Message from the President & CEO
When the Leader's Message Becomes Noise...

“Through mobile phones,  online entertainment services , the Internet, electronic mail, television, radio, newspapers, books, social media etc. people receive … about 105,000 words or 23 words per second in half a day (12 hours) (during awake hours).

Although people cannot really read these 105,000 words each day, this is the real number estimated to be reaching the human eyes and ears every day. After adding pictures, videos, games, etc., we reach the volume of  34 Gigabytes of information per (waking) day on average .”

Source: Study, conducted by researchers at the University of California-San Diego, under Roger Bohn, a professor of management at the School since 1992;

That’s enough information to overload a laptop in a week. Imagine what it is doing to our brains. 

Overstimulation of the brain can lead to an inability to differentiate between good information vs garbage information; good news vs fake news, resulting in decreased ability to think critically and problem-solve effectively. 

Our brains absorb and process what they can; the rest becomes noise. The risk to leaders is that your message becomes noise. Your message that may be critical to your organization’s success never gets processed. Or it just gets missed.

Information overload is not a new problem for leaders and their employees. It can result in frustration, poor customer service and lost revenue.

Imagine this situation.

You work in retail. You have been advised by your supplier, that a popular product you sell is defective and needs to be pulled off the shelf. You send an email to your stores. It gets buried with the rest of the 34 gigabytes of data. The product continues to be sold, and it just happens to be Christmas! Imagine the mood of your customers when they arrive to return their gifts on Boxing Day only to learn you don’t take returns on Boxing Day?    

Or maybe you work for a municipality and the tax bills go out incorrectly because, once again, a message was missed that identified the computer glitch.  

Information overload can and does result in frustration, poor customer service and lost revenue. So what, as leaders, can we do about it?  

I have selected a few solutions from a list I found on . Their sources include The Huffington Post and The Guardian. My thoughts are in italics.

  1. Filter the information Read and listen only to the information you consider useful for today or if it enriches your knowledge. Otherwise, ignore irrelevant information like news, gossips, talk-shows, etc. Leaders: Help your people set up Google Alerts and Email preferences so they can control what is coming into their inboxes. Have a policy prohibiting the use of company computers for personal subscriptions including videos and social media. Use time management tools like Covey’s Quadrants to determine what tasks are most important, and Outlook to schedule time for those tasks. E.g. Reading customer’s press releases.
  2. Select the sources It is always great to hear different opinions, but more does not mean better or truer. Select only the reliable sources and stick to them. Leaders: Discuss what qualifies a source as a reliable source for your business with your people. What industry publications are relevant?
  3. Set limits Is it really necessary to read the news every morning or update your posts daily on Facebook? Set some time limits and do not spend more than 10 minutes a day checking your social media or the gossip about your favorite celebrities. Leaders: If Social Media is a part of their job, have them schedule 10 – 15 minute time slots a couple of times throughout the day to respond to relevant tweets, posts, etc.
  4. Prioritize your activities Some activities are more important than others. Do not overload your schedule with plenty of activities that require your maximum attention. First, finish the most important one and if time allows, do the others. Leaders: Invest in time management training (shameless plug – we have a course coming up in Hamilton, January 29 – Time Management Mastery) This didn’t start out as a plug – honest! Just too good an opportunity to pass up.

I hope you find value in what I have presented here and it is not simply just adding more noise to your Inbox! 

Audie McCarthy
President & CEO
What You Tell Us. Your Testimonial Stands Out!
The Mohawk Future Ready Leadership program provided me with an abundance of leadership tools, tactics and techniques that I was able to apply immediately in my career, even before the program was over! The relationship built with my team-mates throughout the program was invaluable, as I learned to work with many different working styles as we pursued one collective goal for our project – that’s what being a people leader is all about.

Scott J. Virgin, BA, EPt, CPP, Operations Coordinator - Arenas, Parks & Recreation, City of Burlington
It's not if, but when, each of us will have to deal with a cyber incident.

Dianne Jones , BDO for North of Toronto, has scheduled a Cyber Security: You're Hacked. Now What? for the Barrie area on March 4, 2020.

This training helps you develop an Incident Response Plan to help your organization become resilient to an attack. Our Cyber Security team will also expose you to open-source, affordable cyber security tools as well as the latest technology in cyber protection to accommodate any budget.

More info HERE .
Lucas Robinson , responsible for Administration, Business Analysis + Reporting at MCE will continue in his role on a part time basis while assuming a second part time position at Mohawk College.

Lucas will support Tracy Dallaire, Senior Director Digital Integration Academic where he can continue to use his business analysis and research skills.
Carrie Deon, Human Resource Generalist, has moved on from her role at MCE.

Carrie began her role at MCE as an intern and after a year, accepted a role created specifically to nurture her interest in a career in Human Resources.

