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About Kelly

Kelly Odell as a speaker

Kelly Odell on Change, Leadership, Motivation and Employee Engagement

Kelly exudes a genuine warmth and commitment that inspires and enthuses his audiences. One participant said after hearing Kelly speak that “it wasn’t a lecture, it wasn’t a show, it was an experience!”. He fascinates audiences from start to finish as he tackles many of the most widely held “beliefs” about management, leadership, motivation, and employee engagement and turns them inside out.

Everyone recognizes themselves in the stories that Kelly shares from his own life. Kelly’s focus  is on understanding and integrating the needs of the individual and the needs of the organization. His audiences are not only inspired to become better managers and better employees, they are also equipped with practical, implementable tips and ideas that they can begin working with immediately. Kelly helps employees understand their roles and their purpose and he helps managers get people on board and keep them there. 

Kelly Odell


Kelly is an outstanding speaker with a disarming honesty and contagious humor that goes straight to the hearts and minds of any audience.  A true storyteller, Kelly draws on his own long experience in global organizations to exemplify key concepts in the areas of leadership, employee engagement, change and motivation. Kelly delivers pragmatic, executable insights that lead to real improvement in individual and organizational performance.


In this counter-intuitive book for managers “The Human Way – The Ten Commandments for (Im)Perfect Leaders, Kelly argues that no one is perfect and that success as a leader is not about being perfect and always doing the right thing; it is about accepting your own humanity and adopting a number of down-to-earth attitudes and values. 

Read a few of the early reviews of “The Human Way” here:

This book is one of the most “genuine” leadership books I have seen. Kelly Odell presents a very honest and pragmatic perspective based to a great extent on his own growth as a leader.  Having worked closely with Kelly for many years, I see his values clearly reflected in the pages of this book. The real life values of a successful and a very human leader.

Bengt Engström, former executive  vice president of Whirlpool Corporation and former president of Fujitsu, Nordic

There are a few things I look for in a good business book, a strong premise, great insight and actionable advice. Kelly’s book has all of these in spades and it all adds up to a great book that I can highly  recommend.  

Kevin Jackson, Director of Ideas and Innovation, The Experience is the Marketing, President of ILEA UK 

How can you not love a book that preaches humility as a leader and at the same time encourages you to never be afraid to tell your company to go to hell!

Micael Dahlén, Professor of Economics, Stockholm School of Economics 


Through his company Astrakan Strategic Management Training, Kelly and his colleagues have educated managers and employees for more than 20 years in a broad range of areas such as leadership and communication, project management, change management, business development, systems development and much more.

Kellys Courses

The Human Way

The Human Way

Have you heard it all before? Looking for something new – beyond tools and models? The human way is a 3 day workshop of co-creation facilitated by Kelly Odell.

Together we take on the challenge of people, power and relations. Territories where there are no easy answers but you still need to find an approach and philosophy as a leader. To choose your way to lead; with roots in your organization’s purpose and values as well as your function. To strive toward a state of conciousness where you can take a step back and reason before you take action.

When it comes down to business our actions as leaders always rings louder than words. Actions gives us momentum. Actions show what you demand of yourself and sets an example of what kind of behavior you expect.
– And that’s also why it’s important to find smarter ways to reason before we act.

Read more about the course: The Human Way at Astrakan.se

Leadership development

Leadership development

  • Transformational leadership – Develop the leadership behaviors that according to research lead to an increase in company profit as well as improved motivation and performance among team members.
  • Performance management and continuos improvement through process development and behavioral change. (

Programs tailored to your needs with OBM

We think of all training as a change initiative and apply the principles of organizational behavior management (OBM) when we design our programs. We break down your goals into supporting and key behaviors that need to be developed or increased in frequency in order for you to succeed as individuals as well as an organization.

The learning experience

We believe in case based experiential learning. When applicable we prefer to use sharp examples from your real life situation as foundation for our exercises and workshops. Otherwise we use case studies or fictitious cases – often you get to follow the same one all through the training occasion.

Read more about the course: Leadership Development at Astrakan.se

Change Leadership

Change Leadership

  • Change Management – Approach change methodically; from establishing a sense of urgency and implementation to sustainability and readiness for future change.
  • Learn how to handle the most common challenges; lack of support from the board, apathy or resistance among employees, lack of resources and communication.

Change leadership and readiness

Change leadership is about creating an agile and vigilant organization – ready to seize opportunities and craft the future of the company. To go from an emergent need of change to a state of continuos improvement, empowerment and change readiness.

Our program for Change Leaders provides tools, tactics and an 8-step method that supports you through the process of change management and the vision of an organization steeped in the climate of change.

Read more about the course: Change Leadership at Astrakan.se



Kelly is an amazing speaker! He always get’s the attention and he always delivers top quality speeches in any topic in the area of leadership, management and communication! My profession is to arrange conferences and Kelly really stands out! He has a fantastic leadership experience and a really interesting background and he always know the right way to adress any audience!”

Patrik Jonsson, Senior Project Manager at IBC Euroforum


Kelly’s most popular topics


In his lectures on leadership Kelly challenges many of the most widely held “beliefs” about leadership and brings modern leadership theory to life with examples from his own work experience. He helps managers understand how to get their people on board and keep them there by balancing the “human” needs of the individuals with the needs of the organization as a whole.

Change Management

In one of Kelly’s most popular speeches “Are You Sailing with the Wind of Change or Just Getting Blown Around?” Kelly helps organizations understand how they can radically improve their change management efforts in order to belong to the few who truly achieve real and lasting change.

Job Satisfaction

“For Better, for Worse”: In this thought provoking and humorous lecture Kelly sheds light on one of our most important relationships, the relationship between the employee and the employer. Like any relationship this relationship has its ups and downs. Good relationships are ones where all parties get more out of the relationship than they are putting into it. Kelly helps the audience understand how to maximize the ups and minimize the downs.  

Kelly Odell as a speaker

Kelly is a gifted storyteller and combines a strong grasp of the subject matter with iss own vast experience to bring theory to life. He has been called the master of metaphors for his ability to use practical everyday examples to clarify complex situations.

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