Rachel has worked with Dr. John Kotter since before Kotter was founded. Kotter’s work delivers business-changing – and often life-changing – impact across industries and across the world, which is what she finds most inspiring. In her current role, Rachel lives the mission and vision of the company by building strategic, meaningful client partnerships and bringing the Kotter brand to market. Rachel has always believed, and will always believe that together, so much more is possible.
Rachel is based out of the Cambridge, MA office.
If you weren’t working at Kotter, what would you be doing instead?
I could name a million things I would love to do: be a programmer, an architect, an interior designer. But what I would probably actually be doing is volunteering more time at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston. The Museum is my home away from home, and if I weren’t working at Kotter, I would be spending as much time there as possible.
What challenges do you most enjoy helping your clients solve?
One of the most fun elements of my job is putting together very complex puzzles. In every situation, there are any number of moving parts that must be considered and carefully evaluated or negotiated. But, at the end of the day, human nature is always at the core, and it’s the challenge of getting to the heart of why something is happening that is so gratifying to solve. Because, if you can get at the why, the solution is so much more lasting.
What in your background helps you in this job?
My previous life as an owner of a luxury wedding planning firm honed my abilities to remain calm under pressure and see each challenge as an opportunity for a creative solution. Not only was I steeped in the day-to-day aspects of running a business – from marketing to contract negotiation to budgets and accounting – I was also at the epicenter of one of the most spotlighted moments in a family’s life. Someone once told me, “Nobody’s dead. Nobody’s dying.” I used that phrase in the most tense of wedding situations (heart attack mid-ceremony, fire in the reception, city-wide blackout anyone?) and continue to keep it as my mantra today. It keeps me grounded, and reminds me that, more often than not, things could be worse and there is most likely a reasonable solution to any problem.
What’s got you thinking right now?
As a Journalism major in college, I have a fondness for good writing and reporting. Over the past year, I have re-fallen in love with the writing and voice of Dan Rather, and currently read his posts daily.
Share something about you that would most surprise people.
I have a penchant for reading manuals, and I love to master anything technology or computer related. When I was three, my father bought his first Apple computer. My father took me to the computer show in Boston, where he picked up his Macintosh. He brought it home, unboxed it, and tried to figure out how to turn the thing on. I walked around the back and flipped the power button, to which he asked, “How did you know how to do that?” I replied, “Elmo taught me!” And, thus began my love of technology.