Kelly Dobson, Chief Leadership Officer with Leadershift Inc of Manitoba explains how the squares help when trying to explain to others what you are trying to say or determine what strategies to use to solve a problem. Participants were divided into groups and practiced this activity during the Advancing Women In Agriculture Conference in Niagara Falls, Oct. 27 to 29. Vogel photo

Loving the Green! Debra Harrison, President of John Deere Canada shared her journey of starting as a farmer in Quebec, attending McGill University and graduating with an engineering degree to John Deere. Through the many ups and down of her career she has successfully secured the position of President of John Deere Canada. Appreciating the learning opportunity of working with a large company like John Deere, Harrison, engaged the 400 women at the Advancing Women Conference in Niagara Falls.
Vogel photo

Niagara Falls – The four hundred women who attended the Advancing Women in Agriculture conference in Niagara Falls, ON on Oct. 27 to Oct. 29 came away rejuvenated and ready to take on new challenges.  This was the fifth annual conference. 

Kelly Dobson of presented on leadership development.  “We all have a different leadership style” Dobson says, “It’s a matter of being effective”.  Being an effective leader includes being able to have uncomfortable feelings and discussing the with the person or group of people you are working with. 

When working within the farming structure family can always be a challenge.  Many farm families go through a tough time with succession planning.  “The next generation needs to step up and not over” says Dobson and “the current generation needs to step back and not away”.   Being able to discuss opinions and options without a feeling of not being heard is difficult.  Dobson uses a square method.  The participants were divided into groups and one chose a situation they were not comfortable with and wanted to change.  While discussing the situation the participant divided their time in each of the squares; Observations, Thoughts, Wants and Feelings.  Participants, with Dobson’s guidance, quickly realized how in everyday transactions there is confusion between what is a feeling and a thought. 

Dr. Brynn Winegard unleashed the inner superwoman during her presentation.  Dr. Brynn presented six brain science secrets the help improve leadership skills.  A person’s subconscious makes 99% of the decisions, leaving only 1% of decisions to be made consciously.  First impressions are important!  As a person is approaching the mind is already deciding if they are friend or faux.  This does not allow a conscious determination to prevail.  The human brain mirrors the brain of the people you interact with.  Brynn used the comparison you are what you eat, well, that is true with you are who you associate with.  The human brain feeds off others around them so the more time you spend with someone the more you become like them.   Humans will pick up traits or mannerisms of others just because they spend time together.  A little anxiety is good.  In small quantities it keeps the human mind alert and prepared.  Constantly sending feelings of doubt and questioning how well you have preformed a task or followed a discussion can lead you to self doubt.  Dr. Brynn gave better insight into how to use your brain to be stronger and more confident. You can follow Dr Brynn at @DrBrynnWinegard.