International Leadership Association Global Conference

Contributor:  Tami France, PHR, Marketing & Communications

Between October 28th and November 3rd, 2013, there were more than 1,000 leadership professionals from around the world gathered together in Montreal, Quebec, Canada. We all gathered at the International Leadership Association Global Conference to network, hear new thinking on leadership, and share perspectives.

Attending the International Leadership Association (ILA) Global Conference titled “Leadership for Local and Global Resilience - the Challenges of a Shifting Planet that took place in Montreal, Quebec was an inspiring way to connect to leadership, research, and practice around the world. It was a means for me to connect to current leadership trends and practices. During the opening keynote Eliane Ubalijoro, the ILA 2013 Chair, welcomed us to experience the conference and allow it to “nourish in each of [us] an invigorated appetite to keep exploring and taking [our] leadership research and practices to new heights of resilience.”

An added layer of engagement at the conference was my role as a presenter/facilitator at the roundtable discussion and my topic was Cross-Cultural Collaboration. The roundtable format was “an informal small group discussion on a topic of common interest” (ILA Conference Guide, p. 18). My co-facilitator and I were asked to submit a short description of the content of our roundtable discussion, which was added to the conference guide as a way to publicize our topic. We described collaboration as a process through which people, groups, and organizations work together to achieve desired results of shared vision, and positive service outcomes, through an interdependent system. We added to this by noting the role of Cross-Cultural Collaboration as being necessary at this time of global interconnectedness. We noted that individuals attending the session would have an opportunity to discuss the necessity for this capacity in leaders and gain practical applications of Cross-Cultural Collaboration. This was an engaging and relevant topic at this conference. While attending a concurrent session I found myself at a table where the other participants and I represented five different countries (Canada, Saudi Arabia, Netherlands, UK, and USA) and different cultures, backgrounds, and ways of thinking about leadership.

The final moments of the conference were brought together by a beautiful closing keynote speech led by Dr. Nancy Adler. I am inspired to attend the International Leadership Association 2014 Global Conference titled “Conscious Leading for Global Change - Emergence of our Collective Realities,” taking place in San Diego, California.