Engaged workplace: Creating cultures of leadership, inclusivity, wellness and innovation

This program has been pre-approved for 10 CPD hours by HRPA
This program has been pre-approved for 10 CPD hours by HRPA
9:00 am

Opening keynote session

Empowering women in leadership: Moving the dial on inclusiveness

Empowering females into executive positions is crucial in today’s economy, with companies performing better when able to leverage the different perspectives and results women bring to the leadership table. HR leaders must go beyond paying lip service to new initiatives and build more substance behind their diversity agendas.


Join Jodi Kovitz – one of the world’s most influential women in business – in an opening keynote as she shares ideas, strategies and proven tactics for advancing women leadership and increasing inclusiveness in the workplace. In the spotlight:

  • Why female empowerment is the key to the future of Canada’s economy
  • How can we strive to empower women and reduce the gender gap?
  • How can we get more women on boards and in executive roles?
  • How can we support women in leadership roles?

Jodi Kovitz, CEO & Founder, #MoveTheDial; Canada’s Top 25 Women of Influence 2018 and Canada’s Top 100 Most Powerful Women 2017

10:45 am

HRD’s CHRO series: Leading with compassion

Canada’s most prominent CHROs will reveal their insights on the key trends, innovations, opportunities and challenges shaking up the world of work.

Jason Fleming, Vice President, Human Resources, MedReleaf, a wholly owned subsidiary of Aurora Cannabis

11:00 am

Fit Break

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11:05 am

Networking coffee break

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11:45 am


Leadership development for HR: Crushing Imposter Syndrome in its tracks

We all hear it. That little voice inside your head that quietly says “but I’m not ready … what if they find out that I’m an imposter”? It’s Imposter Syndrome; the feeling that, no matter how qualified you are, you’re not good enough to be doing what you’re doing.

But there’s a difference between not being qualified and not feeling qualified.

Women often spend inordinate amounts of time attributing successes to accident. Failure comes from lack of skill and ability. Success is just down to luck. How does that make sense?

Join us to learn seven key steps to crushing imposter syndrome in Its tracks.

Denise Roy, Vice President, Human Resources, Cardinal Couriers

Innovation on a budget: Meeting Leaders where they are to give them the tools they need to succeed

In the era of Google and Buzzfeed, people are used to having information at their fingertips. Coupled with reduced attention spans and a fast-paced sector, how can learning in a corporate context compete? Sienna Senior Living owns, manages and operates more than 85 Long Term Care and Retirement Residences in Ontario and British Columbia; each its own unique microcosm of leaders and team members. We’ve almost doubled in size in under 5 years and continue to grow. Our challenge? How do we continually engage and grow the team of more than 12,000, while supporting the business objectives of a rapidly expanding company?

Answer: by meeting people where they are. By asking questions. By keeping it simple and fun and relevant. Their recipe takes minimal investments in technology, adds communication and relationship building, and mixes in smart learning strategies.

The result: finding, growing and keeping the best....

Leanne Joffre, Senior Director, Sienna Senior Living

Farheen Nathoo, Senior Manager of Learning and Development, Sienna Senior Living

12:30 pm
1:30 pm


HR tech update: Harnessing technology as a change agent for your organization

It’s a digital landscape out there. People practices are evolving. Technology is advancing rapidly. Organizations are transforming to keep pace. HR is at the intersection of all these factors and must successfully navigate their organisations through these changes.

Learn how HR leaders can drive productivity, innovation and new business opportunities by creating an actionable vision to embrace technology as a tool for change. Drawing on the latest research, this session will provide insight on:

  • The global technology trends transforming the world of work
  • The impact technology is having on the Canadian economy
  • How HR leaders can take advantage of technology within their organisations
  • Overcoming the disconnect between employee and employer through technological innovations

David Heather, Vice President, Human Resources, ADP Canada

Identify and activate the hidden potential within your organization

How do you identify future leaders within your organization today – especially with the barriers and challenges that prevent hidden leadership talent from surfacing.

Why wasn’t leadership potential spotted in the first place? Why are highly talented people struggling to overcome certain hurdles?

