The Benefits of Change Management Training with The Laurel Centre’s Heather Leeman

January 14, 2021

Last year we reflected a lot on change and the benefits of APMG’s change management training – you can read our past blog posts, here and here.

After running our first public offering this past October, we were curious to see if folks were as excited as we are about the opportunity to become a certified practitioner right here in Winnipeg.   Check out what Heather Leeman, Executive Director of The Laurel Centre had to say!


Why did you want to add Change Management certification to your resume?

I originally was looking into change management because we were in the midst of a large organizational development project that ultimately would result in significant structural and programming changes within [The Laurel Centre]. 

I anticipated some resistance to change as the organization had been doing things the same way for many years and I wanted to make sure staff had an opportunity to actively influence the process.  I, initially, was more interested in gaining some knowledge and skills to help the organization and staff move through this time in a good way.  Then COVID hit and the need to learn more on how to navigate change within an organization became even more crucial.

Although a secondary motivation, I liked that the learning opportunity was coupled with the possibility of becoming a practitioner.  Even though I don’t anticipate applying for or acting as a Change Manager, this is a welcome addition to my resume.  I believe it makes me a more desirable candidate for future Executive Director roles.  

After taking this course, I truly believe that change management should be a core competency for leaders of non-profit organizations in the social sector.  


How does change management training help you as Executive Director of The Laurel Centre?

It has already helped by increasing my knowledge and understanding, but I feel more benefits are to come as I am more mindful and purposeful in using the knowledge gained.  I learned so much about the complexity of change at both an individual and organizational level and gained many tools to help the teams navigate through existing and future change.  It has normalized some of the experiences and responses so far and helped me reflect on why things have gone well or not well.  I was validated for some things I have done well (communication, engaging stakeholders) but also was able to reflect on things I have not done well (honouring of the past and allowing staff to grieve the losses) and how I would do them differently. 

I now have a toolbox to draw from as we go through a change period.    In an ideal world, I would be able to hire someone to help manage the change but we don’t have the resources for that.  At the very least, having a better understanding of individual responses to change and best practices in working through change, will ensure the best possible outcome for the organization.

Some of the components I appreciated the most – learning how organizational culture develops and how to identify it; individual learning styles; change models/processes; types of communication and engagement needed at various stages of change.


Why should someone take Change Management certification?

Because change is inevitable and necessary.  It is all around us and everyone (no matter what our role is in an organization) can benefit from learning more around this.  This training provided a good balance of self/organizational reflection, knowledge transfer, and skill development.  I found taking the training with colleagues in similar organizations with similar challenges to be very helpful.  The examples shared and worked through contributed to a deeper understanding.


Thanks for your insights, Heather!

Our next offering runs…

  • February 22 – 26, 2021 [in person]

Check out our website for more details and to register!


Written By


Communications and Product Development Lead