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Being One - CONNECT's Leadership Trio is Determined to Strengthen Company Unity

CONNECT's leadership trio is stepping up to the challenge of further unifying CONNECT and steering it down the path of growth.

Photo: Karen Tims, Janette Jackman and Jill Koppang (left to right) see a bright future for CONNECT.

Karen Tims, Janette Jackman and Jill Koppang bring their own strengths, strategies and styles to the task of "Being One" and all three are up for the challenge. Karen, who has been focused on leading Lake Country since it opened, is evolving her scope to a more global leadership role. She aims to work with Janette's and Jill's strengths to drive the company forward to, ultimately, make more lives better. "I have started to do some re-jigging in Lake Country to allow myself time to step away from the day-to-day obligations that take up my time so I can change my focus and see the big picture," says Karen.

Play Coach Mark Fleming has stepped up to help Karen with responsibilities like streamlining move-ins and move-outs and optimizing meeting time. She will work between Langley and Lake Country to facilitate culture unity, support the teams at each location and work towards the continued creation of one distinct, unified CONNECT. She will participate in the evolving broader vision for CONNECT.

Janette, who has been the Leader in Langley and celebrates her 17th anniversary with CONNECT in July, is used to multitasking between scheduling, overseeing reporting, contracts, managing long-term residents and day-to-day operations in Langley. Her role is transforming to focus more on CONNECT's HR, staff recognition, health and wellness and administration. "I think the three of us uniting – Karen, Jill and I – will cause a snowball effect so everything CONNECT starts to come together. Our goal with CONNECT is to centralize and streamline everything so both locations, and future locations, run as one."

Janette says she would love to see some sort of chat room started so employees can communicate with each other no matter which location they work from. She would love to see more events where staff and residents from both locations can get together. "I would like to start to bring staff with me when I visit Lake Country, and even take residents with me. I want to see more blending of the two locations and I'm very excited about it being part of the change. Jill is expanding her role to focus more on education, staff development and communication. "I'm very excited about some of the changes at CONNECT, particularly with Karen and Janette and myself forming more of a unified leadership team. " Jill says her new focus will contribute to CONNECT's potential for success and growth because the health of a business really comes down to the quality and ability of your staff and the quality of your communication. "I have a vision of CONNECT where communication is the umbrella under which everything else falls. Coaching, conflict management, competencies. So no matter what topic you are addressing or who you are talking to in the organization, the language and culture and feel will be the same. The CONNECT culture will be infused in everything we do."

She has been at CONNECT for almost five years and has filled a variety of roles in that time. "I was initially brought to CONNECT to support lots of different roles across both sites and to identify issues or deficits and figure out the appropriate resources to solve the problem," she says.

Jill is responsible for CONNECT's reporting every three months or so and is the Lead Coach for transitional residents in Langley. Her challenge is to keep up with the move-ins and move-outs. Also on her list of responsibilities is to lead accreditation, which consumed much of 2012 for her. "That has been a huge undertaking. We had to standardize everything we otherwise just did intuitively. Even now, Accreditation Canada is in touch with me every month or so with a change to standards that we have to react to and make changes of our own."