Heather Thomson, WIL Alberta and Owner of Bold and Brave Coaching
Today, we have the great pleasure of introducing you to Heather Thomson, our Alberta Chapter Co-Chair of Women in Leadership Foundation and Owner of Bold and Brave Coaching.
What are you most passionate about?
I am passionate about leadership and leadership development. As an educational leader with 29 years experience, I have had the opportunity to support and develop many leaders within my school community.Whether it is through formal or informal mentoring relationships, coaching or collaborating with other women leaders, I love to help others rise around me. As a strong believer in life long learning, I am passionate about staying current with leadership practices so that I can adapt to the every changing world of work and the role of leader.
Who is your greatest role model?
My greatest role models have been my parents.They are both extremely hard working, dedicated to giving back to their community and have been great parents and grandparents!They have instilled in me the importance of living life to the fullest and following my dreams.They have always encouraged me to believe in myself, set goals and to focus on living a life that is truly aligned with my core values and beliefs. My mom is battling Multiple Sclerosis and she amazes me every day with her strength, perseverance and her ability to stay positive even when I know how hard it is for her.
What is your greatest accomplishment in your career trajectory?
My greatest accomplishment in my career trajectory has been my ability to continue to grow and stretch myself as a leader and to not stay comfortable with the status quo.After many successful years as an educational leader, I went back to school to pursue additional training in leadership coaching and received my Graduate Executive Coaching Certificate from Royal Roads as well as my ACC designation from the International Coaching Federation. One of the many life lessons that I have learned is that fear can hold us back from moving forward and by recognizing and conquering my fears I was able to shift and stretch myself as a leader so that I could serve and support my teams more effectively.
What advice would you give to women who are building their careers?
The advice I would give women who are building their career is:
Do work that you truly love.
Explore your core values and how these values align with the work you do.
Set personal and professional goals for yourself that promote continuous growth.
Don't be afraid to invest in yourself.
Surround yourself with like-minded individuals where you can support each other.
Build strong connections with others.
What do you think is the biggest challenge for the generation of women behind you?
I think the next generation of women coming up have so many exciting opportunities that will be available to them. As women, we can face additional challenges but by being clear as to what your personal and professional goals are will help you stay true to what you want. Being clear with your goals will allow you to focus on the things that matter most and that are important to you.Sometimes we can get in our own way of success or others create roadblocks that hinder our success and we need to learn to be able to shift and pivot. Failure is inevitable and it is during times that I failed that I had the greatest growth.
Heather Thomon, along with WIL Alberta Chapter Co-Chair Keri Schwebius and Doug Forsdick have co-authored a book about leadership; "Mind the Gap: Navigating Your Leadership Journey" because they wanted to help people become confident, effective leaders. Read the full blog and learn how you can purchase a copy HERE.
In addition, Heather is on the Executive for the Board of Directors - The Bridge which is a center for youth in Fort Saskatchewan
Thank you, Heather. It was great to be able to share more about all the amazing work you do. Thank you for all that you do to help create positive change in the future of women’s leadership.