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Events Blog

Read about past TODN events here.
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  • 01 Dec 2018 12:22 PM | Aminata N'Doye (Administrator)

    Linda delivered a fantastic and dynamic webinar on how we can apply a positive lens to change management. Using the change management cycle, she identified five sources of negative bias: selling services, framing the reasons for change, assessing change, reporting and motivation. For each one, she provided tangible tips on how we can reframe change in a more positive light. We also covered some models we could leverage in our change management work such as design thinking and appreciative inquiry.

    One of the most interesting elements of the webinar was having participants share how they applied positivity in their change work. There is a lot of great work being done in the community and it was a wonderful opportunity to hear more about it and learn from each other. This is a testament to Linda’s facilitation style, which was to have a participative and engaging session vs. information download.

    Lots of awesome takeaways from the session! Click here to view a recording of the webinar.
  • 16 Nov 2018 2:40 PM | Jami Monte (Administrator)

    This year’s winter conference was met with our first bout of winter weather and we were happy to see that many members made it out!  Dina Barazza, Certified Mentor Practitioner & Leadership Expert, facilitated a session on The Wellness Mentor Conundrum.  There was a mix of of speaking, group work and individual work (including some sketching!) keeping everyone engaged and excited.  

    Dina’s passion for mentorship really shone through.  She touched on common desires that we have as humans - learning, inspiring others and being inspired ourselves (in both personal lives and work lives) – and how they are often fulfilled via the mentorship process.  Mentorship is not only beneficial to the mentee and the mentor, but it can be beneficial within the organization as an attraction and retention tool.

    When asked to discuss what mentorship and coaching look like to the group members, specifically the differences between the two relationships, many guests had conflicting ideas and Dina helped to clarify key differences.  We learned that mentorship is a short-term commitment; one can have multiple mentors for different areas of their life.  Both mentors and coaches are used for self development, but the interactions play out differently – a coach “pushes” the person being coached whereas a mentor “pulls” the mentee.  Some were surprised to realize that a manager-employee relationship is not a mentoring relationship, a manager is in fact a performance coach!

    On the wellness side of things, some group brainstorming happened around wellness practices.  Dina shared with us one of her tips of drilling down our to-do lists to 3 items a day, this idea was a hit with many members!  Resilience was also a hot topic, we were encouraged to use the “3 C’s” for our own resilience building: Challenge, Commitment and Control.

    Click here for the slides from the session.


  • 20 Oct 2018 9:38 AM | Jane Watson (Administrator)

    Chances are you've had a damaging, possibly even traumatic, work experience at some point in your career. Attendees at this session brought their own experience as individuals in the workforce, and as OD practitioners, into the discussion on the impact of unwell workplaces.

    Christine's used her background as a front line community mental health clinician, HR & OD leader, and leadership and team coach to open up a nuanced conversation about "Post Traumatic Job Disorder". She defined this as "a severe reaction to a change in the workplace that causes you to feel like you have lost your sense of self. Everyday, pieces of you are being chipped away."

    She was quick to point out that this isn't a disorder; rather it's an experience that sits on the continuum between stress and a more serious mental health diagnosis, like adjustment disorder. The label PTJD is intended to allow for discussions about the serious and ongoing impact created by working in an environment where an employee feels targeted, isolated, and systematically shut down.

    The group discussed their own experiences of damaging work environments, where we noted recurring themes related to feeling powerless, un-valued, isolated, directionless, and incompetent which led to the erosion of confidence, stress, and depressed thinking.

    Christine and out attendees also shared coping strategies for individuals who find themselves in this type of work situation, and how to recover and thrive afterwards.

  • 29 Sep 2018 10:01 AM | Jane Watson (Administrator)

    This event lived up to its title, providing ample opportunity for participants to interact and contribute our own perspectives and insights. Jennifer started the evening with an entertaining and resonant overview of how often we can get stuck when the unexpected inevitably happens at work or in life. When we accept the 'script' that we're handed (by our organization, boss, clients, families, or society) we cut ourselves off to the opportunities around us - opportunities for creative solutions, deepened relationships, and new insights.

    Jennifer explained some of the central principles of improv as a framework for examining workplace and team dynamics, and our ow responses to them. Then we put these into practice in small groups, with fun exercises that even an introvert like me found enjoyable. Lots of laughter ensued, and Jennifer made space for participants to share their observations and insights about how our group interactions related to common team and org dynamics. This is why I love the TODN - I learn so much from our great speakers AND our members!

    You can download summaries of Jennifer's content using these links:

  • 21 Jun 2018 6:30 PM | Kelly Rubin (Administrator)

    What better way to try out a webcast event format than with the dynamic and engaging professional speaker and “recognition expert,” Sarah McVanel! Approximately 20 participants logged on to hear Sarah’s tips for establishing a thriving independent consulting business. Promoting the idea of professional vision boards, Sarah encouraged listeners to ask themselves what their business would look like if 2019 was their most successful year yet. Her top 5 recommendations were to diversify revenue streams, be an expert in your niche area, focus on service (vs. sales), get help, and recognize yourself daily.

