Event Recap - The Change Leadership Conference: Responding to Change Better & Faster

Posted by Avanti Women Aug 1, 2017

The Change Leadership Conference: Responding to Change Better & Faster

A diverse group industry leaders recently flocked to the Metro Toronto Convention Centre to hear two of this planet‰Ûªs most in-demand speakers on leadership and innovation—John C. Maxwell and Jeremy Gutsche—as well as some of Canada‰Ûªs foremost change agents discuss leading change successfully in today‰Ûªs business environment.

‰ÛÏWithout change, we remain stagnant, expose our organizations to financial losses, and lose our relevance in the marketplace,‰Û explained the event‰Ûªs host Yvonne Ruke Akpoveta, CEO at OliveBlue Incorporated, which presented The Change Leadership series.

‰ÛÏChange is dynamic and unending, and now it‰Ûªs happening at such a fast pace.‰Û

Key learnings

Seven speakers and panelists took to the stage to share their experiences and insights on change leadership. Here is a roundup of some of the most impactful thoughts that were presented.

‰ÛÏYour company culture has to demonstrate that you earn leadership because you‰Ûªre the best, not because you‰Ûªve been there the longest; if your culture protects that kind of environment, nothing is going to change.‰Û

John C. Maxwell, global leadership expert, speaker, author

‰ÛÏForty-four per cent of Canadian companies said they had courage, but only 11 per cent of companies in Canada actually had courage (statistics cited from Deloitte‰Ûªs 2016 report The Future Belongs to the Bold)… They need for us to step up as leaders.‰Û

Paul Alofs, president and CEO, The Princess Margaret Cancer Foundation

‰ÛÏI think diversity is one of the most important issues in terms of innovation and creative thinking. There‰Ûªs an old saying that, if you and I think alike, then one of us is redundant.‰Û

Jeremy Gutsche, disruptive innovation expert, speaker, author

‰ÛÏThere are things like agile fatigue. Some people thrive on being agile, and others hit the wall. As leaders, we have to be aware of that, and figure out what we have to do to get those employees ready.‰Û

Gail A. Serverini, divisional vice president, Change Management, Holt Renfrew

"Relevance is not just about having a customer focus but also an employee and community focus…  At RBC, we have a very healthy paranoia about being and staying relevant."

Laura Fisher, vice president, Human Resources Shared Services, RBC

"Intrapreneurship applies the same tenants of entrepreneurship: ask why, and mobilize people around a vision."

Dr. Steven Murphy, dean, Ted Rogers School of Management

"We rally employees behind the vision of us being a tech company that offers banking services."

Helen Wang, vice president, IT Lean Program, Scotiabank                                                                   

Go forth and lead change

Despite the fancy titles of some of the presenters, the most important message conveyed at the event was probably that a person needn‰Ûªt be a vice president, CEO, or business owner to lead.

‰ÛÏAnyone can learn to lead,‰Û Maxwell told the audience.  ‰ÛÏMy favourite quote is ‰Û÷one man with courage is a majority.‰Ûª‰Û


This article was contributed by Avanti Women volunteer, Trisha Richards. Trisha is a business communicator, writer and marketer in Toronto. Connect with her through her website: www.WriteReaction.ca.

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