Office of Advancement
Office of Advancement

ALTogether Now

Vol. 75 – November 23, 2020

exterior photo of Summerhill building


Scott Anderson

The value of inclusion

By Scott Anderson, Executive Director, Communications, Marketing, Events and Donor Relations

There is an Islamic proverb that points out that different flowers make a bouquet. I don’t know a lot about flowers, but I do know that different people make an effective team – people of diverse ages, with different perspectives, different backgrounds, different abilities, and different beliefs.

We are stronger when we are different. There’s lots of evidence that diversity can make communities and organizations more effective, but highly effective organizations don’t just miraculously happen because of diversity.  It takes a culture of inclusion and inclusive leadership to shape diverse teams into effective ones.

This is how the Office of Advancement defines inclusion – one of the five values that guide and sustain our efforts: We work to achieve an inclusive community that values, respects, and celebrates the dignity and worth of every person, where everyone has equal access to opportunities and resources, and can contribute fully to the organization’s success.

So what does it take to build a culture that values and respects every individual as outlined in that definition? It takes inclusive leadership. According to a study published last year in the Harvard Business Review, teams with inclusive leadership are “17% more likely to report that they are high performing, 20% more likely to say they make high-quality decisions, and 29% more likely to report behaving collaboratively. What’s more… a 10% improvement in perceptions of inclusion increases work attendance by almost one day a year per employee, reducing the cost of absenteeism.”

But Shirley Engelmeier, author of Inclusion: The New Competitive Business Advantage, argues that inclusive leadership needs to be accompanied by a willingness to move “from diversity initiatives alone to creating a culture of inclusion and extending learning beyond just senior leaders and implementing an enterprise-wide awareness.”

We’re all building this bouquet together.

Indeed, the Harvard study found that inclusive leaders share a set of traits – traits I would argue are ones we should all cultivate. They are:

"Visible commitment: They articulate authentic commitment to diversity, challenge the status quo, hold others accountable, and make diversity and inclusion a personal priority.

Humility: They are modest about capabilities, admit mistakes, and create the space for others to contribute.

Awareness of bias: They show awareness of personal blind spots as well as flaws in the system and work hard to ensure meritocracy.

Curiosity about others: They demonstrate an open mindset and deep curiosity about others, listen without judgment, and seek with empathy to understand those around them.

Cultural intelligence: They are attentive to others’ cultures and adapt as required.

Effective collaboration: They empower others, pay attention to diversity of thinking and psychological safety, and focus on team cohesion.”

I am sure we could all think of other things to add to this list. I would suggest empathy and kindness as two traits that foster inclusion. What traits do you think will help us create a beautiful bouquet?

Advancement Holiday Extravaganza

As we mentioned last week, our annual Year-End Celebration is on Thursday, Dec. 10 from 11:00 am to noon. Meeting invitations have been sent out. If it’s not in your calendar, please let us know.

We’ve created a Holiday channel in our Advancement Teams group.  It’s your source for up-to-the- minute details on all things festive and fun. In particular, we’re excited about the 5 Days of Holidays, which will include activities like sharing family recipes, games played with colleagues (hold the time if you are interested -- Dec. 4 at 11:00 am), family-friendly crafts, ugly sweater contest – most taking part on the channel.

Sign-up for all of the holly jolly things starts Nov. 30. Next week we’ll have details to share about our Holiday Charity initiative.

Your Advancement Holiday Extravaganza Planning Committee,

Kate Bearse, Gage Benyon, Kymberly Cook, Maura Doyle, Natalie Minnema, Peggy Shanks, and Michelle White

Holiday Fun

Validate our Advancement Values

We are continuing in our Validate phase of Advancement's Values.

Over the next few weeks members of ALT will profile one of our five values in ALTogether Now.  Each newsletter will include a call to action for Advancement staff to share a story or stories about an Advancement employee or group you believe exemplifies the value of the week. At the end of these five weeks, in our next phase – Socialize - we will (with permission) share stories or quotes from the stories submitted.

This week we are focusing on Inclusion. Please submit as many stories or examples as you would like through the survey provided.

National Philanthropy Week

Last week we celebrated the impact of philanthropy all week long in lead up to National Philanthropy Day. If you follow us on social media, you will know that we shared stories of giving and impact throughout the week. This campaign reached nearly 100,000 impressions during this time. Our top performing posts included a beautiful video about Mitchell Hall one year after opening which enjoyed many shares, particularly on LinkedIn. (Fun fact: We filmed this video literally days before COVID-19 hit and everything shut down.) We also saw higher engagement numbers for the features on Rico Garcia and Stephanie Beakbane, both of whom are high-profile volunteers. If you missed the posts and would like to catch up, please visit Stories of Impact on the Alumni Website. If you have a donor, volunteer, or student you would like to see featured as part of our regular Gratituesday content, please contact Jodi Snowdon or Begona Pereira. #QueensThanksU

Timeless tactics for effective emails

EAB has shared an infographic on email tactics. This tool serves as a useful reminder of effective practices, given the increased use of email in our new world of remote work 


Employee Spotlight:

The Employee Spotlight celebrates the arrival of our new staff by profiling responses they share through a fun and informal survey that will help us get to know them better. Be sure to review these profiles and use these fun facts and tidbits to find commonalities, embrace differences, and spark a conversation.

This week we welcome Emma Clarke to Advancement in the position of Relationship Manager, Development and Stewardship, Smith School of Business. Click here to learn more about Emma, her favourite places to travel, and how she has kept busy during the pandemic.

Key to Success graphicJobs with Advancement

We need your recruitment help. Know great talent that would be a good addition to our team? If so, please promote the vacancies below with your networks and let’s find some amazing new team members.

Applications (including a cover letter and resume) must be submitted through CareerQ. For additional information on this posting, please reach out to either Carla, or the hiring manager for the position you are interested in.


Available Position:

Senior Development Officer Faculty of Health Sciences November 30, 2020 09

Levana SocietyDid you know?

Levana Society

This society, named after the Roman goddess of the rising sun, was the official association of women students at Queen's from its founding in 1888 until 1967, when it merged with the Arts and Science Undergraduate Society (ASUS). Levana was founded at a time when women still felt themselves to be on unofficial probation at the university.

Levana members held meetings in the Red Room of Kingston Hall, organized lectures and tea dances, and sponsored debates on topical questions. The Society promoted the general interests of women at Queen's and occasionally entered the political arena, as it did in 1933, for example, when it formed the victorious Arts-Levana-Theology coalition in the Alma Mater Society election to defeat students who wanted to permit fraternities and sororities at the university.

As women gained a more equal footing at the university, the need for an overarching women's society diminished until its members finally decided to merge with ASUS.