Dr. Mannie Sher
Dr. Mannie Sher PhD, AAPSW, TQAP, FBAP
Principal Consultant/ Researcher,
Executive Coach and Board Evaluator
I work as a social scientist investigating and consulting to top teams of organisations on their culture change and development and change plans. I bring the accumulated scientific experience and wisdom of the Institute to bear on organisational dynamics and culture and thereby facilitate leadership groups in taking a fresh look at their strategic direction and performance levels.
In the kind of volatile working environments in which we exist, I help organisations to be smart and agile, to be in immediate touch with the views and needs of their users and to mobilise the willingness to change, loyalty, inspiration and commitment of their workforce. I work with organisations and communities to go beyond surviving to remain creative, in turbulent times through developing capacities for rapid adaptability, inspired leadership, excellent teamwork and a responsible bottom-up team-focussed approach to design and delivery of products and services.
I address the institutionalisation of work process that often stands in opposition to these objectives and it is my task to apply practical theory and high-level change-oriented consultancy to the challenges of complacency, out-dated practices and low-morale teams and turn them into star teams with stellar performance. I assist leadership to respect and advance their followership beyond their normal limitations through sincere and deep collaboration with them towards creating and nurturing next-generation leaders.
These work ideals have evolved over many years as a result of my involvement in Tavistock group relations conferences, most notably the Leicester conferences. These international conferences consist of deep studying of group, organisational and global dynamics and their causal determinants which are mostly hidden from awareness and sometimes they are unconscious. I apply the lessons I have learned from these earth-moving, life-changing conferences to all aspects of my work – consultancy, executive coaching, supervision, board evaluation, teaching and training and writing for publication.
These advanced work activities would not be possible were it not for the favourable containing work environment of the Tavistock Institute, under the direction of
Dr Eliat Aram, that provides colleague support and challenge, as well as opportunities for personal psychotherapy and my own supervision.
Working together with Dr Leslie Brissett, I have the honour of co-directing the Tavistock Institute’s Dynamics @ Board Level programme which is based on well-established Tavistock Institute approaches – addressing the unconscious, working with whole-system dynamics of boards and experience-based learning. With Camilla Child, I have the pleasure of co-leading the Tavistock Institute’s consultancy team which offers a variety of professional consultancy interventions to clients ranging from government, the EU and the public sector. From both these roles and others, I serve the Tavistock Institute’s commitment to the development and spread of new knowledge and the maintenance of high professional standards. This is an aspiration of the Tavistock Institute in all its work.
I am an executive coach working with individuals, but always having in mind that they are part of larger systems, ie their organisation, community and society. As an executive coach, I explore with clients in individual interviews, and where appropriate, in small coaching groups, what is occurring at the interface between them as unique personalities, their formal organisational roles (and informal ones too) and their professional environments.
As a writer, I have over 50 publications – 3 books with 2 in press; 17 book chapters and 30 journal articles – covering topics from group relations, leadership and organisational development to social dreaming, ethics and corruption, addressing organisational relationships such as supply chain challenges in manufacturing or complex inter-departmental and inter-disciplinary relationships in government and public service.
I recently had the privilege of delivering the 2019 OPUS Eric Miller Memorial Lecture on Introjective Identification: the consultant’s instrument; the consultant’s nemesis.
Sher, M. (2019). ‘Social Spaces for Social Dreaming’. In S. Long & J. Manley (eds.) Social Dreaming Philosophy, Research, Theory and Practice. Routledge. pp. 155-166.
Brissett, L. & Sher, M. (2019). A Tavistock Primer on Board Dynamics. London: Karnac. (In Press).
Prasad, A. & Sher, M. (2019). Morning Reflections, dreams and associations at the Belgirate Conference, 2015. In: E. Aram et al. Doing the Business of Group Relations Conferences: Exploring the Discourse. Vol. 5. Pg. 213-223. Routledge.
Sher, M. (2015). ‘The Oedipus Complex, Creativity and the Legacies of Group Relations’ Intellectual Parents‘. In: E. Aram, R. Baxter & A. Nutkevitch (eds.). Group Relations Work: exploring the impact and relevance within and beyond its network. Volume IV. pp. 3-20. London: Karnac Books.
Sher, D. & Sher, M. (2015). ‘Understanding and working with the psychodynamics of practitioner-patient relationships in the manual therapies’. Journal of Bodywork & Movement Therapies. Vol. 20, pp. 1-7.
Buzaityte Kasalyniene, J. & Sher, M. (2015). ‘Developing a Group Relations Institution in Lithuania’. In: E. Aram, R. Baxter & A. Nutkevitch (Eds.). Group Relations Work: exploring the impact and relevance within and beyond its network. Vol. IV. Pg. 125-138. London: Karnac Books.
Sher, M. (2015). ‘A Partnership of Policing and Health Systems: containing the dynamics of sexual violence’. In: D. Armstrong and M. Rustin (Eds.), Social Defences Against Anxiety: explorations in a paradigm. Tavistock Clinic series. London: Karnac Books.
Özdemir, H. & Sher, M. (2014). ‘Group Relations Work in China – Challenges, Risks & Impact for Organisational Development’, Challenging Organisations & Society. Vol. 3. No. 1. pp. 5012-517.
Sher, M (2013) The Dynamics of Change: Tavistock Approaches to Improving Social Systems. London: Karnac Books.