So here is yet another example of a simple TB task turning into more than I expected it to be. As part of the outreach portion of my TB duties, Francesco and I had the opportunity to give a short spiel about TB in Barbara Orser’s class in order to raise awareness of this opportunity. These events are fun. For one, it forces you to think about what it is you’re currently doing so that you don’t take your experience for granted. Or it makes you realize you should be taking greater advantage of the current opportunity. Either or, it makes you evaluate. Secondly, it allows you to get a glimpse of how other students see you when you’re not necessarily represented as a peer – that’s definitely interesting. And last, but not least, you get to make a few new contacts in the Ottawa business community. In this case, Barbara Orser.

Here is the information I looked up before I met her, because it’s always wise to know “who” you’re meeting. Barbara Orser is a professor at the University of Ottawa and holds a Deloitte Professorship in the Management of Growth Enterprises. She’s written a few books on small business and finance and has participated in a number of large-scale studies about enterprise growth, gender relevance to enterprise growth, and home based work. And I had it on good terms that she was a nice person.

After meeting her briefly, I realized she is indeed a very nice person. And so after meeting her, I went back and read more of her work. Being a female who graduated from a male dominated mechanical engineering program, I was especially interested in her gender and enterprise growth studies. Her work has some very interesting insights, such as the greater tendency of Canadian females who were not born in Canada to enter into the import/export business. And that “female entrepreneurs often perceive themselves to be more successful than their male counterparts, even with significantly lower reported earnings and profits”, due to their different, non-quantitative, measure of success. Apparently women and men miscommunication extends to the workplace. J


Interesting, sparking thought and debate, it was a pleasure being introduced to Barbara Orser and her work.

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