  • Explore the business implications of missing hidden talent
  • Learn how to identify your hidden talent and change how you think about potential
  • Myth-bust your diversity assumptions - gender, generation, and functional background - that cause a failure to unleash the underdogs
  • Self-audit your business readiness to unleash hidden potential and learn the proven practices to ignite change based on a global database of 20 years and 50,000 leaders

Mathieu Baril, Managing Director, DDI Canada

Annie Framand, Senior Consultant, DDI Canada

2:15 pm

Networking coffee break and book signing with Stéphane Grenier

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After the War: Surviving PTSD and Changing Mental Health Culture

Stéphane Grenier

After serving in Rwanda during the 1994 genocide and civil war, Lieutenant Colonel Stéphane Grenier returned to Canada haunted by his experiences. Facing post-traumatic stress disorder and an archaic establishment, he spent ten years confronting--and changing--the military mental health system from within.

Coining the term “Operational Stress Injury” to allow the military to see mental injury in the same light as a physical wound, Grenier founded the Operational Stress Injury Social Support program that provides help for mentally injured soldiers and veterans.

Since retiring from the military in 2012, his groundbreaking approach has been adopted by civilian society. Through his social enterprise Mental Health Innovations, Grenier delivers his direct “walk the talk” method to improve mental well being in government and business.

Stéphane Grenier, Retired Lieutenant-Colonel, Canadian Forces; Mental Health Innovator, Leader, Speaker and Author of After The War

2:55 pm

Fit Break

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3:00 pm

HRD’s CHRO series keynote presentation

Canada’s most prominent CHROs will reveal their insights on the key trends, innovations, opportunities and challenges shaking up the world of work.

3:15 pm

Panel discussion

Cultivating company culture in a multi-generational workplace: Increasing performance, productivity and purpose within your organisation

Developing a strong and engaged company culture is well known for being the key to increasing performance levels. With workplaces becoming increasingly transformative and multi-generational, it’s essential for HR professionals to adapt their strategies to reflect these changes.

In this session, HR leaders will provide their insights on how to create a strong company culture that fosters the high performance and innovation required to succeed in today’s economy.

  • Adapting company culture to support the differing requirements of multi-generational workplaces
  • Increasing engagement through a purpose-focused culture
  • How do you create a sense of belonging at work?
  • Hyper-personalisation and innovative strategies for engaging employees across generations
  • Leveraging the value of a healthy workplace: Driving measurable productivity improvements by putting wellbeing at the forefront of employee experience

Alana Free, Vice President, People and Culture, GoodLife Fitness Clubs

Christine Song, VP, People & Culture, BioConnect

Gena Restivo, Vice President, Human Resources & Communications, AstraZeneca Canada

4:15 pm

Closing keynote: Creating a culture of innovation within your organization

The opportunities and threats of disruptive innovation can no longer be ignored by HR leaders who need to ensure their organizations can adapt to a transforming business landscape.

Globally recognised for his work as an innovation strategist, Shawn Kanungo will deliver his insights on how organizations can disrupt before they are disrupted, including:

  • Developing innovative, creative thinking within the confines of an organizational structure that does now always support new ideas
  • Facilitating successful experimentation of new technology and business models
  • Essential strategies for building internal culture

Shawn Kanungo, Innovation Strategist;  General Partner of Queen & Rook Capital, Top 40 under 40; Inc. Magazine’s 100 Most Innovative Leadership Speakers in 2018

8:30 am

Morning Workshop: Moving Beyond Performance Management

Performance processes can often have a bad reputation – but when used correctly they’re a powerful tool for enacting change. Yet many organizations focus too much on the results and lose sight of what’s most important: the people.

The good news? We can fix this. We can ditch the one-off, one-way annual evaluations and adopt ongoing, growth-oriented conversations and AI-driven recommendations that spur personal development and ignite performance. New technologies are emerging that transform performance from an evaluative to a performance development for the entire organization. The transformation is underway – helping people to discover, unlock, and fulfil their potential.

Learning objectives:

  • Discover how companies are transforming performance management into performance development
  • Let go of your dependence on annual events to help you determine compensation decisions and move to continuous conversations
  • Gain ideas to transform your managers into coaching leaders armed with meaningful data to motivate their people and teams.

Jarik Conrad, Sr. Director, Human Capital Management (HCM) Innovation for Ultimate Software

9:30 am

Opening Keynote session: Global trends and innovations in diversity & inclusion

There’s constant pressure on today’s leaders to make their organizations more diverse and inclusive. Developing effective initiatives that respond to the challenges is essential to ensure organizations are both supporting cultural, ethnic and gender differences and harnessing the value of diversity of thought.

Join a prominent global D&I leader Rachel Williams as she delivers her insights on the latest D&I trends shaping the future of work.

