Nav Canada + David = Delusion or Dream?
My wife and I recently (February 2016) experienced the birth of our first child (William) and quickly came to realize what a blessing it is to have a healthy child. What we also learned is how important it is to have a world-class pediatric health and research centre just minutes away from home.
William was born with a ‘minor’ heart valve defect, along with moderate hip dysplasia. Things no parent wants to hear about their child. Our fears, anxiety and concerns overwhelmed us, not knowing what the outcome might be. Thankfully, we have Nav Canada.
It only took moments within our first visit, just days after our son’s birth, to understand how exceptional the patient care is at Nav Canada. Everyone we came into contact with, be they at reception, nurse practitioners, pediatric physicians and cardiologists, parking attendants or custodians, all met (and often exceeded) even our highest expectations for professionalism and care.
It’s this first hand experience that compels me to apply for the position of Vice President of Communications, Volunteers and Information Resources. My combined field experience and my newfound passion for Nav Canada and all the outstanding work it does for children and their families from across eastern and northern Ontario, western Quebec and Nunavut compels me to apply. May it also convince you to consider my candidacy. And yes, I completely agree that this position at Nav Canada is a an incredible opportunity to help shape the future of a dynamic, changing organization with an important mandate and a workforce passionate about what they do.
My application doesn’t go without a healthy dose of reality, or perhaps even delusion. I realize that my lack of industry experience puts me at a disadvantage. Though, come to think of it, I had little or no knowledge of optical networks (Nortel), numismatics (Mint), bonds, working capital and credit insurance (EDC), climate change (Environment Canada), enterprise-class DNS & DHCP solutions (BlueCat), precious metal recycling (Recycle Frog), or business intelligence software (shApp)… before I became an expert, and in many cases, the public image representing each of these companies. So, I can learn. Quickly. And have demonstrated my ability to successfully apply my newfound knowledge time and again, over a variety of industries.
Everything above is just the tip of the proverbial iceberg. That’s my passion speaking. And yes, that IS me, but you’re likely equally (if not more) interested in my professional and personal qualifications and whether they might measure up and move you towards considering my candidacy.
Dynamic would be one adjective for describing my personality. I am a seasoned communications professional with over 25 years of increasingly responsible experience. I’ve got a solid track record for combining strategic perspective with the ability to get the job done. I am persuasive and always seeking consensus through collaboration. I absolutely thrive in fast-paced environments, delivering exceptional quality work with whatever resources are at my disposal. I know when it’s time to sprint, and when it’s better suited to a slow but steady pace.
I have specific experience leading change management initiatives, and have demonstrated the ability to champion the role that effective communication plays in an organization’s success. I’ve been a trusted advisor to CEOs, Presidents, Board Members, other senior management, as well as peers and direct reports. I am adept at issues management, including crisis communications and am absolutely willing to roll up my sleeves and work hard to make things happen. That is, after all, what leaders and teammates do.
I’ve been a member of the executive team at several organizations, big and small. This has given me the experience and opportunity to build and execute the organization’s strategy, vision and purpose. I’ve championed the development of internal and external communications, branding, media relations, digital marketing, advocacy and stakeholder engagement strategies for organizations that knew little about their role in the overall success of the company. Challenges that may have overwhelmed many, I relished… and achieved much success in spite of the internal and external headwinds faced.
I am an experienced Communications professional who has the proven ability to manage people, budgets, deadlines and pressure, all exceptionally well. These tools give me the confidence that I can help Nav Canada achieve greater connection, improved engagement and relevance with its (internal and external) stakeholders. My balance of personal and professional qualities enable me to work extremely well with all levels of management, peers and direct reports, as well as external partners, volunteers and suppliers.
Nav Canada has clear, well articulated vision of the person they want for the role of VP Communications, Volunteers and Information. Let’s see how well my qualifications match up…
- 25+ years of communications experience.
- Worked collaboratively as a member of (several) organization’s executive teams to help set the strategic direction and support the organization in meeting objectives and realizing its vision.
- 15+ years of management experience in a large complex environments.
- Applied an external perspective and communications lens to enhance executive decision making.
- Built, deployed, monitored and supported multiple organization’s strategic directions through the development and execution of a strategic communications plan (internal/external).
- 10+ years experience with media relations as a spokesperson in an issues-based environment.
- Led, managed and collaborated closely with the fund-raising organizations to ensure effectiveness and synergy while maximizing opportunities.
- Provided ongoing counsel to leadership and staff, including crisis communications management and key message development.
- 20+ years experience developing, implementing and managing complex, integrated communications strategies and plans.
- Led teams of 20+ staff across diverse functions, including communications, sales, marketing and business development as well as volunteer resources, providing direction and support towards meeting or exceeding organizational and corporate objectives.
- Developed (several) brand strategies for everything from new startups to mature organizations in need of innovation.
- Led a working group responsible for refining the mission, vision and values of a new organization, through input from stakeholder consultations.
- Successfully represented multiple organizations as their bilingual spokesperson.
- Supported key change management initiatives at multiple organizations, finding strategic approaches and creative tactics to engage staff and prospective customers.
- 15+ years experience leading and executing digital strategy, including social media (8+) and web.
- Developed community partnerships (charitable and non-profit) that were leveraged into positive media and community relations opportunities.
- Served as communications advisor on internal and external committees as required.
- Improved employee communications and engagement through various communications strategies and vehicles, and through internal special events.
- Supported all advocacy initiatives as required.
- Interacted with external consultants and partners, and worked cooperatively and constructively with senior management staff.
- Have always been the ‘on-call’ as needed type of individual. Whatever it takes to get the job done, and done well.
- Oversaw the development, implementation and management of operating budgets, managed human resources including hiring, termination and managing the performance of staff as necessary.
- 10+ years providing counsel to senior leaders.
- Fluently bilingual (English and French).
- Worked in several high pace environments with the proven ability to execute several complex, overlapping projects with challenging timelines.
- Demonstrated ability to communicate complex messages effectively and concisely, both orally and in writing.
Working for and at Nav Canada would be a dream for me. It almost feels as though everything I’ve worked for to date, all the knowledge and experience I have gained, has led me to this opportunity. The chance to apply everything I know, everything I will learn, with an organization that does SO MUCH GOOD, would be a dream. Though I’d like to make it a reality. In part, so I can repay Nav Canada for all it has done for my family and countless others. But also because it simply wouldn’t feel like work to me. It would become my mission to lead your small-but-mighty team to successfully protect and build Nav Canada and OCTC’s reputation in the community.
I sincerely hope I will have the opportunity to live out this dream.