Narayan spends much of his time working with senior leaders to improve leadership judgment. In his view, leadership marks itself at the fulcrum of decision – when leaders make choices. Consequently, supporting leaders in the moment of decision has to be a critical part of leadership development.
Narayan began his academic career, writing and teaching in Strategy. He taught strategy and policy at New York University's Stern School, and the business faculties of the University of Alberta (Canada) and the National University of Singapore. He published in areas including forecasting, value conflicts, strategic choice, organisational structure and culture, and other strategy related areas. He has also presented papers at academic conferences such as The Academy of Management, The Strategic Management Society and ORSA/TIMS.
Increasingly, Narayan found himself working with Senior Management Teams to improve strategy development and execution in their teams. Obstacles rarely emerged from teams being unable to determine the right course of action; rather, they came from teams being unable to work successfully toward common goals. This observation led Narayan to focus on leadership in strategy execution.
Over the last decade, Narayan has designed, developed and delivered leadership development programmes for individuals, small groups and large groups, in customised and open settings. He has redesigned, repositioned and delivered INSEAD’s flagship senior management programme – The Advanced Management Programme – around the theme of improving leadership judgment.
Today, Narayan spends quite a bit of his time examining how leaders present themselves in their roles. In his view, leaders – and indeed the rest of us – repeat behaviour patterns that were once successful. The ability to unlearn, examine and relearn behaviour frequently arises from mindful attention to the moment. Leaders seeking to improve their effectiveness can do so by practicing attention, which in turn can help them identify areas for improvement in their behaviour.
Prior to joining INSEAD, Narayan worked as a strategy consultant with the Monitor Group, and with his own firm, Clean Slate Consulting. He worked with companies in FMCG, financial services, pharmaceuticals, healthcare, retail and many others. Since joining INSEAD, Narayan has been Associate Dean of Executive Education for Asia, and Dean of Executive Education for all of INSEAD.