Growing with Purpose

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September 16, 2019  

Camille Nicita: Overnight Owner

When Gongos' beloved founder, John Gongos, passed away suddenly in 2012, Camille became the new owner literally overnight. Having joined in the launch of Gongos Research in 1991, Camille's s forward-leaning posture is establishing a new north for the company. Staying true to the company’s core competencies while nurturing new talent, Camille operates under the belief that people realize their full potential when put in the right seats. Her grounding vision is to foster a culture where innovation, transparency, and vibrancy shape a company fit for the future.

Nobody can be prepared for loss, but Camille's leadership and compassion helped employees, customers, and the community cope and find a new path forward. In this episode, hear how Camille used values to navigate those challenges, and the customer-centric strategy that is driving Gongos' success today.

 

August 12, 2019  

Ty Hagler: Changing the Current

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Ty Hagler, founder and Principal of the industrial design firm, Trig

As a teenager volunteering at the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, Georgia, Ty was exposed to the sport of flatwater kayaking for the first time. That was the start of what became a decade-long career: Ty eventually grew into a world-class kayaker and was even an Olympic hopeful in 2004. But there comes a time when every athlete must retire, and when Ty hung up his paddle, he decided to return to earlier passions that he'd abandoned. An introvert with a passion for art, design, and engineering, Ty founded Trig in 2008. After years of running the business solo, he shifted his focus to building a team of aligned, inspired individuals and committed to a 100% virtual model. Changing the current isn't always easy, but it's a life skill that Ty has mastered better than most. 

After a decade as a world-class athlete, Ty realized that the same principles of discipline, processes, pragmatism, and persistence that are required for sport can also be applied to teams that lead innovation results. In this episode, you'll hear how Ty's lifelong curiosity allowed him to build an award-winning, virtual design firm. 

July 8, 2019  

William Vanderbloemen: Create Your Own Party

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with William Vanderbloemen, founder and CEO of the Vanderbloemen Search Group.

After more than 15 years of ministry experience as a Senior Pastor, William Vanderbloemen came up with the idea to bring the best practices of executive search to faith-based organizations. Prior to his founding Vanderbloemen, William studied executive search under a mentor with over 25 years of executive search at the highest level. Realizing that many churches struggled to find and retain leadership, he brought the idea to his faith community and challenged them to do things differently. But bringing new ideas to the church isn't always an easy process — hear how William created buy-in and built what would become a 2018 Forbes Small Giant: Best Small Companies in America.

In this episode, you'll hear William's early lessons learned from an arch nemesis on his paper route, the nine cultural values that define his company, and William's lifelong habit of blowing stuff up.

June 3, 2019  

Kornel Grygo: From Delivery Driver to CEO

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Kornel Grygo, the newly-named CEO of Tasty Catering

Kornel Grygo grew up in Poland until he moved to the United States at the age of ten. His childhood was defined by working hard and taking responsibility, two traits that would serve him well as he climbed the ranks at Tasty Catering. Kornel originally came to Tasty Catering as a front-line employee over a decade ago, working as a brand ambassador and a delivery driver. Kornel was a perfect match for Tasty's values-based, high-performing culture and the company continually invested in his growth and development — even enrolling him in a leadership development program with the Small Giants Community in 2016. Earlier this year, Kornel was named CEO of Tasty Catering.

In this episode, Kornel shares his early lessons on leadership and explains how Tasty's strong culture helped make his transition to CEO successful. 

May 6, 2019  

Courtney Kingston: Don’t Bet the Farm

On this episode of the Growing with Purpose podcast, host Paul Spiegelman talks with Courtney Kingston, founder of Kingston Family Vineyards in Casablanca Valley, Chile. 

Growing up, Courtney Kingston's imagination was constantly captured by her family's 100-year-old cattle ranch in Chile. In the early 1900s, her great grandfather settled on the land, and five generations of Kingstons have since grown up on the farm. Eager to make her own mark on the family legacy, Courtney wrote a business plan to plant a vineyard in the far western hills of the family farm. They planted their first grapevines in 1998 and in 2003, they made 400 cases of Pinot Noir and Syrah under the Kingston Family label. 

It sounds like the stuff of dreams, and much of the time it is. But every business faces challenges, and every leader has lessons they learned the hard way. In this episode, Courtney shares her trials and tribulations, from earning a spot as one of the best wineries in Chile to her mental health struggles during her family's move to Santiago. Through it all, hear how hard work, trusting relationships, and a grounding purpose helped guide the way.