SYL 2016 Retreat Recap

The 1st ever SYL Personal Branding Retreat was held August 23rd & 24th at Shekinah Retreat Center. 44 young leaders from across the system participated in the day and a half event. Jamal Tekleweld, from the Saskatchewan Cooperative Association, started Day 1 with a high energy presentation. He focused on the 7 Cooperative Principles and helped the attendees to re-connect to their cooperative roots. Jamal inspired the audience to be proud of the things that separate Credit Unions from the banks. “Jamal breathed life and excitement into it and I learned a lot about Co-operatives”


Tara McKeown, from Conexus CU, lead a conversation around ‘Navigating Your Career’. She spoke very openly about her personal career path and provided the group with valuable advice. She stressed the importance of keeping your nose clean and using the 3M rule: If you are not ok with your Mom, your Mentor, or the Media seeing your social media posts or your actions, you should probably think twice about posting it. She also stressed the importance of being yourself and she challenged the group to define what success would mean to each one of us. “Respect the relationship of power; Respect the power of relationships” 

Neil Cooper of Conexus CU presented the third session titled “Career & Succession Planning” that he adapted to include “Personal Development & Living Your Passions”. Neil also shared his personal journey with the group and challenged the attendees to evaluate themselves, re-discover core values, define success and seek real time feedback, in order to continue to grow. He also encouraged the young leaders to “get comfortable being uncomfortable”.

Toward the end of day 1, Jamal lead an activity called Diversity Headbands where observers witnessed the power of labeling/ stereotyping when the participants were forced to interact with a partner, not knowing what ‘label’ they were wearing. Conversations were uncomfortable and it was a reminder to treat each other with equality.

On Day 2, Janet Lee from the Story Co facilitated the Personal Branding Workshop. Attendees worked their way through the “My Big Brave Personal Brand” workbook in order to define a tagline. A single statement that would encompass the highest and most unique value each individual has to offer. A variety of activities accompanied the workbook. Each attendee completed a Fascinate Assessment prior to attending, and received a report which outlined their ‘Fascination Advantages’ and personalized ‘Archetype’. Solutions to system challenges were discussed in breakout sessions and an activity took place where each attendee received one word descriptions of how they are seen by their peers. The self-evaluation accompanied by the activities and peer involvement led each attendee to discovering the value they have to offer their organization and other aspects of their life.

Thank you to all of the Retreat Sponsors!

Concentra Financial

Calidon Equipment Leasing
Credit Union Deposit Guarantee Corporation
Olive Waller Zinkhan & Waller LLP


Thank you also to our door prize donors: First Canadian Title, National Young Leaders Committee, Prairie Sun Brewery, Genworth, Golden Opportunities, Saskatchewan Roughriders, Prairie Proud, CCUA, Crossroads CU and SaskCentral

SYL 2017 Funding The SYL Committee has prepared the 2017 Business Plan and a request for funding was submitted to all the Credit Unions in July, with a request for response by November 15th. We have received responses and valuable comments from several CU’s already! Thank you for your continued support!

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