Survive & Thrive


Remote Work: What Will The Future Look Like?

Jan 25, 2022

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer Ayres takes you into the intricacies of remote work. She looks at remote work’s beginnings roughly a decade ago, how the present is coping with the sudden need to be remote overnight, and how the pandemic’s impact on remote work might carry into the future.

If you’re struggling to keep up with the rapid changes in how and where work happens, this episode will teach you how workplaces have evolved over the years and help you get ahead of the shift to hybrid and fully-remote work cultures that might be the future.

The Evolving Workplace: Building Something Better

Jan 18, 2022

The pandemic has changed how we work. As organizations adapt to a continuing pandemic, there needs to be thought put into how the workplace adapts with it. Hybrid and fully-remote workplaces are becoming more commonplace but organizations shouldn’t settle for replicating what they previously had. Instead, they need to think ahead and use this as an opportunity to build something better.

To kick off season 4 of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jessica Radford joins Jennifer Ayres to talk about the evolving workplace. Jessica is the Talent Acquisition Lead for consulting firm Slalom, giving her...

Season 4 Trailer

Jan 11, 2022

It's nearly time for Season 4 of the Survive & Thrive podcast -- a podcast that brings you stories and perspective on how in change times, leaders and organizations can not only transform to survive, but thrive.

This season, we're taking a closer look at the future of work. What will work actually look like in 6 months? A year? 5 years? 10 years? We'll be diving into topics like the hybrid work model, creating a sense of belonging, remote culture, diversity in the workplace, and so much more. With insights from experts in their respective fields, we'll explore how the future of work is...

Season 3 Wrap-up: Change Management

Jan 4, 2022

It’s the end of Season 3 of the Survive & Thrive podcast, which means it’s time to look back at what we learned. This season was all about change management -- Its role in an organization, why it’s necessary, and the impact it can have when done effectively.

In this episode, host Jennifer Ayres takes a look back through the season at her discussions with guests about change management. From a change management definition and goals to how your people will impact change management processes, it’s an in-depth look at what makes effective change management work.

Redefining Success Heading Into 2022

Dec 29, 2021

As we wrap up the third season of the Survive & Thrive podcast and we head into a new year, it's important to look at how we define success. The last couple of years have forced everyone to reflect on what's truly important, bringing a shift in priorities for many. That means we, as a society, should reexamine our definition of success.

On this week's episode, Jennifer Ayres shares her thoughts on success, especially as it relates to your own happiness and satisfaction. Jennifer also shares her own personal goals and what she feels she needs to be successful.

Navigating Change Through The Pandemic

Dec 21, 2021

The pandemic impacted everyone in some way but education was one of the most affected fields. That was especially the case for Matt Noble, an executive at Education First, who was ready to start a massive new project only to have the pandemic interfere.

Join Jennifer Ayres on this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast as she talks with Matt Noble about his experiences overcoming with the challenges the pandemic threw at him and the lessons learned along the way.

Leading Your Way To Success

Dec 14, 2021

In order for an organization to successfully enact change, it has to lean on its leaders to guide the way. A successful leader will be able to overcome their own unique challenges while managing to align all parties towards the common goal, handle resistance to change, and build good change effort. That’s a lot easier said than done.

That’s why we’re proud to welcome Janet Ramey to this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast. Janet is a Principal at Sourcing Change where she helps drive transformation by designing, counseling, sourcing, and connecting the talent necessary to drive that...

Leading Through Change

Dec 7, 2021


Change starts at the top and works its way down. That’s why organizations need leaders who can effectively and efficiently guide their teams through changes. From showing empathy and building a great culture to handling resistance to change, your successes and challenges are likely defined by your leadership.

To talk more about the importance of supporting leaders in an organization, Maria Janošíková joins us on this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast. Maria is a change management professional at Johnson & Johnson and has extensive experience in the industry, working across the...

Marrying Technology And People In Business

Nov 30, 2021

The pandemic caused technology to advance a massive amount in a short period of time as organizations and people continued marching forward. While those advancements have created new work-from-home opportunities, it has made connecting with one another a lot tougher. So, how do we manage to put some more humanity back into a workplace that is becoming more independent and divided than ever before?

Grant Riewe joins Jennifer Ayres and Samantha Collins on this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast to discuss how humanity and technology have to evolve in this new era of hybrid workforces.


