After 25 years of leading positions in travel and airline business, Jan Carlzon has earned a reputation as a market oriented innovator, a turn-around specialist who has returned three companies to profitability within an eight-year period, and a corporate leader whose philosophies about strategic leadership and staff motivation have been imitated world-wide.
Carlzon joined Vingresor, one of Europe’s largest tour operators in 1967, and became its President in 1974.
In 1978 Carlzon was enrolled as President of loss-making Linjeflyg, the Swedish domestic airline, which he returned to profitability.
Carlzon was called in to rescue SAS after three years at Linjeflyg. The history repeated itself and within a year SAS was back in the black and earned a reputation as one of the world’s best airlines.
Carlzon has spelled out his management and staff motivation philosophies in a best-selling book, Moments of Truth, which has been translated into 18 languages and has been selected as one of the 100 Best Business Books of All Time. Since leaving SAS, Carlzon has been deeply involved in a number of business developments in Europe.
He is one of the founders and Chairman of a new European Telecommunication Service company, NETnet International SA. As of today, NETnet is located in seven countries in Europe.
Jan Carlzon is part-owner and Chairman of Karl Stockman AB and Ledstiernan, two Swedish based investment companies.
Mr. Carlzon holds honorary doctorates from Pepperdine University in California and Pacific Lutheran in Washington. He is a Commander with Star of the Royal Norwegian order of Merit and was awarded H.M. the King of Sweden’s medal of the 12th dimension with the ribbon of the order of the Seraphim. Leisure interests include golf, tennis, skiing and sailing. He is a frequent lecturer all around the world on management issues.