Topics are personal & interpersonal effectiveness, leadership, teamwork, and management.

Dan Coughlin

In 1998, Dan Coughlin founded, The Coughlin Company, Inc., a firm focused on educating for-profit and nonprofit executives to consistently deliver excellence in management, leadership, and teamwork. He serves primarily as a teacher and coach on leadership and management excellence.

His client list includes McDonald’s, Toyota, Kiewit Corporation, Affiliated Distributors, Marriott, BJC HealthCare, Coca-Cola, GE, Anheuser-Busch InBev, McCarthy Building Companies, Shell Oil, RE/MAX, Subway, Abbott, Prudential, Boeing, Cisco Systems, American Cancer Society, and the St. Louis Cardinals. Since 1998 he has worked with more than 200 organizations.

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Latest Article
Essential Walk #16: Awareness & Acceptance

Volume 22, Issue No. 11b, July 15, 2024


Click here for a longer list of Dan’s Clients.

Colliers International

Dan Coughlin’s coaching helped me to transform my business. Together, we developed processes and systems that I was able to immediately put to work which have enhanced training, recruiting, retention and business execution. I highly recommend working with Dan if you are a business owner, an entrepreneur or interested in becoming one!
Ward Richmond
Executive Vice President
Colliers International

McDonald's USA

I have had the pleasure of working with Dan Coughlin for 4 years. He has a unique ability to provide both individual and group development. As my Business Coach he has developed tools that I use which challenge my thought process and enhance the effectiveness of my decisions. While his perspective is wide ranging, he also is very effective with specific situations. He customizes processes based on your specific needs and then stays focused on using the process effectively to help you achieve the desired result. He does a thorough job of understanding his audience when working with a group. The amount of prework and preparation including getting to know each player has been very effective. His style of coaching leaves the group feeling that they solved the issue and truly own the process. Dan's ability to partner with an organization through focusing on opportunity is one of his many strengths that help you get to the result.

Lee Renz
McDonald's USA
Central Division President


Dan, I want to thank you for the tremendous job you did presenting at our recent GE Capital Retail Finance Leadership meeting. Your session, Accelerate Your Strengths: Practical Ideas to Boost Business Momentum, provided numerous insights for the team to work on personally, and actionable ideas for them to take back and implement into the organization. The extensive pre-session research you conducted into our organization prior to our meeting proved to be a great investment of your time. In addition to our conversations, you spoke with 12 members of our group on the phone, received e-mail input from more than 25 attendees, and spent five hours at our Merriam, Kansas site to learn more about the Retail Finance business. You were able to take learnings from those interactions and seamlessly weave them into your session, which made it all the more impactful.

Cynthia Tragge-Lakra
GE Capital Retail Finance
Senior Vice-President

BJC HealthCare

Dan, on behalf of the entire leadership community at BJC HealthCare, I want to thank you for your inspiring keynote session. The top 300 leaders in our organization greatly benefited from your messages and actionable steps presented during your 'Lead the Way' presentation. Personally, I enjoyed the way you connected the tenants of leadership between today's leaders and historical leaders whose styles and approaches have stood the test of time. As we continue to transform our organization, these leadership lessons will help us lead the way to success. Thank you again for a wonderful session.

Steven Lipstein
President and Chief Executive Officer
BJC HealthCare


Dan, on behalf of the entire Toyota Financial Services Team, I'd like to personally thank you for your keynote presentation at this year's National Sales Conference. You left an outstanding impression on everyone you worked with at TFS. Your passion, follow-up and attention to detail are tremendous and helped to make this year's sales conference a success. In fact, in the feedback survey from the conference attendees, we received excellent remarks on your efforts. Thank you again for your personal commitment to accelerating TFS to even greater levels of success! Oh yes, driven by the enthusiasm generated from the sales conference, we had the best all-time month in sales of both finance and insurance products! It was great and you helped 'accelerate' us to get there!

