Curt Coffman Profile

Curt Coffman consults and presents to Fortune 100 and 500 companies, and his work spans the Western Hemisphere, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East.

A New York Times bestselling author, researcher, business scientist, consultant to the University of Denver, Fortune 100 and 500 organizations, MBA and Executive Fellow at the Daniels School of Business, Curt Coffman has invested 30+ years in the science of high-performance cultures.

Mr. Coffman virtually created the engagement movement, and is currently changing the way organizations think about their culture, their managers and their business results. His mission is to help organizations, their leaders, managers and associates to create more engaging and productive workplaces to secure the loyalty and growth of their customers and business.

As Senior Partner and Chief Science Officer of The Coffman Organization, Mr. Coffman has studied hundreds of organizations and millions of employees and customers. He was formerly the Global Practice Leader for employee and customer engagement at the Gallup Organization for 22 years.

His work launched a new era in employee and management development with First, Break All the Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers do Differently—one of the best selling management books of all time. He followed that up with another bestselling book, Follow This Path: How the World’s Greatest Organizations Drive Growth by Unleashing Human Potential. His new book (co-authored with Dr. Kathie Sorensen) is Culture Eats Strategy For Lunch: The Secret of Extraordinary Results.

An international figure in the world of management and engagement, Mr. Coffman’s work has been translated in over 40 different languages. His research and writings have appeared in the Harvard Business Review, The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Washington Post, USA Today, Business Week, Chief Executive magazine, CIO Magazine, The Economist, Fast Company, Fortune and a host of other management journals. He is currently an op-ed contributor to The New York Times.

An insightful and completely engaging speaker, Mr. Coffman has presented to thousands of groups on the topic of great cultures and their impact on individuals, families, organizational growth and engaged customers.

Mr. Coffman has been married for over 30 years, to his talented wife, Tammy. The Coffmans reside in Denver, Colorado and are the proud parents of daughters, Katie and Claire, a son, Clayton, son-in-law, Geoff, and grandson, Eli.

Curt Coffman Speaking Videos

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Curt Coffman's Speech Descriptions

First Break All the Rules: What the World's Greatest Managers Do Differently

Great managers break the rules of conventional management wisdom. In this presentation, Coffman talks about how they

· Select people based on talent, not experience, skills and knowledge

· Focus people using clarity of desired outcomes, not steps or processes

· Motivate people through the discovery of strengths versus fixing weaknesses

· Create growth by finding the right “fit” between the person’s talents and demands of the role

· Get really close to people and believe relationship is what creates performance

· Play favorites and spend most of their time with the most productive people.

These are just a few of the discoveries made from a study of more than 250,000 managers/leaders. Participants come away from this very practical presentation with an outline for managing going forward.

Culture Eats Strategy for Lunch: Creating Culture as Your Competitive Advantage

There are three critical levels to great cultures—macroculture, microculture, and bridgeculture. Coffman tells audiences that top cultures have some key characteristics in common, such as being specific about practices, rituals and organizational uniqueness; having deliberate values like “paranoid collaboration,” “bad news fast,” and “fearless”; examining and moving from excellence; moving decisions as close to the action as possible; and helping everyone see how what they do attracts and keeps customers. Drawing from the concept that put Coffman on the business map, he leaves attendees with specific steps they can take to change their organization’s culture for the better.

Creating a Place Where People Just Can’t Wait to Come to Work Every Day

This keynote comes from the study of more than one million employees and what attracts, engages and energizes them. Bottom-line results show that having a clear focus, great manager, the right talent and quality relationships are the keys to personal and professional success. Coffman helps attendees understand what contributes to a desirable employee culture:

· Being a part of a team that has high standards and expectations

· Constantly raising the bar for themselves and others

· Having best friends at work

Coffman says that people leave managers not companies. Great managers are the foundation of great organizations. How we select, focus and recognize managers can be the best predictor of results. Great managers of people have strange practices like playing favorites of high performers, getting very close to the people that report to them, firing people faster than bad managers out of genuine respect for the person and customizing plans to fit the needs of each person.

