Life, the Universe, and Everything*
Musings from Linda / LUE-42 Enterprises      Issue #104, October 2019
     Any September is crazy, but this one seemed even more so. Boards were getting busy after a summer break (my favourites are the ones that meet in craft breweries), activities were starting up, my health took a bit of a hit (concussion, actually), and a few things took me on the road. 
     The first was my annual trip to Calgary for the Labour Day Classic. Honestly, these games have not felt very classic in recent years, and the drive home after always feels a bit longer when we lose. I got a few nights in Golden, which always does my soul good. While there some friends and I also attended a scotch tasting moderated by Andrew Ferguson of Kensington Wine Market. As noted before, I'm just learning about scotch but Andrew is the guy you want to learn from. 
     My brother was in town for a week and it was fun to spend time with him and his friends, plus he helped quite a bit with my stuff. Because he hadn't been here in five years, we made heroic efforts to see the rest of the family and, over several days, managed to see most of them. That was pretty great. 
     I was contracted to deliver some governance training in Grand Cayman (Directors Education and Accreditation Program through the Chartered Governance Institute of Canada). I had two cohorts in two days, primarily directors of hedge fund companies. It was fascinating and fun. I was delighted my friend Lynn could come along for the scenery. We took a few more days after my work ended and enjoyed the sun and sand. 
     The only downside of the Cayman contract is that my flight home arrived too late to attend the concert I had been looking forward to for months: Dweezil Zappa performing Frank Zappa's Hot Rats Live and other selections from 1969. Seriously bummed...
     I spent more time this month on my ikagi (diagram from last month). Several friends are similarly focused, so it was fun to touch base and see where each of us is heading. For me, the ikagi work involved a lot of reaching out, even when it wasn't comfortable, and also mending things (garments, relationships, old hurts). 
     I celebrated a friend finding her ikagi with the publishing of her first book. Lessons from Nature by Kathy Roy is a beautiful, contemplative book designed to read out doors. I enjoyed my copy on the beach.
     In September I also read The Casual Vacancy by  JK Rowling. Because it involved a Council, bylaws, and people's unique motivations I couldn't put it down. Here's part of the description: "The novel is set in a suburban West Country town called Pagford and begins with the death of beloved Parish Councillor Barry Fairbrother. Subsequently, a seat on the council is vacant and a conflict ensues before the election for his successor takes place. Factions develop...those running for a place soon find their darkest secrets revealed on the Parish Council online forum, ruining their campaign and leaving the election in turmoil."
     Will I see you at the CSAE national conference in Vancouver in October? On Friday morning (Oct 25) I am doing a Lightening Talk called .30-.30.: Rapid Fire Association Lessons from 30 Years in the Trenches. I hope to see you there!
"Through what seems like destruction, new life is beckoning. The fence has broken open. The boundaries have expanded. You can step beyond where you have been."   Kathy Roy
Question: Is "Diversity" Just a Buzzword?
ANSWER: With respect to boards of directors, NO. It used to be a strong suggestion and now (for some) it is required. 
          Virginia Schweitzer at Fasken, an Ottawa law firm, recently wrote an article that disclosed in January 2020 distributing companies under the Canada Business Corporations Act (CBCA) will be required to implement and disclose diversity policies related to boards of directors and senior management ("executive officers" as defined in National Instrument 51-102). This "comply or explain" approach goes further than Canadian securities law, National Instrument 58-101 Disclosure of Corporate Governance Practices.
           What constitutes "diversity" is described in section 3 of the Employment Equity Act (Canada), namely:
  • Women
  • Aboriginal peoples
  • Persons with disabilities: persons who have a long-term or recurring physical, mental, sensory, psychiatric or learning impairment and who
    • consider themselves to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment, or
    • believe that an employer or a potential employer is likely to consider them to be disadvantaged in employment by reason of that impairment,
and includes persons whose functional limitations owing to their impairment have been accommodated in their current job or workplace;
  • Members of visible minorities: persons, other than Aboriginal peoples, who are non-Caucasian in race or non-white in colour.
          (Sidebar: I recently had a robust discussion with a group about whether the minimum criteria for serving on a board (i.e., over 18, not an undischarged bankrupt, having mental capacity, having no criminal record) would actually withstand a constitutional challenge. I think two, but perhaps all of these criteria, could fall within our lifetime. My $.02). 
          Diversity information addressed under the disclosure requirements speaks to:
  • term limits and board renewal mechanisms;
  • whether there is a written policy targeting the diversity groups (and if not, why not);
  • the objectives of that policy, measures taken to implement, results in achieving the policy, effectiveness of the policy, the level of "representation" (emphasis is mine) in each diversity group; 
  • number and proportion of members of each designated group on the board of directors and in senior management; and
  • target numbers or percentages for members of each of the designated groups and the target date.
          For those impacted by the CBCA, the 2020 proxy season is approaching fast (for you NFP people, count backwards from your AGM) so there is not much time to get this in place for your slate of directors.
          I have said all along that the not-for-profit sector is way ahead on having diverse boards of directors. Often this has not been intentional -- it is a result of who we are, what we do, and the communities we serve. Still, it makes good sense to pay attention to what is happening in the corporate sector. If we keep doing well, by comparison, we may not be regulated on the matter. We already know diverse boards make better decisions. 
           Does your organization have a diversity policy? If not, do have have any practices within your nomination process?

