Featured Instigator – Chris Edmonds

by  Paula Kiger  |  Meet Lead Change
Featured Instigator – Chris Edmonds

This month we are featuring Chris Edmonds, Founder and CEO of the Purposeful Culture Group.

Chris received his BA from Whittier College, a secondary teaching credential from California Lutheran College, and a Masters of Human Resources and Organizational Development from the University of San Francisco. He has served as an Adjunct Professor at the University of San Diego School of Business since 2000.

He has been a non-profit executive for 15 years, and a speaker, author, and executive consultant for 25 years. He is the author or co-author of seven books and two manifestos. His most recent book, The Culture Engine, helps leaders create workplace inspiration with an organizational constitution. It was listed by Motto as one of the 6 best branding books for entrepreneurs. He shares, “having my own hardcover book published by one of the top five publishers on the planet” is one of his best ever professional moments.

When asked about one leadership lesson he learned from his first job, he said: “Leaders don’t need to be liked but they need to be respected for fairness, kindness, and consistency.”

When asked about the strangest question he’s ever been asked in a job interview, Chris tells us he was asked, “How tall are you?”.

The book Built to Last by Collins and Porras is a favorite. Chris said it has been the most helpful book for his professional life, an epiphany in fact!

One thing we can count on from our Instigators is an abundance of creativity. We asked Chris about the most creative solution he’s ever seen to a problem. He responded, “sending a player whose bad behavior was impeding team progress and success home for the day. No discussion, just ‘go home.'” Chris says, “it was a shock to them and to us — and it didn’t repair all the bad behavior. It did get the team back on track that day.”

One of Chris’s favorite quotes is:

Be for things in life – it’s too exhausting to be against them.
~ Ruth Gordon as Maude in Harold & Maude

If money was no object, Chris said he would “play music”! He’s a working musician on the side. (Check his music out here.)

When considering the important qualities of leaders, Chris believes that service — a servant heart and servant actions — are the most important.

One question we ask our featured Instigators is “What is the one thing that should be taught in schools that isn’t already?”Chris believes students should be taught that positive values in the workplace are as important as results.

If he had to hashtag his life, Chris’s would be: #valuesmatter.

Chris says the best advice he’s ever been given was “slow down, listen, and learn from your team members.”

Thank you, Chris, for “slowing down” long enough to answer the featured instigator questions. We enjoyed learning more about you!

Editor’s Note – You may ask, “How does one get chosen to be a featured Instigator?” The answer is simple. If you are already an Instigator, fill out this form and continue to engage with the Lead Change Group on a regular basis. If you are not yet an Instigator, sign up. There are many benefits to being an Instigator – email us if you want more information.

Previous Featured Instigators:

1/2016: Marcella Bremer

12/2015: John Stoker

11/2015: Sean Glaze

Do you have a question for Chris? If so, ask him in the comments!

About The Author

Articles By paula-kiger
Paula worked for almost twenty years for Florida’s State Child Health Insurance Program. She is currently doing freelance work in the communications industry. Her Twitter bio describes her best: wife of one, mom of two, friend of many.  »  View Profile

What People Are Saying

Jane  |  12 Feb 2016  |  Reply

Chris, your book, The Culture Engine descubes and instructs leaders in the discipline and practice of designing, implementing, and operating their organizations from the foundation of a constitution. Knowing that you live and breathe it every day, how would you boil that down to personal responsibility and accountability. You travel, speak, consult, have a family and a dog. You’re a musician at heart. In all this diversity how do you fit it in?

Chris Edmonds  |  12 Feb 2016  |  Reply

Thanks for your kind words and amazing support, Jane! You boiled it down for me – “personal responsibility and accountability.” I’d add “in service to others.” Life is too short to be in competition with everyone and everything around us. That approach is exhausting – and that race is never won. I had remarkable role models (good and bad) that helped me understand this was the best path for me – and I coach, counsel, and guide others to live the same way.



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