Jeff Eggers

Organizational Performance Expert

Executive Director of the McChrystal Group Leadership Institute


Jeff Eggers is a senior policy advisor, security professional, executive coach, and leadership consultant with more than 20 years experience leading high-performing teams for the White House, Department of Defense, and U.S. Navy. A trusted advisor to senior U.S. government officials, Eggers served as President Obama’s Special Assistant for National Security Affairs, where he oversaw critical and sensitive aspects of U.S. foreign and national security policy. Eggers is a passionate advocate for evolving models of leadership that take into account 21st century dynamics including generational clashes, rapidly advancing technologies, and shifting geopolitical forces. He believes that employees need to be empowered to make decisions in real time, and that teams operating with a powerful sense of purpose and empowered execution are most successful. Exclusively represented by Leading Authorities speakers bureau, Eggers explains why humble leadership is more important than heroic leadership, why leadership’s role is to cultivate rather than control, how a sense of “we” is the common thread amongst all high-performing teams—ranging from Forumla One Racing to the Tokyo String Quartet to Navy SEALS—and why the most significant risk factors to a corporation are internal.

Jeff Eggers served for four years as the National Security Council’s Senior Director for Afghanistan and Pakistan. He now leads the McChrystal Group’s Leadership Institute, where he helps Fortune 500 clients focused on improving performance to train more effective leaders and create a culture that enables peak performance. A behavioral science researcher, Eggers draws on cultural trends, current events, anecdotes from his time as a Navy SEAL leader and lessons about human nature itself to share impactful and actionable insights on decision-making, silo elimination, teamwork, and change management.

Prior to joining McChrystal Group, Jeff worked with a diverse mix of clients across industries, including an NBA franchise where he helped with leadership succession. He retired from the U.S. Navy following a successful 20 year career as a U.S. Navy SEAL. Operational tours included positions on several SEAL Teams, commander of the Special Operations Task Unit in western Iraq, and Operations Officer and Mission Commander for the U.S. Navy’s undersea special operations command. He served as a strategic advisor on national security matters, including the mid-2013 change of mission in Afghanistan, enabling an end to the U.S. combat mission and shifting emphasis to Afghan security forces. He shepherded the negotiation and signing of the U.S.-Afghanistan Strategy Partnership Agreements, and served as a Strategic Advisor to General Stanley McChrystal, Commander of NATO ISAF. He is credited with the mediation and resolution of the 2014 Afghan presidential electoral crisis, an effort that earned him the Samuel Nelson Drew Award, presented by President Obama for “Distinguished Contribution in Pursuit of Global Peace.”

Eggers is an Adjunct Senior Analyst for the RAND Corporation and has been published in Fortune, Foreign Policy, Politico, U.S. News and World Report, and more. He has taught courses in change management, leadership, and public policy for U.S. intelligence agencies, the Foreign Service Institute, and the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies.

He is a Senior Fellow at the New America Foundation, an advisor for the Centre for Humanitarian Dialogue, a member of the NationSwell Council, and a board member of the Special Operations Fund, a non-profit that cares for and assists the families of special operations veterans killed in action.