About Us

If you’re the parent of a pre-teen or teen, you know this is probably the most perplexing challenge you’ve ever faced. Why do they act the way they do? What can you do to help your child grow up to be a happy, successful, independent adult?

We created these podcasts to give you answers to these questions. If you apply the insights, tips and ideas we share, you’ll strengthen the bond you have with your child. And you’ll prepare this young person to deal with the inevitable adversity, temptations, and setbacks he or she will face during the teen years and later, as an adult.


Dennis (Denny) Coates, Ph.D., and Meredith Bell are co-founders of Performance Support Systems, a software company based in Newport News, Virginia. Our passion and goal since 1987 has been to create assessment and development resources that help people become stronger for the challenges of work and life. Our programs have been used by millions of people worldwide.

During this 25-year span Denny has nurtured an unrelenting interest in the human brain – how it develops, learns and makes decisions. These days he spends most of his time writing about personal development, communication skills, personal strength and parenting teens. His latest guide for parents, How to Give Your Teen a Superior Mind, explains what you can do to stimulate your child’s brain so he or she learns to exercise good judgment and decision making. Denny’s two sons are pursuing successful careers in information technology.

Denny is also the author of two story-based books of advice for young teens: Conversations with the Wise Uncle (for boys) and Conversations with the Wise Aunt (for girls), available in paperback or Kindle on Amazon.

Meredith has pursued her lifelong enthusiasm for teaching, beginning with her first career as a classroom teacher working with pre-teens. Over the years, she has coached and trained thousands of business leaders, managers, and employees, with a focus on helping them communicate effectively. Now she’s dedicated to helping parents, young adults and teens develop these same skills through our online programs. One of her proudest accomplishments is raising a daughter who today is a happily married, independent, productive adult.

Our latest online personal development coaching systems give people the tools they need to handle the hard things in life. A program for parents, Strong for Parenting, can help you avoid conflicts and strengthen your communication skills with your teen. Strong for Success helps teens and young adults acquire the strengths and skills they’ll need for the next phase of their lives—whether college or a career. Get more information about these programs at www.StrongForParenting.com

 Also, you can connect with us through our blogs and on social media:

Dennis (Denny) E. Coates, Ph.D.


Meredith Bell


Your Voice of Encouragement