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These keynotes are intended to encompass topics of interest to local government and school board elected officials and managers. However, they can be adapted to any board-led group such as a professional association, charity, library, or the like.

Who's Driving the Grader

Excerpts from Ian's first book, Who's Driving the Grader and Other Governance Questions, are explored based on the audience's desires. 

Have you ever wondered whether governments need to 'stop doing stupid stuff' or how you can meet people where they are'? These are just two of the over 20 topics that can be explored.

The DNA of Great Leaders

Ian's second book, 'The DNA of Great Leaders' speaks to three types of attributes that got the best leaders to where they are: Personal aptitudes that are inherent in the person; Community leadership that has built the leader a firm foundation; and Governance skills that can be learned. Taken together, there are 25 aptitudes that are present in the best leaders. 

Hear Ian speak to a few of these aptitudes that are most important in your organization.

The Glaring Governance Gap

There is often a gap between where an organization is now and where it could be in its ideal future when it comes to great governance. Explore how organizational constraints on governors and personal constraints on managers can lead to that gap in achieving potential, and understand how to close that gap.

Effective Elected Officials

There are specific attributes that serve elected officials well and others that don’t matter so much. Ian’s forthcoming second book is about the aptitudes of well-functioning mayors. These attributes, values, principles, and actions apply to anyone who holds elected office and equally to those who work with elected officials to serve citizens, businesses, and community organizations.

Great Governance

When Councils get elected, they want to do stuff. So how do they set their sights on identifying their ideal future state and then work towards achieving that? Knowing that circumstances change, Ian will explore how to create goals, set priorities, and then adapt them as the months and years go by.

Conference Workshops

These workshops can be anywhere from a one-hour presentation to a half-day.

Ethics for Elected Officials

It’s probably alright to accept tickets to a sporting event, but not tickets to a Caribbean cruise. Where is the line? Ian speaks to various types of ethical quandaries for elected officials, what they mean, and how to avoid them.

Effective Council - Management Relationships

Author Reading

When push comes to shove, it’s the city manager who gets shoved. Hear from Ian about how fit seems to matter more than actual skill regarding municipal government managers’ relationships with the councils that hire them. What can the manager do to ensure their house is in order - to set both council and their only employee up for success over that council’s term. The best-laid plans don’t always work out, so hear about what comes next.

Over many years of working with elected officials across Canada, Ian has gained some insight into the principles of great governance in action. His book Who's Driving the Grader and Other Governance Questions takes a conversational tone in addressing what works and sometimes what doesn't. Ian will provide excerpts from his book throughout the author's reading and engage in a conversation with those in attendance.

Conference Workshops
Author Reading

"You are a phenomenal presenter, kept us engaged and had great examples. On point!"

Macarena Hormazabal - Town of Leduc

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