General Stanley McChrystal Headshot
Report a problem with this profile
[email protected]

General Stanley McChrystal    

Former Commander of the United States Armed Forces Afghanistan and Founder of the Aspen Institute's Franklin Project

A transformational leader with a remarkable record of achievement, General Stan McChrystal (Ret.) was called “one of America’s greatest warriors” by Secretary of Defense Robert Gates. General McChrystal co-founded McChrystal Group in January 2011 to deliver innovative leadership solutions to American businesses in order to help them transform and succeed in challenging, dynamic environments. As a co-founder and partner, General McChrystal serves as an advisor to senior executives at multinational corporations. In this role he shares and applies the best leadership lessons and experiences from his time in service with McChrystal Group clients. He brings a unique background of honing latent talent in organizations, as well as leading cultural change.

A retired four-star general, he is the former commander of US and International Security Assistance Forces (ISAF) Afghanistan and the former commander of the nation’s premier military counter-terrorism force, Joint Special Operations Command (JSOC). He is best known for developing and implementing the current counter-insurgency strategy in Afghanistan, and for creating a comprehensive counter-terrorism organization that revolutionized the interagency operating culture.

General McChrystal is a graduate of West Point and the US Naval War College. He also completed fellowships at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government in 1997 and the Council on Foreign Relations in 2000.

Throughout his military career, General McChrystal held several leadership and staff positions, including commanding the 75th Ranger Regiment. After 9/11 until his retirement in 2010, General McChrystal spent more than 7 years deployed to combat in a variety of leadership positions. In 2002, he was the chief of staff for military operations in Afghanistan. From 2003 to 2008, General McChrystal commanded JSOC, where he led the US Military’s counter-terrorism efforts worldwide. From the summer of 2008 until June 2009, General McChrystal was the Director of the Joint Staff, where he assisted the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff in advising the President and Secretary of Defense and helped direct the management of the Joint Staff. In June 2009, the President of the United States and the Secretary General of NATO appointed General McChrystal to be the Commander of US Forces Afghanistan and NATO ISAF. His command included more than 150,000 troops from 45 allied countries. On August 1, 2010 General McChrystal retired from the US Army.

General McChrystal is a senior fellow at Yale University’s Jackson Institute for Global Affairs, where he teaches a course on Leadership in Operation. He also sits on the board of the Franklin Project, Navistar International Corporation, and JetBlue. He is a highly sought-after speaker, giving speeches on leadership to organizations around the country. General McChrystal’s memoir, My Share of the Task, was a New York Times bestseller in 2013, and his next book, "Team of Teams: New Rules of Engagement in a Complex World," written along with Teddy Collins, David Silverman, and Chris Fussell, is due to be released in May 2015.

General McChrystal is a passionate advocate for national service and veterans issues. He serves as the Chair of the Franklin Project at the Aspen Institute. In this capacity, he advocates for a future in which a year of full-time national service—a service year—is a cultural expectation, a common opportunity, and a civic rite of passage for every young American.

Speech Topics

Lessons in Leadership

In dynamic presentations on leadership, General Stan McChrystal shares lessons based on leading and innovating one of the world’s largest organizations. Modern warfare and business demand the same no-nonsense leadership that drives change and implements it across large organizations. He reveals the power of culture, communication, and relationships, sharing stories, experiences, and principles that make his points. Using high-end visuals, McChrystal addresses such key leadership principles as transparency and inclusion, leveraging the power of teams through relationships, leading by influence, relentless mission focus, and sharing a clear vision with everyone who must execute against it.

The Changing Geopolitical Landscape

Few people have as much insight on the current state of national and global affairs as General McChrystal. In this insightful presentation, he examines today’s most pressing questions regarding the dynamic geopolitical environment. He investigates and analyzes the trends, relationships, and forces that shape the world. He details the implications that these factors will have on the security, politics, energy, and the global population.

Moderated Conversations on Leadership or Geopolitical Issues

For the right audiences, General McChrystal will have a conversation with a moderator or business leader that leads to custom insights and dynamic wide-ranging conversations tailored to the audience. This intimate format lends itself to McChrystal’s candid insights, responses, and stories, which draw the audience in and make them part of the dialogue. From lessons learned to observations on current events and the future, McChrystal shares perspectives gained through one of the most legendary military careers, as well as his experiences with business, teaching, and public service.

Related Speakers View all

More like General