  • Overview of the latest diversity trends
  • What does it take to be at the forefront of diversity and inclusion?
  • Advocating the value and reframing D&I within your organization
  • Advancing workplace inclusion through developing a culture of belonging
  • Promoting inclusive leadership: challenging bias and nurturing diverse talent
  • Building bold and innovative practices to facilitate a diverse future

Rachel Williams, Global Head of Diversity & Inclusion, StubHub

10:30 am

HRD’s CHRO series keynote presentation

Canada’s most prominent CHROs will reveal their insights on the key trends, innovations, opportunities and challenges shaking up the world of work.

10:45 am

Fit Break

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10:50 am

Networking coffee break

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11:30 am


Beyond Compliance to Culture: HR in the #MeToo Era

Sexual harassment and other toxic workplace behaviours are sadly still a problem. The current approach - policies, compliance training, and after-the-fact investigations - has resulted in no significant reduction in workplace harassment.

HR must move beyond basic legal compliance to a strategy that recognizes the role our organizational culture plays in preventing or perpetuating sexual harassment and related behaviours.

Learn about practical, evidence-based steps to assess your current practices and adopt a more proactive, culture-focused approach to prevent workplace harassment.

Jane Watson, Head of People & Operations,

Data-Driven HR: Using data and analytics to tell a compelling story about people

A prominent analytics leader reveals how to use analytics to drive forward business decisions and strategy, as well as best practices for interpreting data into meaningful insights, how to tell a story by using the data, and how to effectively communicate with senior management by speaking their “numbers” language, including:

  • What is important to measure and what is not?
  • How to harness insights and stories from people data?
  • How to make meaningful business decisions using data and analytics
  • The role of data and analytics in developing and evaluating business and people strategy
  • How can organizations take data to a whole new strategic level?

Travis Windling, HR Analytics Enablement Lead, Manulife

12:15 pm
1:15 pm


Building A Best-In-Class Employee Experience with Benefits

Mike Serbinis – CEO of League, serial entrepreneur and visionary with over $1B of exits – fronts an insightful session on building a best-in-class employee experience with benefits.

Employees have come to expect the same level of personalization, flexibility, and always-on service in the workplace that they have in their everyday lives. This is an opportunity for organizations to differentiate themselves from others and provide employees with experiences reflective of consumer experiences.

Learn about: 

  • Changing market dynamics: the employees of the past, present and future
  • Changing employee expectations
  • Four recommendations for crafting a best-in-class employee experience

Mike Serbinis, Founder and CEO, League

Driving employee engagement through career exploration at your organization

Career and professional development is one of the top three drivers of employee engagement globally. Employees continue to express their expectation for more opportunities for career growth and exploration.

Over the past 17 years, Lisa Bull (Ceridian) has delivered training to hundreds of clients across North America and has designed and developed training programs for a wide variety of corporate, government and not-for-profit organizations. Now you can join Lisa as she reveals an innovative, employee-centric, comprehensive model that features best practices in career exploration skills including training, mentoring, and employee-led conversations. You’ll walk away with great new ideas about transforming career development and boosting employee engagement in your organization.

Lisa Bull, Vice-President, Learning Excellence, Ceridian

2:00 pm

Networking coffee break

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2:40 pm

Fit Break

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2:45 pm

HRD’s CHRO series: Connecting purpose and profit

Canada’s most prominent CHROs will reveal their insights on the key trends, innovations, opportunities and challenges shaking up the world of work.

Norm Sabapathy, Executive Vice President, Cadillac Fairview

3:00 pm

Closing keynote session: What it truly means to be a modern-day leader

A modern-day leader is committed to a collaborative culture, purpose-driven, and remains an open thinker. They know how to deliver value-add solutions in the face of limited resources while always keeping in mind the critical importance of an engaged workforce. And that’s what it’s all about. The more HR accepts it has a responsibility to improve employee engagement, the more it can make a significant difference and impact through the development of modern-day leaders.

In this talk, Dan Pontefract lays out three key facets of the modern-day leadership: culture, purpose and open thinking. When HR begins to build a workforce full of leaders who can demonstrate all three, the entire organization can be transformed. Don’t just wish for a seat at the table; be the table and make a strategic difference to the bottom line and future success of your organization by your active involvement in the re-engineering of leadership itself.

Dan Pontefract , best-selling author of OPEN TO THINK, THE PURPOSE EFFECT & FLAT ARMY; Chief Envisioner at TELUS, Adjunct Professor at the University of Victoria

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