For the past two decades, Michelle Holliday has inspired with her thought leadership and vision. As a writer, presenter, facilitator and consultant, her work centers around “thrivability” — a set of perspectives, intentions and practices based on a view of organizations and communities as dynamic living systems. To that end, she brings people together and helps them discover ways they can feel more alive, connect more meaningfully with each other, and serve life more powerfully and effectively through their work.
Michelle spent the first part of her career in brand strategy, working internationally for Coca-Cola and H.J. Heinz. The second part of her career focused on employee engagement, consulting for a range of organizations in Washington, DC. Now, she combines both disciplines as founder of Montreal-based Cambium Consulting, accompanying a delightful community of pioneering and purpose-driven clients.
With a Master’s Degree in International Marketing and a Bachelor’s Degree in Russian Studies, Michelle has lived in 19 cities around the world, including Moscow, London, Paris and a small town in Scotland. She now lives in Montreal with her husband and two children.
“There seem to be 6 ingredients in my work: (1) inviting others into (2) the informed (3) intention (4) to craft spaces that support (5) the practice of stewarding (6) life.
(1) Invitation: Inviting (and re-inviting) people to move toward what they’re called to. Only you can understand what you’re ready for, what you’re able to contribute, what brings you alive. Invitation and encouragement: yes. Coercion and shame: no.
(2) Being informed: Finding guidance in models and frameworks, in our own experiences and intuitions, in conversations, in art and poetry, in indigenous languages and perspectives, in nature, in spirituality, in many things. Each of us will have our own ways of integrating the emerging, expanded story of life. Developing a thoughtful personal compass or theory of change seems useful and important.
(3) Intention: Holding the explicit intention to enable thriving for ourselves and for the whole community of life. We’ve lost that scope of intention and, as a result, we’re getting something decidedly less than thriving.
(4) Crafting fertile spaces: Designing and prototyping new structures and systems to hold, nurture and propel us according to our evolving understanding of the conditions necessary for life to thrive. Imagining new ways of being together in community, in organization, in family, in learning. Letting go of and mourning the structures and systems that no longer serve us fully.
(5) The practice of stewardship: Within all of that, embracing the continuous individual and collective practice of assessing our designs and of sensing and serving life’s ongoing transformation, with curiosity and compassion, with reverence and responsibility.
(6) Life: Acknowledging and celebrating the precious gift of aliveness – source of our kinship with all existence. Savoring the experience of it – the joy, the pain and everything in between.”