077 – What Works Today, May Not Work Tomorrow | Kevin Gearheart

In today’s Gut + Science, we’re talking to a CEO that has done the heavy lifting required to embrace change innovation with his leadership team–whether that’s thriving through acquisitions or navigating strategy that no one thought would work.

Kevin Gearheart is the president of Rehab Medical, a medical supply company providing in-home medical services and equipment to improve quality of life.

Truth You Can Act On:

  1. What works today, may not work tomorrow: Be ahead of the game.
  2. If you’re not evolving, you’re dying: Get everyone on board with embracing change in your organization. Make it a cultural norm.
  3. Execution drives strategy: Don’t wait until perfect to start and don’t be afraid of change.
  4. Stack your leadership bench: Always be recruiting your next leaders.

Nikki’s Book Recommendation:


  • Emplify – Emplify has created a new way to measure employee engagement. It’s where CEOs who want to know what’s really happening within a workforce go to get honest feedback and to understand what needs to change for people to love their work. Visit Emplify.com.

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076: Nikki Lewallen | Ask Powerful Questions

In today’s Gut+Science episode, we’re talking about listening more and listening better. There’s power in learning how to listen because it makes people feel seen and empowered to make decisions.

Listen in as host Nikki Lewallen talks about the powerful questions that help leaders elicit more than a simple yes/no response from their team members.

Some Powerful Questions:

  1. What makes you proud to work for our company?
  2. What are the most important resources you have currently to do your job effectively?
  3. What makes you feel meaning in the work that you do for this organization?

If you’d like more powerful questions from Nikki, email her at nikki@mondayfire.com.


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072 – Leading a People-First Organization | Dave Foellinger

In today’s Gut+Science episode, we’re reemphasizing the importance of real, transparent, authentic, and meaningful connections at work, and how these same traits are core to decision making in leadership.

Dave Foellinger is the President and COO of Jack Laurie Group. He’s in an industry plagued with high turnover and is constantly aiming to improve and innovate processes.

Listen in as Dave shares his failures turned learnings throughout his leadership journey, and the importance of leading a people-first organization.

Truth You Can Act On: 

    1. Make Building Real and Meaningful Connections Your Top Priority. Understand what motivates your people and get to know them personally to support them outside of their work role.
    2. Measure Employee Engagement and Share the Findings with Managers. Empower your managers with data that gives them a roadmap to know where to focus on innovating for change. Be sure to encourage curiosity as a trait in this process.
    3. Hiring Right is Critical. Hire great people – but make sure they’re aligned with your company’s culture and core values.

    Book Recommendation: 

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071 – You Can’t Stop The Growth: Building a Culture That Takes Care of Your Customers | Chad Peterman

Gut+Science is back in 2020 with an epic lineup of highly engaged leaders!

In our first episode of the new year, we’re talking to Chad Peterman, President of family-owned trade business Peterman Heating, Cooling & Plumbing, Inc.

You’ll hear Chad discuss eight ways to lead a growing company with a strong culture and happy customers. His energy for culture, leadership, and community is contagious. Listen in.

Plus, make sure to check out Chad’s new book: You Can’t Stop The Growth: Building a Culture That Takes Care of Your Customers.

Truth You Can Act On: 

    1. Empower Your Employees to Dream Big. Create a safe environment for your people to be themselves, and share their perspectives, strengths, and values. Psychological safety is a flagship driver for employee engagement.
    2. Paint a Vivid Vision. Make sure employees know where the company is going. Illustrate what the company looks like in the future, as clarity of the future helps employees gain confidence in their role.
    3. Ask Powerful Questions.. It’s easy to tell people what to do, but it doesn’t help your employees know that you trust then. If your employees know you’re listening, you’re empowering them. 

    Book Recommendation: 

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070 – A New Decade to Live Intentionally | Nikki Lewallen

You’ll want to listen to this when you have a pen and paper handy, Gut+Science listeners!

What are your hopes and goals for 2020? And how can you say ‘no’ to things that don’t fulfill you?

Listen in as host Nikki Lewallen dives into a powerful tool that can help you live intentionally in the new year.

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069 – Why Relationship Building is Crucial to Retention | Deseri Garcia

Did you know that when people have someone at work who’s considered a good friend, they are seven times more likely to fully engage in their work? Yet, many companies still don’t incorporate relationship building into their recruitment and retention strategies.

In this episode of Gut+Science, we’re talking to Deseri Garcia, the founder of Vida Aventura, a platform to build high-performing teams. Deseri believes relationship building is crucial to growing and sustaining employee engagement, and that a culture fostered around camaraderie boosts retention. 

Listen in as Deseri discusses essential skills, onboarding, and psychological safety [the feeling your people have when their leader, their company and their team have their back]. 

How can you build psychological safety within your company? And how can you create camaraderie opportunities both inside and outside the workplace to build bonds among leaders and peers? You’ll want to hear Deseri’s advice. 

Truth You Can Act On: 

  1. Soft Skills Are Essential Skills. These skills are what make engagement and learning stick, and having relationships with coworkers is crucial when it comes to retention. 
  2. Make Onboarding a Journey, Not an Event. Everyone has different learning styles. Onboarding is not a check-the-box thing, so it can’t be done in a few days. 
  3. Be Intentional About Building Psychological Safety. Set the stage for everyone to share their thoughts and to be heard in meetings. Psychological safety is a key driver of employee engagement. 
  4. Relationship Building. Make sure these relationship-building team events occur regularly. Bonus points if you have them offsite! 