How Gratitude Impacts You, Your Team, and Your Business

Nov 23, 2021

Now is the week of gratitude. For this special Thanksgiving episode, we chat about the social and emotional benefits of practicing gratitude. We cover what the research says and why gratitude is so important. Not only does gratitude impact you tremendously, but it can also bolster healthy relationships and overall work environment. Listen to the episode to learn more about ways you can show your gratitude this holiday season.  

Managing M&As: The Human Side Of Mergers And Acquisitions

Nov 16, 2021

Mergers and acquisitions come with a ton of unique challenges and changes that must be planned for and well-executed in order to be successful. However, while most focus on the financial side of things, the human element of M&As can’t be ignored either.

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, we’re joined by Melanie Payne, the CFO at Syniti. Melanie has been one of my favorite people to go to when I’m stuck with a complex challenge. With a wealth of experience and insight, Melanie is the perfect person to talk about managing a M&A.

How The Automotive Industry Has Survived And Thrived Massive Changes

Nov 9, 2021

Every single industry was touched in some way by COVID-19. But few industries have seen as much upheaval and change as the automotive industry has over just the last two decades. What is it about that industry that has allowed them to quickly adapt and pivot as needed to not just survive but actually thrive?

On this week’s episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, we’re joined by Ryan Gerardi, who has an extensive background in the automotive industry and is now a thought leader within the mobility tech and connectivity space. Ryan shares some of his experience working within the auto...

Using Core Values To Find The Heart Of A Business

Nov 2, 2021

The heart of a business sounds like an abstract idea at first glance. But with employees leaving companies in droves as they search for purpose and meaningful work, knowing the core values and the heart of your business is more critical than ever.

Joining the Survive & Thrive podcast this week is Sasha Lund. You might know her from her podcast “Legacy Talks” but she’s also the founder and CEO of Core Values Consulting. What better guest to have on to talk about finding and implementing core values and the heart of a business. Sasha explains how core values are important and ways...

How Organizations Can Embrace The Changing Future Of Work

Oct 26, 2021

The term “Future Of Work” is nothing new. However, the pandemic has accelerated timelines and brought about new realities that must be faced in order to not just survive but thrive. 

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer discusses what areas have seen the biggest cultural shifts, as employees rethink the traditional work model. She guides leaders on the ways to proactively embrace the new future of work, developing happier and healthier teams along the way.

Navigating Change And Thriving Through Effective Leadership

Oct 19, 2021

Organizational leaders can be the driving force behind effective change. They can improve employee engagement and navigate a team through difficult change. However, with new working environments, leaders have to double down on building and maintaining relationships with their team members.

Peter Hess joins Jennifer on the Survive & Thrive podcast to discuss the importance of leadership on change and how leaders can be more effective.

Using Internal Podcasts To Drive Change And Improve Culture

Oct 12, 2021

On the Survive & Thrive podcast, we always talk about ways organizations can drive meaningful and sustainable change. But how do you actually implement those strategies and get the relevant information in front of your staff in a consistent and engaging way? For many organizations, internal podcasts have been the way.

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer sits down with John Luckenbaugh and Matthew Stevens of My Podcast Agency -- the group that produces this very podcast -- to discuss how brand podcasts can be essential tools for change. Matt and John break down what an...

Managing Return To Work Anxiety By Building A Sense Of Belonging

Oct 5, 2021

On this special episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Steve Van Valin joins Jennifer Ayres to discuss the growing anxiety about returning to work and how to combat that.

Businesses are still figuring out what the work structure even looks like as the pandemic continues on and that’s making both leaders and staff anxious. Whether your return to work is truly returning to the office, fully remote and flexible, or a hybrid work structure; knowing how to effectively communicate with your employees as the evolution of the workplace continues.

Steve is the CEO and founder of Culturology, a...

Building Empathy And Resilience With Positive Psychology

Sep 28, 2021

Empathy, resilience, and positivity are some of the foundational elements to building engagement and setting up success as a leader and organization. However, not every organization or leader truly values those three elements in the way they should. So, how do you build them into your change initiative, your business model, and your everyday life?

On this week’s episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer Ayres sits down with Rachana Bhide to discuss the organizational psychology behind building engagement. With her background in consulting and media, including working at Bloomberg...

The Power Of Employee Engagement On Your Business

Sep 21, 2021

Only 36% of employees say they’re engaged in the workplace and it’s costing U.S. companies between $450 Billion - $550 Billion annually. It’s an area organizations need to improve upon immediately but how do they even get started, much less get buy-in throughout the entire organization?

