Allen Oelschlaeger
Allen is a conflict expert with a focus on creating safe and respectful workplaces. He is a co-founder of Vistelar, creator of the Confidence in Conflict book series and podcast, leader of the company’s e-learning initiative, and authority on how to best train the psychomotor skill of conflict management. His background includes Wharton School MBA, University of Wisconsin faculty member, and leadership roles in the healthcare industry.

I grew up in the Northwest (central Oregon, Seattle) and attended college at Washington State University. I changed majors a few times, but I ended up with degrees in biology and pharmacy (cum laude, Phi Beta Kappa, 1977), which led me to Philadelphia to participate in a hospital pharmacy residency program at Thomas Jefferson University.

I remained in Philadelphia for 6 years to practice as a hospital pharmacist and attend the Wharton School of Business (MBA, 1983). Then, for the next 12 years, my wife and I (and ultimately two great kids) lived in Indianapolis (Eli Lilly & Company), Seattle and Toronto (Physio Control), and Milwaukee (Marquette Electronics) as I ascended through various executive positions — primarily in marketing, strategy, and sales — in the medical device industry.

One of my most impactful accomplishments during this period was to help develop and lead the launch and marketing of the world’s first automatic defibrillator in 1985. Since then, with millions of these devices now in service throughout the world, countless lives have been saved with this breakthrough product.

In 1995, I shifted my career from corporate environments to the start-up world, and over the next five years, I had senior-executive positions in three venture-funded medical device companies.

With that background, I decided to quit having a “real job” in 2000 and become an entrepreneur. Since then I have been a co-founder of four companies, including Vistelar in 2009. 

Beyond my entrepreneurial experience, during the late 2000s, I was on the marketing faculty at the University of Wisconsin – Whitewater. In addition, I have published several books and have done a fair amount of professional speaking.

My first book, Finally, the Straight Scoop About Weight, Nutrition and Fitness was published in 2007, which led to ongoing research and writing about the prevalent myths concerning weight loss, eating well, and exercise and my BITE Method for never having to struggle with weight issues ever again.

I’m also the editor/author of several books in the Vistelar Confidence In Conflict series.

Today I function as a classic entrepreneur with more interests than time in the day.