn from Comedians
  • Getting Real: Coming to Terms with the Absence of Answers
  • Artistic Movements as Metaphors for Organizational Culture
  • The Entrepreneurial Mind Set: Never Give Up!
  • How Strong Cultures Mentor,
  • A Tough Minded Approach to Truth

Bibliography & Video

  • About twenty publications from my partner, Anika Savage, and I can be found on the Art of the Future Publication page: http://www.artofthefuture.com/Publications.html.

    This is a partial list of my publications and papers. Here’s a link to the Amazon page where Life Sustaining Organizations — A Design Guide is described and reviewed: Click here


B.S./Economics (University of Pennsylvania);
MA, Broadcast Communications Arts (San Francisco State University);
Ed.D., Organizational Behavior (Harvard Graduate School of Education)

Additional graduate school training at the University of Chicago Graduate School of Business
Small Group Dynamics and Facilitation Certificate: NTL Institute
Certificate in Scenario Planning: Global Foresight Associates

Speaker Endorsement

“From direct experience and observation over his long career, I can say that Dr. Michael Sales has deep understanding of the key factors for the success and failure of organizations and the enablers of sustainability. His extensive consulting and coaching at all levels, from hourly workers to top leaders, in diverse organizations, including small family businesses, Fortune 500 companies, manufacturers, knowledge creators, religious organizations and hospitals, has informed his insight about the elements for maintenance of organizational health.

Dr. Sales is not about fashionable techniques aimed at, for example, time management, project management, quality control, which are, of course, all useful and valuable in a healthy organization. Rather, he is dedicated to the core human interactions and outlooks that provide the liveliness and confidence for an organization’s ability to adopt new methods, to react positively to environmental change, and to anticipate the future.

And he loves to talk! His educational background (Harvard School of Education with Argyris) and his time spent with the likes of Oshry (Organizational Workshop/ Power and Leadership Conference) forged his dedication to the improvement of organizational life with the attendant uplifting of its members. All this makes for a speaker with accurate and valuable content delivered with passion. So what’s not to like?” 

Angelo Lamola, PhD Consulting Professor, Stanford School of Medicine Chief Scientist. Rohm and Haas Company, retired.

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