Not only has Carrie thrived in the role of Human Resource management, she has also spent many hours networking and volunteering on behalf of MCE, contributing to a healthy image of MCE in our communities.
Carrie will continue to be a contributor to the HR corner you see below as she settles into her new endeavors.
Thank you Carrie!
HR Corner:
2020 - The Year of Organizational Success!
Here is hoping that you had a wonderful and safe holiday season. New Year’s is about reflecting on the choices and situations that happened last year and determining how to move forward and do better next year. How, as an organization, can we assess where we are at and what can we do better?

Let’s look at 2020 as being the year of success. Here are three areas to focus on if you are looking to excel across the board; improving workplace culture, ensuring the recruitment process brings epic results and having a supportive goal oriented performance management process. 

  1. Always focus on your organizational workplace culture. It improves productivity and contributes to successful recruitment and retention. Look for areas where you can contribute to employee engagement. Encourage open communication, be inspirational, support employee goals, motivate team work and offer recognition. A simple thank you goes a long way.
  2. A solid recruitment process is your brand. It is who you are as a company. Ask questions that address competencies and secure a great fit; the person you hire will have an impact on your organizational culture. Making the recruitment process completely comfortable for everyone brings out the best in the applicant and, even if they aren’t hired, they will leave with a positive impression.
  3. Last but not least, look at establishing a coaching and goal oriented performance management process. I don’t have to mention how many employees over the decades have commented that the annual PM process is grilling. Performance management is changing. With the rapid pace of the world we are in what happened 10 months ago may not matter anymore. Look to the future and strengthen your employees’ skills through coaching, training and mentoring.

These are just suggestions that have worked for MCE. What you choose to do needs to be right for your organization, aligned with your values and management process. I encourage you to try new things for 2020. It just might be your best year yet.  
Carrie Deon
Human Resources Generalist & Contributor to the MCE Newslettter
Celebrating Our Trainers:
Mickey Walker
Mickey Walker specializes in Organization Change, Strategic Alignment, Leadership Development and Coaching.

Mickey has shared her extensive background in Organizational Change through leadership consultation with many international companies both private and public. A strong systems thinker with a wealth of experience in facilitating experiential learning, combined with passion and integrity, allow Mickey to successfully work at all levels of organizations from the C-Suite to front line.

Mickey holds a Masters in Leadership from the University of Guelph and a previous part-time lecturer position with McMaster University, Clinical Behavioural Sciences. Mickey has been busy with launching the Future Ready Leadership Essentials program for the new GridSmart cohort.
Courses of the Month:
What's New for 2020: Emotional Intelligence, Inclusive Leadership, Paper Planes Inc., & Turnaround Interview™
2020 is the year of personal and organizational management. How you can improve your Emotional Intelligence and become a more Inclusive Leader? Paper Planes Inc. is a great course that brings people together in an exciting simulation of teamwork. Turnaround Interview works to resolve minor but reoccurring problem behaviours in an effective, tactical way. See the program summaries below.

Emotional Intelligence
A course for all levels of Leadership from Mohawk College Enterprise

80% of the employee’s success comes from their Emotional Intelligence (Saini 2018)

The “Emotional Intelligence” training course offered by Mohawk College Enterprise utilizes brain-based research to explore Emotional Intelligence and its implications. Participants will evaluate their current emotions and feelings and their impact on their personal and professional lives.

They will apply proven neuroscience perspectives, such as neuroplasticity and mirror neurons to improve their emotional competencies and further excel in their career.

A one-day course. Follow this LINK for more.

Inclusive Leadership
This course helps leaders understand, encourage and embrace diversity and inclusion amongst their team. Participants will learn the impact of understanding diversity, including how being an inclusive leader will bring cohesiveness in today’s workplace and amongst workplace teams.

When you complete this course, you'll be able to recognize the different types of diversity in your team and workplace and articulate the characteristics and qualities of being an inclusive leader.

A one-day course. Follow this LINK for more.

Paper Planes Inc.
A simulation for the Emerging & Experienced Leader from Multi-Health Systems Inc. (MHS), delivered by Mohawk College Enterprise

Paper Planes, Inc.® is a business simulation that focuses on teamwork, collaboration, organizational effectiveness, breaking down silos, engagement, and customer service.

This award-winning change management simulation allows groups of employees to learn the value of redesigning how they work, internalize those insights and bring them back to their jobs while also providing insights on how an organization or team can prepare for changes within their organization.

A six-hour course. Follow this LINK for more.

Turnaround Interview
Turnaround Interview™ is a licensed program by Montana Consulting Group, delivered by MCE.

Turnaround Interview™ is an invitation to personal responsibility that teaches HR professionals, managers, and supervisors, the secret techniques for getting employees to break bad workplace habits without using discipline. 

A two-day course. Follow this LINK for more info .
For more information about our programs, contact:
Lorraine MacDonald
Mohawk College Enterprise | 905-575-2534 | |