Paul B. Thornton is an author, speaker, trainer, and professor of business administration at Springfield Technical Community College in Springfield, MA. At the undergraduate level, he studied management, psychology, and political science at Ohio University. In addition, he earned an MBA degree from American International College and a Master of Education degree from Suffolk University. He began playing organized hockey when he was twelve. By the time he entered Canton High School as a freshman, Paul had become good enough to make the varsity team. He was always curious to know why some teams in his league consistently excelled (unfortunately, that didn’t include his team) and others floundered. Summoning all of his teenage wisdom, he concluded that the difference was due to coaching. Early on, he began studying what the top coaches did to bring out the best in their teams and in their individual players. This sparked Paul’s lifelong interest in coaching, management, and leadership. While a student at Ohio University, he took a terrific course taught by a terrific teacher: Managing Organizational Behavior by Dr. Paul Hersey. The knowledge and passion he gained from Dr. Hersey’s class further ignited his interest in management and leadership. After graduating, no NHL teams were clamoring for his services. Paul worked a few years in sales, but that wasn’t his passion. At age twenty-seven, he accepted a teaching and coaching position (varsity hockey) at American International College. This experience gave him the opportunity to apply some of the management concepts and leadership theories he had learned in college. After teaching and coaching for five years, Paul accepted a position at the Hamilton Standard division of United Technologies. His initial job involved designing and conducting a variety of supervisory and management training programs. He rotated through several human resource functions, including recruiting, compensation, labor relations, and employee development. Paul was promoted to leadership roles, including human resources manager for approximately 2,000 employees and manager-management training and development for approximately 300 managers and leaders. This position included conducting management assessment centers, designing and delivering management and leadership programs, and coordinating the company’s succession planning and leadership development program. In 1985 and 1996, he was the recipient of a United Technologies Award for Extraordinary Management Effectiveness. After Hamilton Standard, Paul and two friends started a management consulting company called “Be the Leader Associates.” Paul has designed and conducted management and leadership programs for various companies, including Palmer Foundry, UMASS Medical School, Mercy Health Systems, Management Development International, Kuwait Oil Corporation, and United Technologies Corporation. Since 1980, he has trained over 20,000 supervisors and managers to be more effective leaders.

Paul has published articles in The Leader-to-Leader Journal, Engineering Manager, Management Review, Leadership Excellence, Electronic Engineering Times, The Toastmaster, USA Today, and The CEO Refresher. In addition, he is the author of thirteen books, which are available at amazon.com and bn.com. See below for the titles of some of his work:

Precise Leaders Get Results has received numerous 5-star reviews on amazon.com. 

Be the Leader, Make the Difference was selected as “one of the best business books of all time” by The CEO Refresher website.

 ▶ Leadership—Best Advice I Ever Got was described by Marshall Goldsmith as containing some of the best coaching on leadership you will ever receive. In addition, it was recommended as one of the “Best Leadership Books Available” on leadingtoday.org.

Paul’s email address is pthornton@stcc.edu.

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