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer is joined by Houdad Javidnia to discuss the importance of employee engagement on your business and ways you can begin to improve it right now. 

Houdad comes to the Survive & Thrive podcast with a wealth of experience in this field, having worked at...

What Is Design Thinking And How Can It Help You Enact Change?

Sep 14, 2021

How do you realize positive and sustainable change? By better understanding the problems at hand and the people facing them. That’s what makes the design thinking strategy such a natural fit with change management.

To talk about design thinking and how it can be a power for good in your efforts to enact change, Holly Chasan-Young joins me on today’s episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast. Holly is the founder and CEO of Wonderbolt Labs and has spent time at Capital One, doing product discovery and design strategy.



Let’s Talk About It: Impactful Leadership in Times of Change

Sep 7, 2021


On this special episode of Survive & Thrive, Jennifer Ayers discusses the recurring topics that come up with individuals from the podcasts or organizations she has worked with. In times of change, there is an abundance of opportunities for leaders to impact their organizations and employees.


Implementing Strategy: Finding More Success Through Flexible Leadership

Aug 31, 2021

Everyone loves a good strategy but it requires flexible and thoughtful leadership to actually implement it successfully. Not getting honest buy-in from your team is the quickest way to watch a great strategy fail, which can be the catalyst for a leadership change.

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Glade Holman joins Jennifer Ayers to discuss implementing strategy in the real world. Glade is the managing director at LearningBridge and the Park LI Group, and has found building ownership and being flexible in his strategy to be the keys to success.

The Power Of People During Times Of Change

Aug 24, 2021

You should never underestimate people. But tapping into the power of people during times of change is far easier said than done. Whether you’re building a compelling case for change, creating buy-in from leadership and below, or simply trying to build confidence; managing to drive your people forward takes a deft hand.

Tammie Pinkston, the vice president of organizational change management at ISG, joins Jennifer to discuss the power of people on this week’s episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast. With more than 30 years working in change management, Tammie has seen its evolution and what...

Building The Case For Change With Transparency And Empathy

Aug 17, 2021

No matter how big or small the change, the very first step is building the case for change. As we discussed in both Season 1 and Season 2, that means defining the purpose of the change and the reason people should care. In order to do that successfully and efficiently, you’ll need to get everyone on the same page and marching in the same direction with the same end goal in mind. Easier said than done, right?

That’s the expertise of this week’s guest, Kevin Campbell, the CEO of Syniti, who joins Jennifer Ayers to discuss building the case for change. Kevin shares how he’s been able to relate...

Survive & Thrive Podcast - Season 3 Trailer

Aug 10, 2021

Last season, the Survive & Thrive podcast took you through the eight tenets of change management. This season, we have some amazing guests and thought leaders on to discuss how they’ve applied these tenets to help their organizations navigate change in real-world scenarios. We’ll learn more about change management, employee engagement, empathy, resilience, building meaning, and so much more. 

While we’ve survived the pandemic, we now must learn to thrive in its wake.

The 8 Tenets Of Successful Change Management: A Season 2 Recap

Aug 3, 2021

In Season 2 of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer Ayres took you through the 8 tenets to drive meaningful, impactful, and sustainable change in an organization. In our Season 2 recap, Jennifer reviews each tenet and recalls what past guests had to say.

From defining the core pillars of change management and the importance of each to successfully navigating them in real-world scenarios, this season’s guests have brought special insight and experience that simply shouldn’t be missed.

Recognize, Reward, Repeat: Motivating Through Recognition

Jul 27, 2021

Learning how to motivate people is a foundational tenet of change management. You can’t create an organizational culture or deal with a sudden and unexpected change well if people aren’t properly motivated.

While that might seem like an easy task, organizations get it wrong far too often. However, by recognizing and having empathy for what people are going through and rewarding the behaviors you want to see, you’re on the right path for motivation.

To discuss motivation, Steve Van Valin joins Jennifer Ayres once again on the Survive & Thrive podcast. He gives real-world examples of...

Making It Stick: Creating An Organization Ready For Change

Jul 20, 2021

As we learned throughout the coronavirus pandemic, change is constant. So, how do you make changes stick? To do it right, you’ve got to start at the very beginning and create a change-adapted organization that can stay resilient.

Kelli Skaff joins Jennifer Ayres on this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast to talk about how and why organizations should create an internal change management function. Kelli is a change management expert, handling major changes like system integration, finance process design, setting up shared-service models, and so much more.