Other Topics Include:

  • Discarding Ineffective Customer Strategies and Adopting What Works
  • Managing the Emotional Side of Customer Engagement
  • Human Sigma—Managing the Human Difference
  • Employee Engagement, Development, and Retention
  • Building Organic Growth
  • What's Hot and What's Not in Business & Management
  • The 7 Unforgivable Acts of Leadership
  • Finding and keeping talented people
  • Managing employees and customers in the new "emotional economy"
  • What People are Saying about Seeing Curt Speak

    Rating Entries

    Select Clients Include:

  • Allergan
  • AM Castle
  • AORN
  • ANCC—Magnet Nursing
  • ASQ
  • AT&T
  • Amgen
  • Asia Pacific HR Council
  • AstraZeneca
  • BP
  • British Aerospace
  • Ernst and Young
  • Federal Reserve Bank
  • Genentech
  • General Motors
  • Johnson & Johnson
  • Kellogg’s
  • Kraft Foods
  • Lexus
  • Medtronic
  • Mega Life Sciences
  • MetLife
  • NCR
  • New York Life
  • Principal Financial
  • Quest Diagnostics
  • Ritz-Carlton
  • SHRM
  • SkillSoft
  • Sprint
  • Tata Group
  • Toyota
  • UBS
  • UCB
  • United Technologies
  • Veterans Administration
  • Waldorf Astoria
  • Wells Fargo
  • YPO
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    Books by Curt Coffman:

    First, Break All the Rules: What the World’s Greatest Managers Do Differently
    The greatest managers in the world seem to have little in common. They differ in sex, age, and race. They employ vastly different styles and focus on different goals. Yet despite their differences, great managers share one common trait: They do not hesitate to break virtually every rule held sacred by conventional wisdom. They do not believe that, with enough training, a person can achieve anything he sets his mind to. They do not try to help people overcome their weaknesses. They consistently disregard the golden rule. And, yes, they even play favorites. This amazing book explains why.

    Marcus Buckingham and Curt Coffman of the Gallup Organization present the remarkable findings of their massive in-depth study of great managers across a wide variety of situations. Some were in leadership positions. Others were front-line supervisors. Some were in Fortune 500 companies; others were key players in small, entrepreneurial companies. Whatever their situations, the managers who ultimately became the focus of Gallup’s research were invariably those who excelled at turning each employee’s talent into performance.

    In today’s tight labor markets, companies compete to find and keep the best employees, using pay, benefits, promotions, and training. But these well-intentioned efforts often miss the mark. The front-line manager is the key to attracting and retaining talented employees. No matter how generous its pay or how renowned its training, the company that lacks great front-line managers will suffer.

    Buckingham and Coffman explain how the best managers select an employee for talent rather than for skills or experience; how they set expectations for him or her—they define the right outcomes rather than the right steps; how they motivate people—they build on each person’s unique strengths rather than trying to fix his weaknesses; and, finally, how great managers develop people—they find the right fit for each person, not the next rung on the ladder. And perhaps most important, this research—which initially generated thousands of different survey questions on the subject of employee opinion—finally produced the twelve simple questions that work to distinguish the strongest departments of a company from all the rest. This book is the first to present this essential measuring stick and to prove the link between employee opinions and productivity, profit, customer satisfaction, and the rate of turnover.

    There are vital performance and career lessons here for managers at every level, and, best of all, the book shows you how to apply them to your own situation.

    Follow this Path: How the World’s Greatest Organizations Drive Growth by Unleashing Human Potential
    When it comes to getting ahead in business, The Gallup Organization has led the way with two landmark books: The New York Times and The Wall Street Journal bestsellers First, Break All the Rules and Now, Discover Your Strengths. In its latest guide the world’s hottest management consulting firm reveals your company’s most valuable asset-and, with groundbreaking new findings and methods, shows you how developing that asset can lead to a quantum leap in cost efficiencies and profits.

    What do the world’s greatest organizations have in common? They know that their most valuable resource is human—their employees and customers. And the best companies understand two important facts: people are emotional first and rational second, and because of that, employees and customers must be emotionally engaged in order for the organization to reach its full potential. Gallup research not only bears that out, but has uncovered the secrets of creating and managing an “emotional economy” that will provide boom possibilities for your company.

    Follow this Path shows you how the traditional ways to engage people no longer apply in today’s world. Instead, it offers a system it calls The Gallup Path, based on the proven, revolutionary strategies of the most successful businesses. You’ll learn the prerequisites of an effective workplace, forge unbreakable bonds between employees and customers with the book’s 34 Routes to Superior Performance, know the three crucial links that drive productivity and growth, discover the best employee and customer motivators, and much more.

    Ignore the emotional economy—and miss out on financial performance. Helping you build relationships one customer and one employee at a time, this important book offers a unique new path for your organization to follow. All you have to do is value and develop human relationships all around you to transform your business—starting today.

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