I'm a free spirit who became a driven maniac on the work front. As a speaker, executive coach and consultant, I strive to help individuals and companies realize their potential. My eclectic background as an executive includes experience in business strategy, enterprise risk management, internal cultural transformation, corporate communication, reputation, marketing, brand, research, corporate social responsibility, innovation and social media. I worked alongside an inspiring CEO and peers to shift the culture of a $25 billion (CDN) commercial Crown corporation from command-and-control to one of Canada's Top 50 Employers. I’ve obtained more credentials than a sane human could ever want, yet still found many opportunities to get in my own way. I became fascinated by leadership, power, influence, trust, internal politics, accountability, personal brand, the dynamics of teams, and employee engagement.
Whether I'm on stage delivering a speech, working one-on-one with a coaching client, advocating for a cause such as autism or leading an executive team through a session on leadership effectiveness or business strategy, my goal is the same: to help individuals and teams shine. After all, it’s individuals who make organizations shine.
I’m told that I have a knack for getting to the heart of the matter. Practicality is my middle name. Engaging people to look deep, have difficult conversations with themselves and others and make tough choices is necessary for professional growth, which – like it or not – always involves personal growth. It's also the foundation of good business strategy and calculated risk taking.
If you can learn how to face your strengths and weaknesses and then have the guts to get out of your own way, you won’t only realize your career potential, you’ll lift your personal life to a whole new level. And if you become a true leader, you almost certainly will become zealous about helping others to reach their potential. I am living proof. I had zero career ambition. I was a creative free spirit who never dreamt of being a wildly productive executive or entrepreneur. Thankfully, creativity wasn’t beat out of me in the corporate trenches, nor the idealistic view that the workplace isn’t just a venue where we show up and do our job. Every single individual contributes to a wonderful team culture or detracts from it. It’s a choice that we make every day, consciously or not.
I believe passionately in the need for every person to realize their potential. Self-awareness is the first step. But that's not enough. Managing ourselves - at work, at home, with friends and in our communities - is the hardest job we'll ever do. Many people externalize blame for their work issues, relationship problems and other challenges. It's hard to look in the mirror and take complete accountability for your life, your reactions, actions and even your inaction.
In my leadership journey, I’ve slayed many inner dragons. I used to feel hard done by at times. Why were some people more influential? Why did I have a son with autism? Why weren’t professions like communications and marketing respected as much as law and accounting? Why was bad behaviour by senior executives tolerated and even rewarded? Every employee needs to be respected, wherever they stand in the hierarchy. I knew that engagement mattered to individual lives and business results. I spoke my truth a little too stridently at times, and sounded self-righteous.
Along the way, I learned about influence and political savvy, and how to take accountability for my actions and those of my teams. We blew our goals out of the water, which gave me licence to colour outside the lines and influence major changes to how we led people.
Most of all, I learned how to be completely and utterly myself (with boundaries), which is the only way to foster absolute trust and fantastic relationships.
So that’s my story. My journey has led me to provide diverse services - from executive coaching and life coaching, to consulting on internal culture change, leadership and business strategy to speaking on various related topics. I am also a passionate advocate for mental health and autism, as well as reducing barriers that women face in the workplace. Every person from every walk of life deserves to have the chance to maximize their ability to realize their potential.