Dave Pelliccioni
Toyota Financial Services
Group Vice-President
Sales and Marketing

American Cancer Society

Dan, I want to thank you again for your compelling presentation 'Accelerate Your Impact as a Leader' at the American Cancer Society Corporate Impact Conference. I continue to use and re-use the information and material to improve my leadership capabilities. The Conference Planning Committee, as well as my many colleagues at the session, agreed that your practical advice, along with the Leadership Action Guide, hit the mark. As leaders, one of our primary roles is to have an impact on how other people think, and you provided excellent insight and actions to help us make that happen. After the session, many participants talked about the various styles you presented, and how this will help them tremendously in the future. Your passion on this topic, the pre-work you did in getting to know the audience, and your partnering with us along the way, are only some of the reasons for your success. We definitely walked away with a new enthusiasm in our roles as leaders. Thank you.

Marla Langenhorst
Director, Ameren and Planning Committee Member
American Cancer Society Corporate Impact Conference

Marriott International

It has been a few weeks since our Sales and Revenue Leaders meeting. As I've been speaking with members of my team around the region, I've heard them say things like, I tried my new influence skills based on the buyers personality type, and I used the agenda Dan showed us for my last meeting and I had great results. I thought I would share this with you because the sign of a great class is when people put the learnings into action. Your scores from our training survey were fabulous 5's across the board. I don't think I have ever seen such consistent scores with outstanding comments.

Nancy McHenry
Marriott International
Regional Vice-President
Sales and Marketing

Cardinal Health

On behalf of Medicine Shoppe International and our six hundred franchisees, I want to thank you for playing a key role in our National Meeting in Seattle as our keynote speaker and also leading a breakout session on branding. Your keynote address contained a message that every business owner needed to hear in today's pharmacy environment. I am also pleased that it dovetailed perfectly with my message. The quality of your remarks reflected the research and effort that you put into the presentation. Visiting our pharmacies as a customer and in your capacity as our keynote speaker allowed you to personalize your address. I believe that your personalization resonated with our franchisees, giving your presentation more meaning and more impact. Your connection with our franchisees was also evident in your breakout session on branding. You were the only session to 'sell out.' Your keynote presentation left them wanting more, and you didn't disappoint them in your branding session. As a matter of course we debriefed the staff after the meeting soliciting feedback on a number of topics, but, most importantly, the speakers. For the record, you received the most comments and they were all very positive. Thank you for contributing to the success of our National Meeting.

John Fiacco
Vice President
Medicine Shoppe International, a Cardinal Health company

The Coca-Cola Company

Dan, just wanted to say how much I enjoyed your keynote address at the Denny's Franchisee Association (DFA) annual meeting in Maui. You delivered on your opening promise that your keynote would provide all of the attendees with some practical, user-friendly ideas that everyone can use right away to improve results for their respective organizations. You gave the audience a variety of practical and powerful ideas that we can all turn to and use at any time to strengthen our thinking time, enthusiasm, and sense of purpose. You also shared some useful ideas on continuous improvement; most notably, the importance of stopping less effective action on a lot of good activities in order to focus time and energy on the few great activities that will have the greatest positive impact on our most important desired business outcomes. Additionally, you reminded us all of the importance of really collaborating in order to improve sustainable business results. It was wonderful meeting you and thanks again for a powerful and useful keynote speech.

Charlita Stephens-Walker
The Coca-Cola Company
National Sales Account Director

Anheuser-Busch InBev

When I first met with Dan Coughlin to talk about my team, I had no idea what I was getting into. I was surprised and ecstatic with the depth of research Dan used to plan our day-long seminar on leadership. The day flew by thanks to Dan's enthusiasm, willingness to listen, and the diverse plan of activities. Dan has a very simple approach to leadership and provided my team with some good, repeatable strategies to improve performance. The feedback I have received has been all positive. I look forward to working together with Dan in the future.