Using Readiness Metrics To Gauge Progress And Find Problems

Jul 13, 2021

When implementing a change, how do you know if it’s successful or creating more problems than it’s solving? If you’re smart, you’re using change management metrics to gauge progress, what success looks like, how the change is impacting employees, and finding critical problems before they blow up in your face.

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer Ayres is joined by Jigar Shah to discuss the importance of change management metrics and what organizational leaders should be measuring in the first place. Jigar is a strategic advisor at Concinnity, focusing on helping...

Using Change Plans To Chart The Course

Jul 6, 2021

Any well-executed change begins with a great change plan. That’s what we’re discussing on this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast. 

Kristel Kurtz, a strategic advisor at Concinnity, joins Jennifer Ayres on this episode to discuss the importance of change plans in change management. 

A great change plan will think about the who, how, and why of a proposed change to have a better understanding of what will be needed and the potential hurdles along the way. Jennifer and Kristel break down why change plans are needed, what should go into one, and what blindspots organizations need to be...

Bracing For Impact: The Importance Of Thinking About Change Impact

Jun 29, 2021

It can be so easy to view change from a distance and miss how that change impacts each and every person and facet of an organization. Not thoroughly thinking about how change impacts at the individual level can create additional challenges or even derail a project well before it’s finished.

Samantha Collins, a Concinnity partner, joins Jennifer Ayres to define change impact and discuss its importance when planning a change within an organization.

Messaging Matters: The Impact Of Great Business Messaging On Change

Jun 22, 2021

No matter how big or small of a change, it can only really happen if you’ve got great business messaging in the first place. From perceived gaps in the plan to a lack of buy-in from leadership and staff, poor communication can create a host of issues that can make change management downright impossible.

To discuss the merits of good business messaging and communication, Jennifer Ayres is joined once again by Lisa Insley. Lisa and Jennifer break down the importance of communication and how to be a better communicator.

The Importance Of Knowing Your Audience When Enacting Change

Jun 15, 2021

Whether you’re in the initial planning stages or firmly in the middle of enacting change within your organization, knowing your audience is critical to success. If you don’t know who is being impacted and how; you’ll face major hurdles along the way and struggle to get the type of buy-in needed. On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer Ayres is joined by Jeff Bone, a partner at Concinnity, to talk about the importance of knowing your audience.

Change Management: Building The Case For Change

Jun 8, 2021

In order to start enacting change, you have to build the case for change. No matter if it’s a positive or negative change, a small or large company, or anything in between; doing a little initial homework can put the right wheels in motion. In the first episode of Season 2, Jennifer Ayres is joined by Lisa Insley, a partner at Concinnity to discuss how leaders can build the case for change and start guiding an organization through it.

Survive & Thrive - S2E0 - Coming Soon - An Overview of Eight Tenets to drive Change in an Organization

Jun 1, 2021

Welcome to Season Two!  This season, my partners and I will walk you through eight tenets to drive meaningful, impactful, and sustainable change in an organization.  Starting next week, we’ll explore each of these tenets at a high level over 8 weeks, and then, we’ll take a deeper dive into each one to really understand why it’s important and how to put some of these principals into practice.  We’ll share some of our own personal experiences from the hundreds of clients we’ve helped and invite other professionals to our show to share their stories on what worked, what didn’t work, and what...

What We Learned About Resiliency: A Survive & Thrive Season 1 Recap

May 25, 2021

After more than a year of the coronavirus pandemic, what have we learned? That’s the very question host Jennifer Ayres aims to answer as she looks back at the first season of the Survive & Thrive podcast.

In the Survive & Thrive Season 1 finale, Jennifer takes a look back at the 19 guests and 19 stories she helped to tell in order to find the common themes and lessons learned. There was an amazing amount of resilience shown as people and businesses faced unprecedented crises due to COVID-19. But what makes up resilience and how can we nurture that trait after the pandemic is over and life...

Nurturing Our Sense Of Humanity In Order To Survive And Thrive

May 18, 2021

The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic was felt worldwide. But by looking at and learning from what happened and how people responded to it, we can get a far better idea of where to go from here. However, one thing that became obvious was the need to continue to nurture our sense of humanity and take better care of one another.

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer Ayres sits down with world thought leader Dr. Partha Ghosh. Dr. Ghosh is known as an innovator of business and economic models, advising business and government leaders around the world. Jennifer and Dr. Ghosh...

