Patti Balsillie | Management Consulting | June 26, 2020
Join Yukon Entrepreneur Patti Balsillie, owner of Patti Balsillie Management Consulting. Patti is a northern and national management consultant with 30+ years in the Yukon. She specializes in governance, tourism and community economic development and currently serves on the board of the Canadian Crown Corporation for tourism, Destination Canada.
(2:35) Patti is really inspired by the social innovation she’s seeing take root across the territory and how Yukoners are starting to transform the economy to embrace the principles of a more circular approach to development that focuses on building community as well as revenue generation and sustainability.
(3:25) Patti explains that the Arctic Inspiration Prize's vision and intention to inspire northern innovation and opportunity through the tenants of: innovation, collaboration and a novel approach to advance impact. It’s a prize that is “of the north, for the north and by the north.”
(5:55) Patti has pivoted her approach to her business because of the state of life of many of her clients. She’s had to move more of her work online but she’s also had to postpone or cancel many of her meetings, events and travel. Her consulting work has slowed down providing an opportunity to witness and contribute to how Canada is responding. She has to be patient and reduce spending but is hopeful for the remainder of 2020. While there is no We crystal ball for how the pandemic will shape what comes, she is seeing more than ever the importance of collaboration. Everything that we (the world) used to know about our key markets in tourism has been disrupted so there is ongoing work to get new datasets about key markets. As she looks forward, it’s not just about partnerships, it'll be about thinking, visioning and working together to build the territory and nation that we desire.
(7:55) For Patti, as an extrovert and a people person (a hugger!) she found the request to stay home for weeks on end really challenging. But she also saw a lot of strengthening of relationships and opportunity to celebrate and express gratitude for our essential workers.
(10:05) Patti’s grateful to see leaders across the country recognizing the solutions and path forward through this pandemic are unclear. She’s seeing leadership derive strength and direction from within their community and teams, expressing their vulnerability, thinking compassionately and focusing on teamwork.
(11:20) Patti is thinking about her business differently by having patience with herself and reaching out to colleagues and clients to check-in.
(12:35) When the pandemic first came to the territory she focused her wellness practice on being outside and developing a fitness routine and ritual in nature.
(13:40) Patti is looking for inspiration all around her. In tourism, she’s seeing that those businesses that have tourism assets, infrastructure and products have to figure out how to repurpose or pivot in new ways. She’s also seeing innovation in action in the territory right now in many businesses. As we continue on our path of reopening, she sees opportunity for us to all be more congenial and grateful to those who are essential workers.
(15:00) Patti recently re-read the “Idea of Canada” by former Governor General of Canada, the Honourable David Johnston. It’s a thought provoking book compiling a series of letters to a nation. She also recommends Goldy Hyder’s (CEO of the Canadian Business Council) podcast “Speaking of Business” (https://speakingofbiz.ca/). For inspiration and a lighter side to Canada, she recommends that we check out the audiobook (or book) by Rick Mercer called, “The Final Report” and new essays at the end about how Canada needs to embrace Canada more.
(17:17) Patti hopes that as Yukon reopens that we focus on working together in a very kind way. It’s not about creating shame or fear but respecting each other, the public health measures and working together. She hopes that the Yukon leads the way for all of Canada.
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