Described by her peers as an articulate business consultant, Sue Perron possesses a talent for empowering teams to perform top-quality work. In her role as chief executive officer at the Intersol Group, Ltd., a privately held facilitation and training company, she is responsible for planning, executing and managing all aspects of Intersol’s operations. The company’s goal is to provide professional facilitation and training services to organizations, businesses, teams and individuals.
Based out of Ottawa, Ontario, Intersol Group’s vision is to make professional facilitation skills, services, tools and techniques accessible to all Canadians. They help companies hold important meetings and conferences while professionally managing group dynamics and stakeholder interests. When it comes to facilitation, there are a series of tools and strategic processes required to successfully achieve the objectives of a discussion, the outcomes of a meeting or the deliverables of a project. Simply put, Intersol specializes in applying those tools and processes. Intersol offers training to their clients on how to incorporate these processes into their plans to increase success.
The Intersol team is comprised of professional facilitators who are certified by the International Association of Facilitators. Together, they strive to help everyone from business owners, government agencies, and individuals, to achieve maximum stakeholder engagement and efficiency when working on a project. For example, when departments or teams are required to merge, they may be expected to carry out new initiatives quickly despite most of the employees having never worked together. There will often be a group of people with diverse perspectives forced to work together on a task. Intersol strategically works with them to enhance collaboration and engagement in order to achieve their strategies and missions without wasting time or money.
Intersol has been in business for over 30 years and, according to Sue, is considered a local success story. However, all her predecessors have been males with more seasoned business backgrounds while women remain underrepresented in the consulting world. In recent years, management faced the decision of whether to carry the business forward and if so, how? They decided that the legacy should live on for a new generation, and as a result, there was a change in leadership. Sue, a younger female with a background in healthcare, became the company’s new CEO and has received substantial support from the organization. “People usually go with what they know, the company is very grass roots but the change was so well received that I have been given a great deal of encouragement on its rejuvenation,” says Sue, who’s prior work experience equipped her to bring in the soft skills that the business world is sometimes lacking.
Since becoming CEO, Sue has been rebuilding the business and expanding its’ horizons. Her focus is on assuring the company and office operations run smoothly and efficiently to maximize organizational growth and sustainability. More recently, Sue has been a driving force behind Intersol’s transformation, bringing more diversity, stronger company values and workplace flexibility to the table. Not to mention leading the company through this transformation in the middle of a pandemic.
Intersol has since moved away from its original and standard consulting model. Consequently, they needed to re-visit an employee model which, according to Sue, was important from both a human and a business aspect. “We didn’t want consultants revolving,” she explains, “We wanted them evolving, that is offering employee development and the ability to focus on grooming people and teaching them all the right skills that will make them great at what they do.”
Today, Sue holds numerous responsibilities and believes in taking a hands-on approach in every role she fulfills. In order to be personally involved in the action, she speaks to her team on a regular basis. Sue believes it is essential to maintain proper communication in order look after her team’s well-being as well as their personal growth. Dedicated to building an empowering internal culture, she strives to ensure employees experience continuous professional development while also effectively creating an impact by keeping engagement optimized and the company growing. In fact, Sue adheres to the adage: “Don’t adapt to the room, influence it.” As the leader of a professional facilitation firm, she knows it is her job to leverage the dynamic of the people in the room to create a positive and meaningful learning experience for all.
Chief Executive Officer
Intersol Group, Ltd.
205 Catherine Street, Suite 300
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K2P 1C3
Download the Top 100 Canadian Professionals magazine and check out Sue's feature on page 97.