    Related Resources:


  • 15 May 2018 3:33 PM | Jami Monte (Administrator)

    The ice storm threw us all for a loop this year but to our surprise Toronto’s weather agreed to warm up in time for the annual TODN Summer Social.

    The night was filled with some aha moments, warm laughter and energized discussion amongst members. We were lucky to have Helle Bundgaard, author of The Motivated Brain, walk us through some key insights around human behaviour and motivation. She starting off with a well received analogy: our brain is our hardware and our own personal story develops our software, we need to learn to become a superuser of our own brain.

    We learned about energy drainers and tied them in with our own personal expectations and needs. Helle reminded us of the differences between short term and long term motivation, and of course, that we cannot motivate other people if they are not motivated to be motivated!

    And with that, I can say I am now feeling quite motivated find my motivation...

  • 01 May 2018 1:04 PM | Katrina DeAngelis (Administrator)

    What a wonderful event! Renée Bazile-Jones, Senior Director Learning, Canadian Centre for Diversity and Inclusion facilitated a wonderful interactive session on Diversity, Inclusion, and Innovation for us in April. Renee defines diversity as “the mix” and inclusion as “getting the mix to work well together”. Diversity and inclusion practices are a key component of every company culture and sometimes we don’t even realize where our own hidden biases come from or when they are coming out to play. Renée had us working on our own identities and our ‘front seat dimensions’. Renee also talked about cognitive diversity and how the organization and individuals benefit from leveraging the full potential of people’s uniqueness. Thank you, Renée for delivering such a thought-provoking and insightful session that I believe is a must for every organization to engage in!


  • 17 Mar 2018 11:52 AM | Aminata N'Doye (Administrator)

    Our speaker, Lee-Anne McAlear, promised us a hands-on experience in applying Design Thinking methodology – and boy, did she deliver!  Using a very simple example, attendees were paired in groups of two to work through the methodology. Pairs first started off by engaging their partner to understand their emotional drivers and other motivators. These were recapped into a problem statement, which was foundational for brainstorming innovative solutions. Solutions were shared, feedback was gathered and integrated into designing a new solution.  Lots of fun was had using unconventional materials to build prototypes. Once shared, additional feedback was gathered on what worked well and what could be improved.

    What was really fascinating was the creativity each attendee showed in designing solutions and building prototypes (captured in the pictures below – thanks for taking these, Lee-Anne!).





    There were several key takeaways from the session: the end-solution will be dramatically different than what is originally envisioned (which is a good thing!), the need to let go of preconceived notions/solutions and to leverage creativity instead, and not forming an attachment to the prototype/solution because there are multiple iterative stages with design thinking.

    Though the example we played with was simple, the methodology is definitely transferrable to OD. Some participants shared how they integrated design thinking methodology in their OD work, which transformed outcomes.

  • 13 Feb 2018 12:11 PM | Anonymous

    What an overwhelmingly affirmative way to start our first event for 2018 by delving into Positive Psychology. Carrying through our theme of Innovation in OD, Our speaker, Sajel Bellon created Canada’s first Positive Psychology Certificate program for Wilfrid Laurier University, where she currently instructs in the program.

    Sajel’s depth of knowledge, skill as a speaker and her enthusiasm for the topic engaged our members with an interactive session that provided tools and strategies to enhance the well-being of your people, but also assist in identifying and leveraging their strengths to optimize performance outcomes. Sajel provided a truly insightful presentation and really interesting discourse for our members. 

    Our AGM followed next, and we elected three new board members - welcome Katrina DeAngelis as Membership Director, Jami Monte as Treasurer, and Jane Watson as Technology Director. Melissa Hartley and Terri Duguay are staying on as Board Members at large. With this talented and creative team I'm looking forward to an amazing 2018 for TODN!


  • 20 Nov 2017 4:37 PM | Aminata N'Doye (Administrator)

    What better way to end the year than with our last event on the 2017 TODN calendar: Winter Social & Wise Crowd Consulting.

    The social presented a great opportunity to connect with colleagues and hear about the interesting work they are doing in OD. It was also a chance to meet and welcome new faces into our community. The Intentional Networking segment was an awesome way for participants to “crowdsource” help for whatever they needed assistance with, whether it was an issue, challenge or interest.

    For Wise Crowd, leaders from various sectors shared their perspectives, challenges, and opportunities regarding innovation. The leader presented their innovation challenge to a smaller group and received different ideas and perspectives from our community members on solving it. What was particularly fun was hearing different thoughts on the issue and building on each other’s ideas. For the leaders, turning their chair around while the group shared advice provided them with the ability to better hear and reflect on the ideas shared.

    A few quotes from the evening:

    “Loved it, along with being able to riff off of people. We presented different perspectives and had the opportunity to capitalize on them.”

    “Amazed the comments weren’t specific to OD – it showed a real breadth of experience.”

    “People with a lot of experience just let it fly!”

    “It was a privilege to be part of the problem solving and to chat among colleagues – it was a two way dialogue.”

    “[To the leaders] bringing your stories means being vulnerable to outsiders. It really was an act of courage to bear your soul.” Many thanks to our leaders for participating so openly in this consulting process.


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