Driving success with Chris Coultas

Oct 5, 2020

Chris W. Coultas, PhD, has devoted his career to helping leaders, teams, and organizations optimize engagement and performance by conducting cutting-edge research in leadership, assessment, development, coaching, and talent management. The director of science and research at Leadership Worth Following, he has authored several peer-reviewed publications on coaching, leadership, and teams, and is passionate about uncovering new ways to empower organizations and individuals to reach their full potential.

Read on to learn more about Chris, and his spring 2021 release, Driven Not Drained, co-authored with Leadership Worth Following.

Which three words best describe you?
Creative, hard-working, optimistic.

What is your book about?
This book is about you! Driven Not Drained is about what drives and drains your energy at work, and how you can better leverage your drivers for maximum success—primarily in your career but more broadly, too.

Whom do you most admire?
Jesus of Nazareth. No matter what you believe, the example he provides and the effect he had on history is incredible. And now, more than ever, we all need to be reminded to serve, forgive, and love others.

What is the last book you read?
The Culture Code by Daniel Coyle. Before that: Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman.

How do you spend your down time?
My wife and I are expecting our first child in October, so any “down time” I might have is generally spent prepping the nursery, finishing various house projects, and enjoying these last few months of alone time with my wife. Beyond that, I like to brainstorm different ideas for new products, new ways to serve clients, and new solutions to old problems.

Who are your favorite authors?
Researchers and authors like Daniel Kahneman, Philip Tetlock, and Dan Pink come to mind. Science should have some direct or indirect practical benefit to society. Politicians, businesses, and everyday people are the “consumers” of research. Doing incredible research is difficult enough, but communicating that research in a way that consumers will find digestible, engaging, and applicable is a completely different skill set.

What is the best advice you’ve ever received?
Be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry.

What is your personal motto?
If I were to sum up how I try to approach work and life, it would be: Work hard, be creative, tell the truth, forgive easily.

Where do you find inspiration?
I get most of my insights from paying attention to problems, and allowing myself to be curious about solutions. I also love brainstorming solutions to these problems with friends and colleagues. If there is a seemingly intractable problem, there is a solution there somewhere.  Wrestle with it, stay curious, and the insights will come!