SUSAN FLYNN

CORPORATE CAREER
My corporate years as a leader and change agent myself, gave me first-hand experience with the challenges leaders face in keeping people “on strategy and in touch”. Before consulting, I held senior management roles at AT&T and Bell Canada in marketing, strategic planning, customer service, sales and as in-house executive consultant.

I led start-up ventures, launched strategy, managed diverse teams, and oversaw community investment projects. I love my work now because I build on what I learned then.  I saw first-hand what works (and what doesn’t) to create trust, support and results. People tell me they appreciate my ability to keep rigorous focus on the big picture and the business goals, and at the same time, bring awareness of how things might look on the ground. I believe that warmth, diplomacy and a sense of humour are good for relationships and results at all levels.

A CONSCIOUS CAPITALIST
Mid-career, I completed a Masters in Environmental Studies from York University, a path chosen instead of the more predictable business degree because I had “lived” an MBA in my corporate life.
I wanted to understand what it takes to create healthier organizations and in turn how business can contribute to a healthier world. Through the Schulich School of Business I did research  in sustainability frameworks, organization change and stakeholder engagement.

SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
As well as actively supporting many varied causes, I served for fifteen years on several non-profit boards: Children’s Aid Society of Toronto, Children’s Aid Foundation (Invest in Kids) and the North York Women’s Centre, and was a mentor in the Altruvest board development program. I’ve had the opportunity to lead strategy reviews, communication planning and corporate outreach, to design and chair premier fundraising events, and to be instrumental in the introduction of more stringent governance practice.

I’m committed to continuing to give back. Currently I’m a mentor with the Coady International Institute Leadership Development initiative. In 2012, I made a second trip to Kenya where I’ve worked in the slums of Nairobi and in remote villages to learn first-hand about the power of principled leadership, micro-business, and community engagement in the developing world.

CREDENTIALS
I am a certified Sustainability – CSR professional through the European Institute of Environmental Management and Assessment (IEMA). In addition to my Masters, I have a BA in English (the genesis of my love of writing) and have taken management courses at the University of Toronto and Wharton School of Business.

FOCUS ON LEADERSHIP COMMUNICATIONS
My experience past and present continues to ignite and inform my commitment to helping leaders communicate well.