Leadership Strategist, Thinker & Best-Selling Author
Dan Pontefract is a leadership strategist, keynote speaker, best-selling author and he founded the Pontefract Group in 2014.
The four books he authored, LEAD. CARE. WIN., OPEN TO THINK, THE PURPOSE EFFECT, and FLAT ARMY, are all critically acclaimed and best-sellers.
His third book, OPEN TO THINK, is the 2019 Get Abstract International Book of the Year winner and the 2019 Axiom Business Book Award Silver Medal winner in the Leadership category.
A renowned speaker, Dan has presented at four different TED events and also writes for Forbes and Harvard Business Review. Dan is an adjunct professor at the University of Victoria, Gustavson School of Business, and has garnered more than 20 industry awards over his career.
Previously as Chief Envisioner and Chief Learning Officer at TELUS — a Canadian telecommunications company with revenues of $14 billion and 50,000 global employees—he launched the Transformation Office, the TELUS MBA, and the TELUS Leadership Philosophy, all award-winning initiatives that dramatically helped to increase the company’s employee engagement to record levels of nearly 90%. Prior to TELUS, he held senior roles at SAP, Business Objects, and BCIT.
“We’re not here to see through each other; we’re here to see each other through.”
There are only two kinds of leadership in this world: leading self and leading others. It’s that simple, only two. Your ultimate goal is to master and deliver on them both. In the midst of a pandemic, times are as complex as ever. Now, more than ever, how you lead yourself and others might become the defining moment of your leadership career.
There are nine key leadership lessons that make up a leader who cares. Considerate and engaging leaders—ones who fully (and completely) understand the critical importance of crafting meaningful, respectful relationships among all stakeholders—are leaders who know how to handle events such as pandemics, working from home, and other bumps that require a deeper form of resilience.
Every human interaction is crucial. Every exchange can be mutually beneficial. The 9 leadership lessons we will discuss center on your willingness to:
The bottom line is that when you care enough to champion others, the workplace becomes happily engaged and your organization benefits in more ways than one.
Leaders may not know it yet, but having a sense of purpose has become table stakes for many employees at work. Equally important, today’s organizations are being pressured to begin exhibiting purpose in their operating practices. If there is a positive interconnection between the three distinct categories of purpose–personal, role and organization—the benefits will be felt by all stakeholders.
Author Dan Pontefract refers to this balanced state of purpose as the ‘sweet spot.’ The alignment of purpose between self, role and organization is critically important for both employees and leaders. The more a leader can assist employees to understand this alignment of purpose, the quicker everyone will recognize how important the ‘sweet spot’ is to an engaging and fulfilling lifetime of work. The quicker an employee defines, develops and decides their purpose—alongside how bought in they are to the organization’s purpose—the more engaged and innovative they will be in their role … and in their life in general.
Ever wonder why global levels of employee engagement in organizations continue to wane and remain so incredibly low? For leaders in any organization seeking to improve productivity and business results, they must first start with their own operating culture. To improve organizational culture is to build up and unleash behaviours that permit employees to connect and collaborate with one another effortlessly and full of goodwill. An employee only becomes engaged when the culture is open, transparent, communicative, collaborative, and trustworthy. These are just some of the behaviours that must define how an organization operates.
Author Dan Pontefract implores organizations to rethink their workplace culture by instituting systemic-wide behaviours that encourage one another to work together versus in silos or competitively. The engagement of employees occurs as a result of how they feel about the organization’s culture and its purpose. There is a way to fix it, and Dan has a way to help you out.
Many of our current systems train us merely to function. We learn the routine. We master the process. The regiment starts at school, continues at university, and goes into overdrive when we begin to work. The problem? Ultimately we have lost the ability to think critically, to be creative, and to contemplate ideas of the unknown. Standards, procedures, technology, and an incessant demand for short-term results over long-term planning are the big winners. In order to mitigate such calamities including the relentless pursuit of action and the pressure to “do more with less,” individuals must return to a state of balance between the three components of productive thought: dreaming, deciding and doing.
In this talk, author Dan Pontefract introduces tangible, actionable strategies to improve the way we think as organizations and individuals through the cyclical process of Creative Thinking, Critical Thinking and Applied Thinking. To become an Open Thinker, one must understand the relationship between reflection and action, and how it can negatively or positively affect an outcome. Dream. Decide. Do, Repeat.