Indigenous Workways: Situating Work, Lived Experiences, Relational Conversations, Leadership Style Preferences, and Alumni Engagement

This presentation will address Indigenous perspectives on the meaning of work, work identity, well-being and satisfaction at work, leadership, and research methodologies. Reviews of literature by Indigenous and non-Indigenous authors, conversations with employees, and storytelling methods will portray the current landscape for practitioners who are working with Indigenous populations in an organizational setting. It will also address the Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s recommendations for meaningful consultation, relationship building, and equitable access to jobs, training, and education for Indigenous populations in Canada (Calls 7, 11 &92) (TRC, 2015). This work is an extension of the 2016 Cando presentation Promoting Aboriginal youth employment, work engagement, and career advancement that was delivered at the conference in Whitehorse, Yukon.

Presented by: Wendi L. Adair, Darci Belmore, Anika Sehgal, Kelsey Hewitt & Lori Campbell, University of Waterloo; Catherine T. Kwantes, University of Windsor; and Twiladawn Stonefish, University of Windsor

Wendi L. Adair and Catherine T. Kwantes are Industrial/Organizational (IO) Psychologists whose previous collaborations include a successful SSHRC grant to develop and host a conference in 2016 that brought together approximately 100 academics, Indigenous employees, and organizations with Indigenous employees to discuss Indigenous employee experiences in Canada. They hosted a Canadian Psychological Association roundtable discussion (2015), and co-authored a Cando conference presentation (2016), and two Journal of Aboriginal Economic Development articles (2017) while co-supervising a team of students from both UW and Windsor.

Darci Belmore is an Anishinaabe woman from Sioux Lookout, Ontario who recently graduated from University of Waterloo and is pursuing a graduate degree in Speech Pathology.

Lori Campbell is 2-Spirit nēhiyaw āpihtākosisāniskwew with relatives in the Treaty 6 territory of northern Saskatchewan. As Director of the Waterloo Aboriginal Education Centre, Lori oversees the centre, ensuring services provided meet the physical, mental, emotional, and spiritual needs of Indigenous students. She leads strategy, tactical decision-making, and implementation of Indigenous initiatives. In addition, she is accountable for creating effective interactions with Indigenous organizations, communities, and government.

Kelsey Hewitt is an Anishinaabe woman from Kitchener, Ontario with maternal roots in Lac Seul First Nation. Kelsey is studying Geography and Environmental Management at the University of Waterloo and is pursuing research in First Nations and the Environment.

Anika Sehgal is a Canadian student from Calgary, Alberta and is currently completing her Master’s degree in Organizational Psychology at University of Waterloo.

Twiladawn Stonefish is a Canadian doctoral student in Applied Social Psychology at the University of Windsor with family ties to the Moravian of the Thames Delaware Nation.