Nikki Evans

Chief Thought Provoker at Ridgeline Coaching

Small Business

Education: BA Psychology University of Georgia - Georgia State University - MBA
Atlanta, GA, USA


Nikki Evans believes that work should be a place where we can thrive. She helps leaders and teams identify strengths, see what is getting in their way of having their success and create actionable plans to get more of what they want. She is naturally curious, loves to solve puzzles and tends to use analogies a lot to help drive clarity. Often people tell her they don’t know how what they are saying is connected and are amazed when they find the common thread and solve a mystery about how they can move forward with new clarity. Nikki's audiences can expect a sometimes quirky speaker who provides actionable insights, candid comments.

Nikki has a 20+ year background in information technology in various leadership roles. She has been coaching, speaking and teaching full time for the last 3 years. She earned a PCC from the International Coach Federation and the EMCC Global Team Coaching Individual Accreditation (ITCA) along with an MBA from Georgia State University and a BA in Psychology from University of Georgia.

Nikki has served as the executive coach for the Executive Women’s leadership forum at Emory University. This program was designed for executive women to work on presence, influence and growing authority. She very much enjoyed working with a non-profit group in Indiana to coach early learning professionals dealing with the pandemic and other stressors. Nikki has worked with several high performing leaders to hone leadership skills. She also guides teams to navigate the complex adaptive systems they work in to be more effective, joyful and productive in the time they spend together at work.


I believe we spend too much time at work and with co-workers to have work suck out our will to carry on. I want workplaces to be places where people are doing great work and enjoying it. This may sound like a lofty goal, and it is, and I really believe that some small tweaks can make a huge difference in our experiences at work. I believe that making work life better doesn't have to come at the expense of productivity. I believe small things can improve work without requiring a gargantuan effort. So, I speak on topics that allow listeners to try one small thing and see if it changes their experience at work for the better. For example, if you are in a bad mood heading into work, challenge yourself to smile for 10 minutes (you may feel ridiculous - that's ok) but if you commit to doing it and sticking with it - see if it doesn't change your mood going into work. I've done it and it did in fact work for me.

Featured Video

I am willing to travel

More than 100 miles

When it comes to payments

I sometimes get paid for speaking


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Best Story

I have several great stories to share, like the time I had the sweetest, softest spoken co-worker I'd ever encountered slam our office door and scream at me, or what travelling every week for nearly a year taught me about myself or when not having the right words to understand why work got so difficult for me, left me struggling and eventually fired and what came next.

Origin Story

After having a direct report try multiple times to get out of a project, I asked her to sit down and talk about it with me. She left our conversation feeling excited about the project she had been trying so hard to avoid. It felt a bit like magic to me and I wondered what happened. She came back and told me that had been a great coaching conversation and I should consider a career in it since I had done it so well. That began my earnest study of coaching and working to make those shifts at work all around me as often as I could and sparked a passion to help others do the same.

Example talks

Speaking the Language of Behavioral Diversity - the key to unlocking the secret to a successful DEI&B program.

Nikki Evans teaches leaders and teams the language of behavior diversity. Many initiatives in diversity fall short because we don't teach people of diverse styles to understand each other and how to communicate effectively. Nikki is dedicated to helping leaders and teams overcome costly misunderstandings and recognize and appreciate each other's strengths.

Who will benefit
Leaders who are looking to understand why teams have conflict and how to start addressing it at the core. Leaders who have started a DEI initiative, but are not seeing wide success. Leaders unsure of where to start with diversity conversations on their teams.

Key takeaways
The root of human connection and interaction is behavior.

Science based behavioral insights cross culture, gender, race, ethnic groups and allow a common starting point to understand each other.

Many initiatives aimed at bringing diverse groups together fail because differences are not well managed.

Speaking a common language around behaviors allows teams to understand and describe strengths and differences in a safe way and manage differences more effectively.

Leading Change: Accelerate, Adapt, Anchor

In this session, I introduce my framework for leading change based on how people naturally respond to change. The Accelerate, Adapt, Anchor model helps change leaders plan a change and how to think about what kind of messaging will be needed, who should be recruited to help drive the change and how to set people up for success in change initiatives. Leaders will have a model to think about the change they want and who and how they need to inspire or inform to make the change happen.

Key takeaways:
1. Participants will learn the Accelerate, Adapt, Anchor model of planning for change
2. Participants will have method for adapting change communications for those they want to influence to change
3. Participants will learn to identify natural change champions

What people have said about this talk:

"Love the framework that helps all types adapt to change. Thank you for this useful model!"
"People have different tolerances for change and need to be approached differently"

75% of survey respondents agreed this talk "Influenced how I think about the topic"
75% of survey respondents agreed this talk "Influenced how they will approach coaching/communicating around change"

Is this thing on? How to communicate so people will hear you.

Great leaders know how to leverage and adapt their communication style to effectively work with others with different styles. Join us to discuss strategies to get your message heard, communicate with clarity, and get others to understand and take action on your ideas. Participants learn the primary communication styles and how to recognize effective ways to adapt to each communication style need.

Key Takeaways:
1. Participants will be able to identify their own primary communication style
2. Participants will be able to identify communication styles of others
3. Participants will be able to adapt their style to meet needs of others

I’d be happy to offer participants the opportunity to take a Communication DNA discovery (12 questions that will get them a report of their own primary communication style) either before or after the event.

What people have said about this topic:

“I have heard similar presentations, but this one resonated with me with the different examples and visuals that was provided. I became very aware of my own communication style and an understanding of the needs of others with different styles.”

“The presentation will help me reflect and continue to verify how I communicate with everyone that I interact with for work.”

73% of survey respondent said the talk "Inspired me to try something new in my communications."
70% of survey respondents said the talk "Influenced how I will approach communication with others"