Eric Ellis


Eric Ellis


Eric is a people strategist with significant experience in the areas of organizational change, training and development, and employment practice development. He has translated his passion for human behavior into an 18-year career working for such noted software companies as MathWorks, HubSpot and WorldCare Inc. For many years Eric’s role involved helping employees deal with the “.com” bust of the early 2000’s. This intersection of innovation and failure was a rich place to grow professionally. Eric became passionate about Design Thinking after reading, “The Creativity Crisis”, Newsweek 2010. He found this new definition of creativity to be unique and loaded with potential for innovation in the corporate world. He has a BS in Music, and an MBA in Design Thinking from California College of the Arts. He is also certified in Meyers Briggs and is a Level 1 & 2 certified Emotional Intelligence facilitator. Eric is a fan of Carol Stanford and believes that her research and writing about sustainable business is the future of work. It is Carole’s quote, “…developing employees is about drawing out, lifting up, and developing the inherent capacity of people to lead and create” which he finds best describes his point of view in his work.

Eric is based out of Nashville, TN.

Why did you decide to work at Kotter?

The humanity of it all. Beyond the science is a heart and passion for people.

What is the biggest impact you’ve seen take place at a client?

Quantifiable business results provide an opportunity to engage organizations in change. For instance; reducing cycle times for returning customer’s financing by 82% was a real motivator for both senior leaders and naysayers in a recent organization. When the softer side of change is coupled with hard core results it’s hard not to get on board for the journey.

Who is your favorite leader / leadership expert?

I am a big fan of what Angela Duckworth is doing around passion and perseverance. Her lens of change, at the personal/human level is intriguing when trying to imagine it at scale in an organization.

What challenges do you most enjoy helping your clients solve?

We work with broken or aging business models quite often, business models which seem to trap innovation and success so it is very satisfying to see individuals or groups come to a realization that they can change the situation. Success which surprises people is always fun to watch!

What in your background helps you in this job?

Several years of improvisational dance and acting class helps me almost on a weekly basis. It is important to be responsive, light on your feet and able to adapt to any situation.

What’s got you thinking right now?

The beauty described in Michael Booth’s book, Super Sushi Ramen Express is inspiring. The precision and artistry of Japanese food preparation is something to aspire to. How can a change consulting firm own that same sense of professionalism and commitment to their art?