1 (UN)
Older Persons
Random Poetry

Cdn Beer!!!
10 (WHO)
Mental Health
11 (UN)
Girl Child
Spin A Top
White Cane
16 (UN)
World Food
17 (UN)
No Poverty
Choc Cupcake
Eval Your Life
Count Buttons
26 Make A Difference
Black Cat
30 Create A Great Funeral 31 (UN)
World Cities

October is also Family History Month and Canadian Library Month.

October 04

October 09

October 20
A list to help you cope from
  • Take 2 minutes to pause and just breathe. If you find your mind racing, count your breaths.
  • Write out what you're worried about (I call this Embrace Your Stress practice.)
  • Focus on one thing you're grateful for, even during this challenging time, and remember to be very specific (the smaller the better.)
  • Be kind in your self-talk. When you hear yourself being harsh, rephrase what you said as if talking to a friend or a person you care about. 
Shout Out to s ome people who made my life better in September:
Stephanie Baran, Trinda Blackmore, Melany Campos, Chantelle Chevrier Painter, Barb & Ken Croft, Brian Edwards, Andrew Ferguson, Mandy Foster, Butch Fox, Liz Garratt, Joe Howdle, Kim Hunter Lee, Julia Kopala, Lynn MacAskill, Kelly McClung, Sherrill Mcgilvray, David Miriguay, Gerald Osborn, Jack Rana, Mike Smith-Knutsen, Mike Stringer, Dave Sutherland, Greg Swanson, Estelle Tayler, Yvette Tayler, Theresa Tsoukalas, MaryAnne Trann, Babe & Sue Wanamaker, Wood family (Chris, Bobbi, Jenny, Adesh, Aliya, Jill, Peter, Helga, Rob, Ginny...)
"You can make more friends in two months by becoming interested in other people than you can in two years by trying to get other people interested in you."  Dale Carnegie
Links We Like

21st Century AGM (ICSA Thought Leadership White Paper)
21st Century AGM (ICSA Video on use of technology, supports White Paper)
The Bench (5min. film of a random encounter; uplifting)
How Smart Are You (Fun general interest quiz)
6 Famous Outlaws of the Wild West (Always a fan of the Soapy Smith tales)
Climate Change is not Global Warming (And not the same as weather either)
5 Things You Didn't Know About Autopsies  (I seriously didn't know)
Scurvy is Alive and Well (And you gave me grief for including it in my play!)
Wish I'd Said That

 " Your strongest muscle & worst enemy is your mind. Train it well." --  Anonymous

"Yesterday I really wanted tacos. Today, I'm eating tacos. Follow your dreams." -- Unknown (But I've been known to say it)

"Stress, anxiety, and depression are caused when we are living to please others." -- Paulo Coelho


Hey October...I'm ready for you this time. 
 LUE-42 Enterprises

* with fond acknowledge to Douglas Adams and The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy
LUE-42 Enterprises