Book Recommendation: 

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068 – Learning to Lead Yourself First | Sarah Andreas

“If you’re not leading yourself well, the chances of leading others well is truly diminished.”

Sarah Andreas, Ph.D., is the CEO of WiseWood, LLC, a leadership development company dedicated to helping people-first organizations develop whole leaders. She’s also the author of Invisible Roots, which dives into overcoming the complexities of being a woman in leadership.

For Sarah, invisible roots are the stories we tell ourselves about our ability to lead. These stories have taken root without your conscious thought or permission. How can you remove them, and develop new beliefs and behaviors that truly reflect what you think, believe and aspire to become? 

In this episode, you’ll hear Sarah share practices that you can use to help you become more aware of the invisible roots in your life that could be holding you back from being the leader you are called to be. 

Truth You Can Act On: 

  1. Focus on Filling Your Cup First. You can’t give if you’re empty. Remember, if you aren’t leading yourself well, you most likely won’t be leading others well either. 
  2. Make Reflection a Habit. Take time to pause and debrief your experiences to learn from them. This is a great way for us to work to get better.
  3. Proactively Seek Diverse Perspectives. Get involved with things you’re passionate about with others who are different from you and ask them questions to understand their viewpoint.
  4. Find Your Tribe. Have an inner circle that encourages you, and inspires healthy competition. 

Book Recommendation: 

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067 – Encouraging Personal Development [Part 2] | Tommy Richardson

“If there’s one thing that you can point to that leads to growth, work on your physical journey, because that creates the energy to develop in all of the other areas.”

As we launch Part 2 of this special two-part episode with mental performance coach and trainer Tommy Richardson, we’re diving into the physical side of personal growth.

If you’re not eating right, exercising, or getting enough sleep, your overall performance can be truly limited. It all starts with you, and it’s an inside out transformation according to Tommy.

In this episode, you’ll hear his advice on how you can grow in your physical, social, and emotional development journeys.

Plus, what tactics can you promote to encourage your people to develop in these areas as well? As Tommy says, the more we can develop the people around us, the greater the success of our companies, and ourselves. Listen in.

Truth You Can Act On:

  1. Purpose unlocks engagement. On your spiritual growth journey, understanding your purpose is key. As leaders, make sure you know your team members’ individual purpose. Help them help you understand their purpose.
  2. The mental game is huge. We choose our attitude, and you can’t be negative and in gratitude at the same time. Try shifting your attitude with the ‘cancel-cancel’ approach Tommy discusses in this episode.
  3. Physical development journey. Physical activity can help immensely with stress management, energy, and confidence. Whether it’s going for a daily walk or lifting weights, make sure your employees are getting the physical activity they need.
  4. Social and emotional development journey. Don’t live in isolation – it’s important to build relationships and meet new people. Spend time listening to and understanding others.
  5. Embrace feedback daily. Having a culture of feedback on your team can embrace transparency.
  6. The importance of reading. What are you consistently doing to develop yourself as a leader? Try having a book going at all times to further develop your growth journey.

Book Recommendation: 

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066 – Encouraging Personal Development [Part 1] | Tommy Richardson

Tommy Richardson is a mental performance coach and trainer, partner of Synergy Training and former International President for Toastmasters International, an organization dedicated to helping others gain confidence in public speaking. He has spent more than 40 years developing teams and people as a business coach.

In Part 1 of this special two-part episode, Tommy dives into personal development. As a leader, do you know your employees’ personal purpose? How can you unlock high employee engagement by utilizing your people’s purpose?

Listen in to Gut+Science as Tommy discusses how spirituality, mindfulness, attitude and more can impact personal development in the workplace.

Truth You Can Act On:

  1. Tune in to Part 2 of Tommy’s interview next week for Nikki’s full Truth You Can Act On, but in the meantime, share your takeaways and tag us on social media.

Book Recommendation:

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065 – Engage Mentoring: The Importance of Being a Mentor and Having a Mentor | Alison Martin

“You should never stop mentoring and you should never stop being mentored.”

Alison Martin is the Chief Mentoring Officer at Diverse Talent Strategies, a training and development firm with a unique mentoring process aimed at talent development, promoting inclusion, employee engagement, and social responsibility.
As Alison points out, you would be hard-pressed to find a successful leader who doesn’t attribute mentoring as a key aspect in helping them reach success.

How can mentoring help you shine a different perspective on problems and bring in fresh, outside ideas?
In this episode of Gut+Science, Alison and Nikki hone in on the importance of peer, group, and one-on-one mentoring. Listen in to hear success stories of leaders overcoming challenges, tips on finding strategic solutions, and more.


The Engage Mentoring Executive Talent Roundtables provide a confidential peer mentoring experience for organizational leaders striving to build highly engaged workforces. Build new relationships and leave the session with an action plan from the new ideas and inspiration gained in this powerful two-hour session. Check out this free Engage Mentoring Talent Roundtable offer for Gut+Science listeners!

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