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The Institute 101: An inside look into our learning culture

May 27, 2019

Earlier this month, our Montreal office hosted 31 colleagues from across the AVENIR GLOBAL network for The Institute 101. During three days, participants took part in training sessions taught by peers, focusing on business management and core communications skills.

As the cornerstone of our Firm’s learning culture, The Institute offers cutting-edge development opportunities to our staff by connecting new employees with senior consultants.

Five participants of the 2019 edition agreed to share their thoughts on this unique learning experience: Meredith Adams, Chloe Mills and Amber Ciolfe, from our Toronto office, Alex Abdelwahab, from our Ottawa office, and Kate Steele, from our Halifax office.

What is your most important takeaway from The Institute 101?

Meredith The ability to deconstruct one’s own learnings and be open to rebuilding them with the insights of their peers and surroundings is a critically important skill in our industry.

Chloe The tools and resources to strengthen my client relationships and my connections to colleagues in other offices and departments.

Alex Several of the case studies we went over were similar to real life scenarios that I have experienced. As someone who is new to consulting, I really appreciated learning from others on how they had handled the situation.

Kate We are in a people business and building trust is fundamental in the client/consultant relationship.

The Institute offers cutting-edge development opportunities to our staff by connecting new employees with senior consultants.

How did the experience change your perception of your work as a consultant?

Alex The experience gave me a new drive to do my best every day as a consultant. I have not been working in this industry very long and have been learning on the job since I started. Now that I have attended The Institute 101, I feel much more confident in my ability to do a good job for our clients.

Kate Attending 101 has given me a broader perspective on how we can serve our clients. We are able to draw on expertise from around the globe to provide the best possible solutions for clients.

Amber The Institute 101 reminded me that my role is to be a trusted advisor to my clients. It encouraged me to spend more time investing in the right relationships, to never stop learning about the reality of my clients’ world and to look for opportunities to add value.

Meredith At 101, the passion from both my peers and faculty members was excitingly evident and reminded me that as a consultant, being able to utilize your passion to the fullest is beneficial for both your growth and the client’s.

What did the experience bring you on a personal level?

Alex On a personal level, I left feeling more connected to the team that I work with across Canada and around the world. I feel much more comfortable approaching my colleagues in other offices to work together on assignments.

Amber The Institute 101 was an incredible opportunity for me to speak my mind, which may seem contradictory because we were there to learn from others. Over the course of the weekend, I felt empowered to participate, talk with new people, and ask and answer as many questions as I wanted.

Meredith 101 ignited discussions of successes and failures. As a competitive individual, I am often not eager to chat about failures. However, the environment of 101, and the peers I was surrounded by, reiterated the importance of learning, which often includes tribulations and frustrations.

Chloe It was a great experience to see all of the amazing and talented people across the AVENIR GLOBAL network, all working on such interesting projects and mandates.

How would you summarize your experience at The Institute 101 in one word?

Meredith Transformative.

Alex Inspiring.

Kate Motivating.

Chloe Collaboration.

Amber Grounding.

The 2019 cohort of The Institute 101.

Curious for more? Learn more about our unique culture.

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Written by Stéphanie Auclair

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