Tag Archives: ottawa business women

Courageous Women of Ottawa

28 Oct

IMG_20131023_180538Last week in Ottawa, I had the pleasure of organizing my first Women’s Business Network event at the Bytown Museum, a “Celebration of Courageous Women” that included looking back at the ladies who helped build Ottawa—women like Donalda Charron, Lady Aberdeen, Lady Minto, Mother McGinty and more. It was such a great event, so great that I’m going to share a little here with you to recapture the experience.

For those of you who don’t know, the Bytown Museum is located along the Rideau Canal between the Château Laurier and Parliament Hill. Not a bad location! As members and guests of the WBN arrived, they were welcomed into one of the oldest museums of Canada, founded originally in 1898 by the Women’s Canadian Historical Society of Ottawa (even back then ladies were networking and making a difference) .

Gathering on the main floor of this amazing building, the evening started off with some conversation and networking. WBN members know how to work a room, so business cards were exchanged and new connections were formed. But in between all that very good stuff was Mother McGinty. We’ll share more on the actual Mother McGinty in another post, but on the 22nd of October, her spirit was captured beautifully by Pat Marshall, who was with us that evening in full costume and deep in character as she tried to recruit girls with nice ankles to work over at her bar.

IMG_20131023_180424A highlight of the evening for me was the storytelling session.  Storyteller Ruth Stewart-Verger was with us to share the history of Donalda Charron. Ruth captivated us as she told the story of Les Allumettières, also known as the Eddy match girls. Les Allumettières were a group of young women who were led by Donalda Charron, their Maîtresse, to strike against the Eddy Match Company when their wages were threatened to be cut by half. It is such a moving story about knowing when to push back and how to stand strong. There will be more on that to come in the future.

There was more in to evening as well. Following the story of Donalda Charron, there was dessert (important to mention, as well, let’s not forget the hor d’oeuvre from Mother McGinty Copious Menu catered by Sucré, Salé), more chatting over insights the story had raised, more networking and card exchanges, and then we had a ghost-station tour. Moving station to station, we learned of past politicians, mill owners, new brides, vengeful lovers and even the Bytown Museum’s own ghost, Duncan McNab.

The evening was topped off with a little more conversation and a draw for some beautiful gifts, including a tea set donated by Sister Leadership.

It was (to use that classic phrase) a night to remember.

Even before the Celebration of Courageous Women event, the story of Donalda Charron had inspired me. However, I was even more engaged as Ruth shared Donald’as story with our group. As Ruth spoke about her life, I could see Donalda as a young girl taking care of her family, as a young women advancing in the match factory, as a supervisor who cared for her employees, and as a fighter who stuck to her convictions. We hope to share some more stories of Ottawa’s amazing women with you here on Sister Leadership, so that you can pull inspiration from their lives (and their spiritual intelligence) too.

So until next week, keep well.

(And if you missed this year’s event, don’t worry! There are talks of doing it again next year.)

Till next week,

Cam

Camille Boivin is founder of Sister Leadership, certified in EQi 2.0 and EQ360, a master practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), has been coaching high-level women and men for over six years, and is now opening her expertise to those emerging in business. Camille pulls her blog topics from her unique coaching approach that combines her training as a EQi 2.0 and EQ360 certified facilitator with the dig-deeper tools of NLP.

Get in touch here if you’d like to talk with Cam about group or one-on-one coaching, and EQ assessments. With the miracle of Skype and telephones – distance is no issue!

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Reality Testing Your Business

23 Sep

Have you ever heard of reality testing? It’s the ability to keep your emotions from excessively influencing how you interpret events (i.e. to be objective). Reality testing can be a great tool when working in a team, assessing a problem or . . . when launching your own business. Ottawa entrepreneur, Ashley Grandy has been kind enough to answer some questions this week around the theme of reality testing.

Along with her business partner, Ashley has launched an interested concept for the city of Ottawa with her business, Safe Way Home. This driving service drives home clients when they are no longer within legal limits of alcohol consumption.  But not only that – they drive your car home too. So the next morning. Ashley’s company is now in talks with some very big clients (as you’ll see. Think “Hockey”), but it’s taken some serious objective thinking to get this far in her company’s success.

Ashley, would you describe yourself as a realist or an idealist? How does this description manifest itself in your job?

“Realist. I have realistic expectations when it comes to clients and have pragmatic expectations for the pace of my business’ growth; putting time, energy, money, planning and personal investment into this business long before receiving financial reward.”

Can you describe a time when you should have listened to your instincts rather than being so objective. How do you confirm that your instincts are reliable?

My business partner at the growth stages felt that we wouldn’t be successful and wanted to cut our losses and give up.  I felt that it was premature and truly believed we had the foundation of a successful business if we could just get through the difficult beginning stages.  Now that we are in talks with the Senators and the calls are coming steadily, I’m happy I held my ground.

That’s why this business has been rewarding on both a professional and personal level; I’m learning to trust my instincts because I was fully prepared to learn a lot about business and had been researching, working hard and studying consequently but was unaware of the personal growth that would parallel this learning curve.

How would others describe the goals you set (Big hairy Goals or more attainable goals in small steps)? What information do you take into account when you set these goals?

Others would describe the goals I set as small, stable, safe, attainable goals.  What they don’t see is the large goals I am pursuing.  I have many visions but use them solely as a guide to setting the smaller, more attainable goals. It is these goals that other people are following that, in my mind, are just the steps necessary to attain the final objective.

When setting these smaller, more realistic goals, I consider my staff, co-workers and the tools they have to succeed in executing these goals and attaining this sense of achievement.  For the larger vision I have I consider the direction I want the business to go and how I want my business to appear; the personality I want my ‘Safe Way Home’ to exude to the public and the details necessary for achieving this goal.

~

Sister Leadership would like to issue a huge thanks to Ashley for sharing so openly about her experience with reality testing. Safe Way Home caters to individuals, corporations and events, and we with Ashley and her team the best of successes as they continue to grow.

cararesourcesSo why is reality testing important for your emotional intelligence? That’s what we’re asking and answering in this week’s Sister Leadership resource from the tool box. This week we are giving you eleven key take-aways of assumption to help you stay objective. First on the list, “You cannot not communicate.” Click her to read the rest of the snippets, and learn their meanings.

Till next week!

Cam

Camille Boivin is founder of Sister Leadership, certified in EQi 2.0 and EQ360, a master practitioner of Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP), has been coaching high-level women and men for over six years, and is now opening her expertise to those emerging in business. Camille pulls her blog topics from her unique coaching approach that combines her training as a EQi 2.0 and EQ360 certified facilitator with the dig-deeper tools of NLP.

Get in touch here if you’d like to talk with Cam about group or one-on-one coaching, and EQ assessments. With the miracle of Skype and telephones – distance is no issue!

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