Joe Gillivan recently joined TEC Canada as the new Chair for Halifax, NS, and kindly took some time out to talk to us about his new role and what he hopes to bring to the TEC experience for his members.
Why did you become a Chair?
I am passionate about leadership. Every day I get up and aspire to be a servant leader. Excellence in leadership creates profound change for not only the company or organization but also for the individual employees, which in turn creates change in society and communities. I went back to school and trained for two years to become certified as a Professional Executive Coach because I believe in the power of great leadership. Finding the TEC organization and aligning my skills and passion has presented me with a perfect match. All along I said the reason I was going back to school to become an Executive Coach was to help Lead Leaders. In my role as a TEC Chair I will have the opportunity to help leaders become great at what they do and effect real change for those they lead.
What piece of your experience/expertise do you think will be relevant to your Groups/will help your members grow?
I have embraced leadership roles for most of my life. I was the eldest child of six children and went on to boarding school and was appointed prefect, from there I entered the hotel industry and worked for the largest hotel management company in Canada. I am a leader that is passionate about continued improvement in every aspect of leadership. I was always drawn to leadership and a value of life long learning. This value lead to an extensive commitment to volunteerism and community leadership over the past twenty years and the decision to go back to school to become certified as a Professional Executive Coach. One of the main characteristics of being a great coach is being a good listener, hearing what is really being said and understanding how to help leaders clarify and create action plans to achieve desired results. My past management experience, community leadership and training as a coach provides me with both the heart and the skill set to be a TEC Chair.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing Canadian business today?
TRUST – We need to believe in ourselves, in what we can accomplish and be confident in our abilities to be world class. There is a real reluctance to be bold, to innovate and create new business dynamics and conditions in Canada to create excellence and world-class achievements. Our economy compared to other countries is very stable, we have not experienced the financial melt down that most other western countries have faced and we have more natural resources than many other countries that punch above our weight. What we lack is a trust in our own ability to be innovative, to educate and create new conditions to win and win big.
What do you see as the biggest challenge facing business leaders as individuals?
Adapting and maximizing the demographic shifts today and in the future: Leaders need to prepare and adapt their leadership styles and skill sets for a world that is changing in terms of age demographics, new technologies and immigration populations. Our economic environment is moving from the knowledge economy to the innovation economy. The present models in business and leadership will not be sustainable in the near future, as more companies grapple with the baby boomers retiring, succession planning, attracting and retaining new talent. Leaders will need to inspire people to want to work for them, to understand why they are needed and where they clearly fit inside the organization. TEC Canada is very well positioned to play a key role for leaders in helping them learn to navigate this new world reality.
How do you keep your work life balance?
I truly believe in keeping my physical, spiritual, personal and professional life in balance. I achieve this balance by living in the moment, having fun at every aspect of my life, staying positive and supporting my family, community and friends. I love nature and treasure my times on the ocean sailing and walking in the woods. I find creative expression in the culinary arts, I love to cook and to savour great wines and nothing pleases me more than a full table of family and friends enjoying great food and conversation. I am an avid reader and enjoy reading books on a wide range of topics.