Mark Byford


consultant name

Mark Byford Egon Zehnder, London


Mark Byford, based in London, advises global life sciences, consumer, and financial services companies on CEO succession, the C-suite, and talent management strategy. Mark also advises publicly-listed and family companies on board issues, diversity and inclusion, and building their presence in emerging markets. Mark’s work has carried him to over thirty countries across Europe, Asia, North America, and South America. He was closely involved in developing many of Egon Zehnder’s talent management offerings, in particular its proprietary approach to Accelerated Integration and currently co-leads the AI practice globally. Mark is known for carefully tailoring solutions for clients, marshaling different combinations the firm’s proprietary solutions and collective experience to achieve the maximum impact. He is active in Egon Zehnder’s CEO, Health, and Human Resources Practices.


Prior to joining Egon Zehnder, Mark was with Boston Consulting Group where he consulted globally for major pharmaceutical companies on commercial strategy in asthma, migraine, and HIV, and helped with R&D projects, such as clinical trial effectiveness and organization design for the research, development, and commercial functions. Mark also played a leading role in developing BCG’s global post-merger-integration practice, serving clients in pharmaceuticals, the film and music industries, plastics, and oil refining. Mark started his career as a junior fellow at Oxford University, where he researched and taught sixteenth-century history.

Mark earned a first-class degree in Modern History from New College at Oxford University, a DPhil in Sixteenth-century History from Oxford, and an MBA from INSEAD in Fontainebleau, France. Mark is Honorary Secretary of the New College Society, the alumni organization for New College at Oxford, and is a trustee for an educational trust, organizing summer reading parties of Oxford students in the French Alps. He serves on the board of the Friends of Lambeth Palace Library, which holds the historic library and archives of the Archbishops of Canterbury.

News and Publications

Onboarding Isn’t Enough: Executives Need To Be Fully Integrated Into Your Culture

Onboarding is an apt term for how many companies support new leaders’ transitions, because – like helping someone onto a ship – there’s not much more to the process than bringing the executive safely on deck. From there on, he or she is expected to know what to do or sort it out with little or no guidance.

The early exit of Manchester United's manager will resonate in Corporate Boardrooms, says Mark Byford

Early exits often arise from disappointment that the outcomes fall well short of what was hoped for, and perhaps promised, at the start. Yet for global companies, the stakes are high, which is why more needs to be done to help new leaders hit the ground running, and accelerate their ability to deliver results.

Financial Times - Executive integration: a tough challenge

The importance of successful onboarding has long been widely recognized, writes Maxine Boersma in the Financial Times. But a recent Egon Zehnder survey of over 500 leaders revealed that 57 percent of executives believe it took them 6+ months to reach full impact when they last changed functions.

The Sunday Times - “The Young lead a charge to the top”

With the younger generation rising up the corporate ladder into top roles earlier than ever before, companies need to re-think how they approach developing and training the next generation of leadership talent.

Dow Jones - Integration Gives Global Leaders a Strong Start

As companies go global they need an increasingly diverse array of leaders to help them access new markets. But, according to Mark Byford, a consultant at Egon Zehnder, London, there are pitfalls in this approach.

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Building a Sustainable Leadership Pipeline in Asia

Economies across Asia have been growing at unprecedented rates in recent years, and yet the supply of leaders to sustain that growth has been far harder to ramp up at anything like the same pace.

Accelerated Integration Practice Profile

Egon Zehnder’s experts in Accelerated Integration can help you halve the time usually required for new executives to reach full effectiveness.

consultant name

Mark Byford Egon Zehnder, London