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Meredith Valdez

Program manager

Meredith serves on the marketing team, guiding content creation efforts and helping the firm and our clients tell their transformation stories. Prior to Kotter, she was a grant writer and ghost writer and enjoyed many years in higher education enrollment services, where she worked with students to determine their next big leaps in life. Endless fun was teaching a professional development course that prepared students for their first internships. She graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Business Administration in Marketing and earned an MBA with a dual emphasis in Negotiation + Mediation and Marketing; both from Belmont University in Nashville, TN.

Meredith is based out of the Seattle, WA office.

Why did you decide to work at Kotter?

It was a happy collision of timing and circumstance. Life shifts had created space to explore a different professional direction and I became emboldened to try something new. When an opportunity here crossed my path, that name – it was so familiar. Kotter, Kotter…as in the Kotter we studied in graduate school? (That was the one.) I was hooked from the first conversation.

What in your background helps you in this job?

In higher ed, I met face-to-face with over 1,000 students each year to help them contemplate their futures and plan their next steps. I learned a few things, namely that everyone has a set of experiences, patterns of behavior, and at least an inkling of a vision for what the future could be. As we work to tell the stories of our clients’ transformations, it’s useful to note the parallels. Organizations are not filled with roles and functions. They’re made up of individuals – beating hearts who have a set of experiences, patterns of behavior, and at least an inkling of a vision for what the future could be. Our work is powerful in a collective sense. At the end of the day, though, people take it into their lives – it’s enormously personal.

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

We mean it when we say that we practice what we preach. We become our own client, applying the fullness of our intellectual property to the firm. I’ve had the privilege of co-facilitating Kotter’s internal Guiding Coalition and co-leading a Results Accelerator team. The urgency, engagement, and results achieved at client sites – they’ve come true for us too, fueling our belief in what’s possible.

What’s got you thinking right now?

Simplicity. Minimalism. White space. As the modern world moves faster, more seems to be deemed better. I’m fascinated by the discipline to limit, to reduce, to pause. It’s cross-culture in some respects, but I am curious to explore how living with a laser-focus, both personally and professionally, might actually make more possible with less.

Share something about you that would most surprise people.

If we stop for coffee, I’m likely to pull a cup out of my bag. (Or a spoon if it’s ice cream, chopsticks for sushi…) I have a heart for conservation and the Zero Waste movement has changed many of my behaviors.