Here I am posing in front of the 20′ inuksuk found in the ever so beautiful Kuujuaq, Nunavik (northern Quebec), where I spent an exciting week (Feb 16-22) as one half of a team facilitating two inter-cultural workshops for senior management of the Kativik Regional Government. My partner for the week was Eva Papigatuk, originally from Salluit, but now living in southern Quebec.
Development of the workshops began in 2009 and were initially sparked by local Inuit residents asking for “something to understand visitors better”. The project was headed up by Virginie Chadenet, and designed to give participants the opportunity to develop a better understanding of how all cultures have a “normal”, and to explore what to do when “the Other normal” is in conflict with our own.
The 1.5-2 day workshop has grown over the years and continues to evolve with each delivery based on feedback provided by the participants. The workshop has also branched out from its tourism roots to be customized for other niche groups working in cross-cultural environments in northern Canada – such as the police service, healthcare, construction workers, and new government staff.
I have been on the periphery of this project over the years, impressed by its evolution, and I was so excited to finally have the opportunity to be more involved on the delivery end of things. In a world where geography is no longer isolating, I believe developing inter-cultural competency in the workplace is almost becoming a pre-requisite for success as a global citizen.
As for the magazine? I joined Toastmasters International a few months ago, and this was my lame attempt to get my mug-shot into their magazine, where they publish selfies from Toastmasters around the world. Wish me luck!