Like many of you, I’m finding my own rhythm  in the world of work through a pandemic.  I do hope you and your loved ones are keeping safe and remembering to take some self-care breaks. In this issue of the Frankly Speaking newsletter I’ll cover Your Organizational DNA (and how to get more clear), an introduction to a new colleague who I met through her on-line learning platform, upcoming workshops (first one is Wednesday, August 26th) through September, and some great news that will make life a little easier when I’m working from Victoria, BC. 

Getting Clear(er) – Your Organizational DNA Gaining clarity about your organizational DNA can take many forms, each adding to a truer and clearer picture of why you exist and what you do. We often refer to these elements as:

  • Mission and Vision Statements

  • Strategic Plans and Frameworks

  • Guiding Principles or Values

I did some work with the great folks at FortWhyte Alive in Winnipeg, helping them to define their eight guiding principles. The approach we took was collaborative and inclusive, and we had fun with the process!  After doing some initial survey work with a broad range of their stakeholders, from board to volunteers and staff to visitors, we held a full day session with management and staff whereby we ‘humanized’ FortWhyte Alive and created a character description of the person – head, heart, body, movement, presence, and values. Those characteristics were then converted into organizational aspects and organizational identity. This allowed us to create words or phrases and explanations that encompass the values and the guiding principles of FortWhyte Alive. The results can be viewed here. Vice President Ian Barnett states: “From start to finish, our experience with Frank was incredibly positive. He provided gentle guidance throughout the process and when our staff team gathered as a group we found his facilitation skills to be excellent. He was able to effectively summarize the collective thoughts of numerous stakeholders and provide us with a finished product that we are very satisfied with.”   In this group picture you can see our ‘humanized’ FortWhyte Alive in the background.  

Zoom, Zoom and more Zoom
Online facilitation, learning, and meetings are here to stay! Here comes Beth Cougler Blom to the rescue, or at least to offer some great advice.

Beth is an online teaching whiz! I first met her through a FLO (Facilitating Learning Online) course that she offered through her learning design and facilitation business. It was great, and so I then participated in another course that she co-facilitated about Liberating Structures, also a wonderful experience.  I wanted you all to be aware of the work she does and how we can all get better at this online stuff we are involved in. Learn more about how Beth is supporting clients in all sectors to design and facilitate online courses at (And check out her recent blog posts full of tips about using Zoom!)

I’d also like to share some great news.

Kelly Kurta of the Greater Victoria Festival Society has agreed to share her office space with me while I’m working in Victoria.  Located in Volunteer Victoria’s office downtown, it feels great to have a ‘second home’.  Thanks for the warm welcome Kelly!

Talk soon,


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