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Meet Dr. Stephie Althouse, Our Founder/CEO ("Geek Guru") and Our Philosophy.

Dr. Stephie Althouse (maiden name Vierkotter) and her work have been featured in

San Diego Business Journal
T-Sector Magazine
MIT Technology Review Magazine
Aviation Week and Space Technology
San Diego Union Tribune
NASA Tech Briefs

She has been working with organizations such has

Harvard Institute of Coaching
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
National Science Foundation

Our founder, Dr. Stephie Althouse, started out her career as a Ph.D. chemist, award-winning scientist, and innovator.  She became a group leader heading up her own research area and then got intensely passionate about learning what it takes to successfully commercialize innovation.


MIT Technology Review Magazine recognized her as 1 of the 100 most promising young innovators under the age of 35.  She won two coveted "Small Business InnoResearch Rearch" Awards as well.

Driving to succeed in her career and for her innovations to make a tangible difference in the world, she searched for courses on entrepreneurship, leadership, marketing and business.  Despite piecing her training together from these various courses over the years, she eventually had hit the ceiling of opportunity within the company whose business she had helped building.

Stephie Altohuse, Ph.D. offers leadership trainign and executive coachiing for geeks

To the shock of her colleagues, Dr. Stephie Althouse (she goes by "Dr. Stephie) quit her job and started her own company, consulting at the interface of technology development and business development.

Less than 3 years later, she found herself leading a client’s high-tech company - filled with very smart, tech-savvy professionals - out of serious trouble.  She became the Visiting CEO™ and, through this work, built a reputation as a turnaround authority.  Working with her team, she raised revenues by 41% the first year.  Her Visiting CEO™ work also involved working with employee-owned / ESOP companies (ESOP means Employee Stock Ownership Plan).

Soon, her Visiting CEO™ work expanded to working with employee-owned/ ESOP companies (ESOP means Employee Stock Ownership Plan).  Dr. Stephie fell in love with the (proven) idea that ESOP companies and companies with other forms of employee ownership have the opportunity to excel well beyond the level of non-employee owned companies in the same industries.  Her passion for utilizing once talents and passions to the fullest extent possible to create business success, positive impact, fulfillment and even self-expression fit right in.  The ESOP community offers many concepts and proven tools for achieving higher engagement and initiative among team members. Dr. Stephie is bringing these tools plus many she has developed on her own with her, wherever she goes.

business consulting, executive coaching and leadership training with the "Transforming Talent Into Wealth" Philosophy

Wealth, the way Dr. Stephie defines it, is like a three-legged stool

The three legs of the "wealth stool" are:

  1. Make money (profit),
  2. Make a difference with your talent,
  3. Create a great quality of life.

A few "miracle turnarounds" later, Dr. Stephie Althouse, was sought out to write and speak about her turnaround and business growth experiences.

In response, she wrote her first two books “101 Quick Tips for High-Talent Companies” and  "101 Quick Tips for ESOP Leaders." Along with the books, she developed an innovative system called “Transforming Talent Into Wealth™”, which is now the basis of her work with companies and individuals.  The system is simple and fast to get started and proven to work.

101 Quick Tips for High-Talent Companies
101 Quick Tips for ESOP Leaders

Dr. Stephie is a relentless learner. She generously passes on what she knows and develops new tools to support others all the time. While immersed in her Visiting CEO work, she realized that consulting becomes even more effective when it is supported by a deep knowledge of coaching methods. She enrolled in a one-year long intense coaching program by Coaching Firm International (CFI) and got certified as CEO Action Coach.  Top-Notch CEO and CFI are affiliated members of the Institute

She enrolled in a one-year long intense coaching program by Coaching Firm International (CFI) and got certified as CEO Action Coach.  Top-Notch CEO and CFI are affiliated members of the Institute of Coaching at the McLean Hospital affiliated with Harvard.

Dr. Stephie is also certified as Seminar Leader, both life and via the medium of video/ video conference, by the American Seminar Leaders Association (ASLA).

Our Founder is a "Geek", Too ...

For our founder, being a geek is not about socially awkward.  Geeks, as we define it, are simply top experts at what they do - in whatever field.  They are innovative, visionary, always hungry to learn and discover more.  They are driven and won't give up until they achieve what they envisioned.

Geeks are fun to be with.  Our founder has been told she should write a book about her many puns with which she entertains (or tortures?) her friends and sometimes clients.

Innovators at work

There are Many Forms of "Geeks"

Geeks - as we lovingly call top experts who are driven to excel, learn more and make their visions a reality - come in all kinds of flavors.  Because of our Founder's background, we often work in the field of science and engineering.  However, Dr. Stephie quickly found that the patterns that exist in high-tech or STEM companies are very similar to those in other companies that require high levels of expertise. High-end construction, insurance, disciplines in the financial area, language translation are only a few examples. We also work with other types of creative entrepreneurs, such as graphic designers.  

Our clients are "geeks" in their respective field, i.e., TOP EXPERTS who can't wait to add the other ingredients to their knowledge base that transform that expertise into a massive professional and personal success.

Dr. Stephie Successfully Worked as a Women in STEM

Coaching women in STEM is very important to Dr. Stephie and is an integral part of our company's focus.  Too often women don't advance as far as their expertise could take them.  Companies lose valuable talent and the time they have invested in employees because of conflicts between demands of work and family.  Top-Notch CEO has proven tools to help this issue and retain more of your investment.  And it’s not just for women.  Men are looking for more success AND better work-life strategies.

Why Sales Professionals Sought Out Dr. Stephie as Their Coach

You might not have expected that sales professionals would seek out a "recovering high-tech geek" as their executive coach?

Imagine this story: A successful District Manager of a major insurance company who is responsible for guiding 30+ sales agents, contacts Dr. Stephie.  After meeting her, he is so impressed that he hires her as his executive coach.  Soon the work expands to the staff working with him in his district office.  Using our Talent Positioning™ methodology, the office's productivity soars because each member is now working in the flow of their top talents.  About one year later, the District Manager decides to hire Dr. Stephie to hold a customized workshop entitled "High-Achievement Goal Setting" for his top agents.  After four 1-hour follow on sessions to ensure implementation, the agents are offered a 1-year coaching circle that meets via video conference.  The agents who accepted were a mix of old-timers and newbies who had just opened their agency.  Everyone did very well.  Read more about their successes and experiences here and check out our page for Sales Professionals).

Dr. Stephie's "secret sauce" for how to achieve massive business success while creating the life YOU desire is irresistible - because it works!  None of the methods Dr. Stephie uses with her clients is theoretical. She developed these methods and tools while turning around her first client company, all the while her son was a 5-month old infant.  That is why this work is life-changing.

Why Is Dr. Stephie (and Our Company Overall) in Love with ESOP Companies

Many people have barely ever even heard about ESOP companies (Employee Stock Ownership Plan).  There are either whole or partially employee owned.  What Dr. Stephie learned is that when ESOP companies manage to train and coach their employees to adopt the mindset of a business owner, and if the overall leadership structure allows for these employee owners to give their input (at much higher levels that is common in other companies), miracles happen:  Profit margins are higher.  Productivity soars.  Succession becomes easier.  People are happier and the company rarely loses talent they wanted to keep.

The bottom line is: It pays to think like a business owner.  Or as Dr. Stephie phrases it "It pays to think like a Top-Notch CEO".

If you relate to what we say here, we invite you to contact us