Reducing Employee Burnout Through Wellness

May 11, 2021

No one is immune to stress and the effects it can have on the body and mind. Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic has been a major stressor for a lot of people, leading to a sharp increase in employee burnout as the lines between work and home have blurred. As both individuals and companies are beginning to pay closer attention to wellness, it’s imperative we discuss the importance of wellness -- both physical and mental -- and how to improve it.

To provide her insight into wellness and share some things you can do to improve it, Danielle Day joins Jennifer and the Survive & Thrive podcast...

The Power Of Introspection To Create Personal And Professional Growth

May 4, 2021

The COVID-19 pandemic was a time of change for everyone. But for Devin Basinger, it was an even bigger one as he decided to leave the company he founded and join another startup right as the pandemic was starting.  

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer Ayres is joined by Devin Basinger to talk about his experiences founding and eventually leaving his company Deep Bench, joining the startup H1, and how he’s applied the lessons he’s learned along the way to find personal and professional growth.

Finding Purpose, Caring, And Building Trust

Apr 27, 2021

During the COVID-19 pandemic, people began to reflect more on their lives, their relationships, how they spend their time, and finding purpose in their work. While everyone dealt with a massive amount of change throughout the pandemic, having to quickly pivot in their personal and professional lives, there could be even more change on the horizon as people begin looking for new opportunities to do more meaningful work that aligns with their purpose.

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer is joined by Dr. Robert Sicora to discuss finding purpose, cultivating a sense of...

Diversity Hiring: Elevating Women In The Workplace

Apr 20, 2021

While the COVID-19 pandemic was hard on just about everyone, it also helped provide some introspection. With so much upheaval over the last year in processes and even organizational hierarchy; many companies have been making strides to become more inclusive. However, not enough has been done to boost women’s voices, especially minority women, when thinking about diversity hiring practices.

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer is joined by Trish Torizzo, the CEO of Triple Hill Consulting and Ascentiya. Trish shares her story, going from being the CIO at Hologic at the...

Embracing Change: How Rackspace Handled The COVID-19 Pandemic

Apr 13, 2021

Whether we like it or not, change happens in life. Unfortunately, no one could have predicted the amount of change we’d all have to go through with the COVID-19 pandemic. On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Ed Skowronski -- the vice president of solution services at Rackspace Technology -- joins Jennifer to discuss embracing change.

What Is Change Management: The Science And Art Of Change

Apr 6, 2021

The coronavirus pandemic reinforced that the one constant in life is change itself. On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Bas Zwart -- an executive at Johnson and Johnson -- joins Jennifer to discuss developing and implementing change management solutions.

Bas’s experience in a variety of HR leadership roles has given him plenty of practice navigating teams through change. From determining what is change management to its role throughout the pandemic and even beyond, Bas’s insight is an invaluable tool for any business looking to be proactive about developing sustainable change...

Using Automation In Business To Improve Productivity

Mar 30, 2021

When most people think about automation in business, they conjure up ideas of robots taking someone’s job, but that’s not always the case. In fact, automating mundane and annoying tasks can be a great way to free up time for far more valuable and fun work, increasing productivity and job satisfaction. 

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Marilyn Krichko -- the automation leader at Spectrum Brands and co-author of “The Rowers’ Code” -- joins Jennifer to talk about the power of automation in business and its uses, especially during the coronavirus pandemic.

Using Voice Technology To Create A Better Experience

Mar 23, 2021

Smart assistants are everywhere now -- in things like lightbulbs, speakers, headphones, and mobile devices. As people have begun to embrace and experiment with all that voice technology has to offer to their daily lives, the need for custom solutions to create a better human experience has come with it. That’s where this episode’s guests come in.

On this episode of the Survive & Thrive podcast, Jennifer is joined by Lisa Insley and Jason Fields. Lisa is a partner and expert in helping clients create a more compelling human experience at Concinnity while Jason is the chief strategy officer...

Customized Employment: The Benefits of Flexibility

Mar 16, 2021

Throughout the coronavirus pandemic, the flexibility of a work-at-home schedule has been a welcome change for many employees as they try to handle both home and work. It’s also been a massive boon for employers, seeing their staff work more hours thanks to the increased flexibility. However, with companies opening back up, customized employment is in high demand and very much needed.

Jess Podgajny joins Jennifer to talk about her new company LLUNA and how it’s making it easier for businesses to implement and manage customized employment options. From work schedules, take-home pay, time off...