The 2020 Leadership Retreat
By Christina Owczarek
Navigating COVID in the last part of 2020, was not just navigating the obvious social, professional & barriers, but for a lot of people it has been navigating the comorbidities of depression & anxiety caused by financial pressures, isolation, exhaustion from trying not to lose hope, and the sheer extra mental & emotional energy it takes to get just the basic things done in a world full of so many more hurdles than usual.
However, one much needed break in the bleak (literal) mid-winter, was the Advancing Ag Leadership retreat in Banff in early November 2020. This retreat was gorgeously staged at the iconic Rimrock Hotel nestled in the Upper Hot Springs of historical Banff, and saw the 2020-2021 Adv.Ag class meet in one place for the second time, and what we hope won’t be the last. While oddly spaced at 6ft apart at our tables over the course of three days, the distance between each participant grew less and less personally as we opened-up vulnerable conversation and exploration of our individual personality styles, and in turn the way in which we interact with others. We did this through guidance by Linda Wilson of CorQuest leadership development using the DISC model of behavioral and productive conflict styles.
Over the course of two days, we explored the way in which we take in external information & stimulus, the way we process it, how we express ourselves, and how these factors combined creates relationships both in and outside of the workplace. It allowed us a mutual safe place to examine our strengths and also our areas that may require improvements to be facilitate and foster better relationships for greater success.
The weekend brought a group of people together to share & grow as a group striving to make our impact in our businesses & in turn our communities better. I sincerely hope that the world allows us to meet again in such circumstance to share & how this program has shaped & developed us as budding leaders in this very exciting sector.