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2021-09-10

Managing change an art

A change-or-else directive to employees doesn’t work, says in-demand keynote speaker Nancy Sova, who heads Imagine Success Consulting. “In order for someone to change, people have to know the reasons why,” Sova explains. “How it benefits them and how it aligns with their personal values, and how it adds value to the organization.” Using fear and intimidation is counterproductive. “They’re the lifeblood,” she adds, describing the people in an organization. “If they don’t see how they make a difference, then they’re not going to be able to take pride in their work and take ownership for the quality of work – that’s what it boils down to.” After a career developing training programs and change-management strategies in-house for an Ontario school board, Sova’s reputation began circulating in corporate circles as well. “I’ve had requests over the last six or seven years to speak at conferences,” recalls Sova, who finally set up her own corporate training company a year ago. “Back in the ‘80s, no government agency, including schools boards, was service oriented.” Later, when the paradigm shifted, she realized a “huge piece was missing” and began to introduce leadership and development training focused on soft skills. Over the years, she has become certified in many aspects of adult education, including Myers-Briggs Type Indicator and Cognitive Coaching. “I love to learn how adults learn,” she says. “I have a thirst and curiosity about it.” With her extensive facilitation and presentation skills, she provides empowering and inspiring talks about navigating change, personal success strategies, building collaborative cultures, effective communication strategies and process improvement (among other topics). Her corporate-training initiatives are customized programs that track change. “It doesn’t happen overnight,” she warns. “I don’t give band-aid solutions. It takes at least a year or two to reach business goals.” In a large organization, she says it can take up to a decade to really see a culture change because of the large group of people involved. “At six months, we measure the change in behaviours, skills, knowledge and attitudes that the program was designed to do,” she explains, saying the data can be gathered by surveys, one-on-one conversations or through focus groups. “It depends on the culture, size and availability.” Throughout the process, she follows up with coaching. “And then at a year, I measure the effect on the organization as a whole.” If the company wanted to increase productivity by 10 per cent, for example, that’s what she examines. The process can be scalable for smaller companies, she says, which tends to produce much quicker results. Regardless, it’s important all levels of corporate responsibility support the programming. “It’s very much a partnership,” Sova says. “If the senior management isn’t walking the talk, it’s not going to work. When I go into a business, I’m really straight with them.” Working throughout the province, Sova has scheduled programs at the Gibson Centre in Alliston, and presents regularly in Barrie. For more information, visit www.imaginesuccess.ca.

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2021-03-19

Guergis now under fire for Alberta mailer

Simcoe-Grey MP Helena Guergis is coming under fire for yet another mailer, only this time it’s in another province. Hot on the heels of the controversy over a constituency newsletter sent out after the election writ was dropped, a columnist for the Edmonton Journal newspaper reported yesterday that Guergis had sent out pro-Conservative mailers to homes in the Edmonton-Strathcona riding. The Alberta riding is the same one that Guergis’ husband, Rahim Jaffer, represented prior to being defeated in the 2008 federal election. In the column by Todd Babiak, some Edmonton residents said the mailer was a waste of money and questioned why it was sent and why it was sent by Helena Guergis, an MP who respresents a riding thousands of kilometers away in another province. The mailer, similar to the ones the Conservatives were sending out prior to the election last year, reportedly raises a question as to which one of Canada’s federal party leaders is doing the best job at protecting the Canadian public during the current economic uncertainty. The column reported there is also a photo of Prime Minister Stephen Harper, and gave residents the option to check a box beside the names of one of the four federal party leaders. When contacted by the Herald Guergis’ staff member Val Knight said she was unaware of the mailers. She said they didn’t come out of the Simcoe-Grey constituency offices or from Guergis’ staff in Ottawa. "It would have gone out from the Conservative Party. The only thing that our office sends out is the 10 per center and the householder," she said. Guergis was not immediately available for comment. The original column in the Edmonton Journal can be read by clicking here:

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