Greg Suellentrop
Anheuser-Busch InBev
North American Zone Director


Dear Dan, thank you so much for the excellent keynote leadership presentation in Houston. You really helped bring our theme of 'Making Winning Connections' to life in the way you connected with our North American Shell Retail marketing team before, during and after your session. I had many positive comments from the team about the impact your session made and the valuable takeaways that each of us will get real business benefit from as we take action on them moving forward. Your content is so practical! For me, it was an excellent reminder about leading from my own authentic leadership center, being more effective as a leadership listener. Thank you in particular for the pre-work you did gathering perspectives from the team and the effort you made to get to know the team, even by name. This greatly enhanced the effectiveness of the leadership learning event and it set a great tone for the day. I know there will be other key events that Shell will engage you for in the future. We are really striving to evolve our leadership DNA and your key messages really resonated with our team and aided us in that change journey. I would recommend your services to any growth-minded company that is serious about making a lasting impact in their leadership approach and communications.

Rick Altizer
Shell Oil Products
GM Retail Fuels Marketing for the Americas

Abbott Laboratories

Dan, I wanted to write to say thank you for a wonderful and inspiring discussion on leadership that you gave at our annual meeting. The fact that you started your talk by memorizing everyone's name really got the team's attention! I particularly appreciate the time that you took to understand what we were looking for, and to tailor your remarks to the audience. In fact, looking over our survey responses, almost everyone rated your session with the highest possible score. As we discussed, the team is already performing at a high level, and one of our goals was to keep the pedal to the metal. Your comments on continual improvement and staying motivated while motivating others are the ones that I know will resonate longest with the group. Thanks again for a great session!

Elaine Leavenworth
Government Affairs

Wheaton World Wide Moving | Bekins Van Lines

Dan, thank you for such an inspiring keynote presentation at our conference - lots of positive feedback. Our audience could tell the time you took to get to know them and our staff and understand not only our business but our culture as well. Very much appreciated. Below is a testimonial if you would like to use it with potential clients.

'Dan Coughlin is both an informative and entertaining keynote speaker with the energy to keep a crowd engaged. He took the time to get to know some of the key players within our network, interviewed our executive staff and gained a solid understanding of our business before solidifying his keynote speech. Based on the fact that we work in a complex business, these were all things we appreciated. In the end, our agents were motivated and walked away with some key, actionable items to implement at their own businesses. Coughlin was a great success.'

Mark Kirschner
Chief Executive Officer
Wheaton World Wide Moving | Bekins Van Lines

Lewis Tree Service

Dan, I am very impressed with your approach and delivery of your keynote message to our leadership team. You invested a significant amount of time with many of our leaders to obtain a clear understanding of their day to day issues and leadership challenges. The time you devoted to site visits, phone interviews and written questionnaires was more than I've ever experienced with other leadership training and presentations. Our team spoke highly of the quality of your message and the 'Leadership Action Guide' you developed for the entire team. Thank you again! If I can ever be of assistance please feel free to contact me.

Tom Rogers
Chief Executive Officer
Lewis Tree Service

Centene Corporation

Dan Coughlin doesn't just 'show up' to share his leadership development experience. He invests in the organization where he chooses to partner. My entire Brand Building organization walked away from his keynote session motivated, inspired, and armed for action. He doesn't offer platitudes or generalizations. Instead, he offers specific actions to take, personalized for each individual in the room. His actions have helped me develop more engaged, more efficient employees. If you ever have the chance to hear him speak, I would encourage you not to miss it: because Dan truly believes in making you better.

Dave Minifie
Centene Corporation
Executive Vice-President


Coach Coughlin has been a critical component to my professional development. His coaching technique has been crucial to shaping my mindset and in doing so, he has had a huge influence on my effectiveness as a business leader. Dan’s approach to breaking down complex business problems into their core components has had a tremendous impact on my ability to successfully manage change in a high growth environment.

Managing Partner, Traffix

Destination Hotels

A note of thanks from the three of us on how your keynote session at our ENFINITy conference for Destination Hotels last week was a shining example of excellence at its best. Dan, your message, delivery, and ability to comprehend and connect with our company’s culture in such a short period of time was simply amazing. We are still receiving positive feedback on your session from our attendees. Thanks again for joining us last week and making a difference.

- Marty Stanton, Chief Information Officer
- Mark Hays, Chief Financial Officer
- Mike Shutts, Vice-President, Corporate Engineering