2014 = Change

This assignment is about change.  A change in environment.  A change in industry.  A change in perspective.  Change is good and can be a catalyst for growth.  At the half-way point in my PULSE assignment, here are 5 things that have changed for me…

  • My engagement with colleagues and the organization’s mission: At the Canadian Cancer Society, the people they help and serve are at the core of everything they do. It is easy to feel empowered when the impact of your work is so tangible.  Here we are supporting the recent Stand Up 2 Cancer launch, holding our signs for those we are standing up for.  We keep these signs at our desks to remind us of why we are here.


  • My beard: On an extended long weekend, I awoke Monday morning with a keen desire NOT to shave and that led to a week of bearded growth. What was initially regarded as a “cool” scruffy look, appropriate for working in a non-profit downtown Toronto, quickly became unruly and I was referred to as the best dressed hobo in the office.  At the end of the week the beard got voted off two islands, work and home.

(I didn’t take a picture so here is a pic of my Movember stache a couple of years ago)


  • My assignment focus: This has been more of a narrowing down of my project work and I am now well into the meat of the assignment sandwich, feeling valued and part of the team. Among other things, I am performing an evaluation of nationwide marketing services, engaging stakeholders and divisions across the country to inform a strategic direction for the organization – learning a lot! My other PULSE team members (there are 3 of us at CCS) and I have also developed a Ways of Working training plan including meeting effectiveness and cross-functional best practices to be rolled out in the next couple of months.


  • My residence: Miranda and I bought a house and moved in July. There are still boxes lying around and plenty to do as we wait for furniture and I try not to get electrocuted.



  • Miranda’s belly: Miranda is into her 7th month of pregnancy and we are thrilled! And…it’s a boy!  Yes, we found out!  What’s it to ya?  I can’t wait to meet him and change his diapers and wonder why he’s crying and then start crying myself.


So change is definitely afoot.  2014 is turning out to be a transformative year, professionally and personally.  It just goes to show you that when you open up to a new experience or challenge yourself to move beyond your comfort zone and seek new possibilities, you will move and get pregnant.


  1. So much change for you Ryan. It sounds like you are juggling a lot of balls, both personally and professionally. I hope you are embracing the Pulse experience. It truly does change you.

  2. Hi Ryan, I’m a couple of days away from ending my PULSE assignment in Senegal and I take the opportunity to catch up with the blogs from colleagues I met during PULSE orientation in Philadelphia. It was almost a year ago, yet it feels like it was yesterday. It seems that you had a positive experience, I’m so glad you were able to live this experience while juggling with your family life, this was a big commitment. All the best.

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