August 2011

Editor's letter

Following the leaders

By Angela Hamlyn

Angela Hamlyn
If you want to build a ship, don’t drum up people together to collect wood and don’t assign them tasks and work, but rather teach them to long for the endless immensity of the sea. ~Antoine de Saint-Exupery

Can you really “teach” somebody how to be a leader? I think the answer is yes … sort of. It would appear that leadership is actually more of a trade than an academic pursuit. The leadership apprentice – both knowingly or unknowingly – learns by emulating the skills, ideals and behaviours of those around him or her.

But what of tomorrow’s leaders? With the great “greying” of our industry and the impending exodus of senior staff, where will tomorrow’s leadership apprentices hone their trade? The much-publicized skills shortage will just as surely be felt in the so-called “softer,” though no less critical skills, such as leadership.

Within the context of a world economy that is competing for our talent, identifying, learning from and applauding our leaders has become more critical than ever for the future of the Canadian resource industry.

In this issue’s feature article “Leading by example,” we shine the spotlight on some of the people and organizations that are paying it forward in our industry. The method for selection was admittedly non-scientific and the list is hardly comprehensive; however these are just a few of the names that keep popping up on our editorial radar. Among them you will find award winners and headline-makers involved in various aspects of the mine cycle, from exploration to reclamation. Part of our hope with this piece is that it will inspire you to tell us about other industry leaders – including some of the more unsung heroes. Sharing success stories and illustrating best practices in action is part of how we help CIM achieve its mandate as a community for leading industry expertise.

And speaking about leading industry expertise, be sure to check out an article by our very own CIM president Chuck Edwards, on page 22, adapted from a technical paper presented at CMP in 2011. Chuck’s commitment to the exchange of quality technical information – most clearly illustrated by his shepherding the successful launch of the quarterly peer-reviewed CIM Journal last year – is certainly another example of leadership in action.

Technical expertise will also be front and centre at the upcoming MEMO conference, to be held in Saskatoon from November 6 to 9. If you have not registered yet, be sure to do so today, as it is promising to be a top-notch event and spaces are filling up quickly. The trade show has been sold out since February!

We have given the last word on leadership to somebody who certainly has “walked the talk” throughout his career in his commitment to CIM and our industry. CIM past president Jim Popowich tackles the question “what makes a good leader?” in our Voices from industry.

Angela Hamlyn,
Editor-in-chief
editor@cim.org

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