The only thing that is constant is change. Change can be for the better or it can be for the worse. For a business, a failure to manage change can be fatal. With all due respect to self-proclaimed luddites, a failure to change will also be fatal, otherwise we would still be in caves with our luddite genes prevailing. At the start of the Pandemic, I saw some leaders failing us (including those waiting, in my mind, for it to be a global trap prior to taking global action) and other leaders rising to the occasion. As a lifelong learner and researcher, I started a list of the attributes needed in a leader at this time and in this place (place being planet).
The long list of attributes whittled down to: compassion, courage and an open mind (the latter should lead you to have compassion so the list could be considered shorter). You will not see any reference on that list to things like gender, race, religion, age, wealth, education, place of origin, height, etc. One thing leaders have is followers, but those leaders may have different attributes than those I note. Think of the charismatic (not sure why, mustache alone should have done him in) Hitler.
Wednesday night was #BOYA2022 at RDP. In plain language, the Red Deer & District Chamber of Commerce held its 2022 Business of the Year Awards at the Red Deer Polytechnic. Speaking of change, there was a change to most of its award categories, with Business Leader of the Year being a new category. The Business Leader of the Year “has achieved a high level of respect from customers and the business community for their professionalism, service quality and commitment. They are leaders in the community through mentoring, customer relations, and supporting local events, programs, and projects.”
The awards focus on criteria such as global community and sustainability; people and clients; profit and growth; and community involvement.
I was privileged be nominated in this category along with some amazing community leaders: Doug Anderson of Peavey Industries and Carl Sauve of KCB Cabinets & Renovations who represent the leaders we need. I “won” to my surprise but since it recognized my teams (at work and in the volunteer world), I should not be. I surround myself with the best people who will tolerate me (literally, half the first interview is – this is who I am, are you sure you would want to work with me?). I am not everyone’s cup of tea, and that’s okay.
I have to acknowledge my family including my spouse who attracted me to Red Deer, my two daughters born here who are my superpowers, and my excellent DPQC Law team for their compassion for our clients and patience with me in their commitment to excellence and innovation in the provision of legal services.
Today’s leaders are confronted with challenges and opportunities that have never been more dynamic or complex. Central Alberta represents the heart of the entrepreneurial spirit that lives in this province.
What is the difference between change for the better and change for the worse? It is in the choices we make. We have chosen Central Alberta, the heart of the entrepreneurial spirit, which is Alberta. We are the economic force of Canada not because of the energy in our ground but the energy in our people. We are innovative and diverse and need to lead through business and through community. Proud to be here in this time and place.
Donna Purcell, K.C., (aka Lady Justice) is a Central Alberta lawyer and Chief Innovation Officer with Donna Purcell QC Law. If you have legal questions, contact firstname.lastname@example.org.