After a very rewarding 41-year career with the Government of Alberta (Alberta Environment) I will be handing in my swipe card and exiting the building for the last time on February 17th, 2023.
I am retiring so that I am able to completely focus my attention on coaching / facilitating and writing full time. I have enjoyed the many hours that I have put into my coaching / facilitation and writing, but it is time to make the move and devote all my attention to my passion projects. I love writing and currently have three fiction and one non-fiction books on the go. Many more waiting to be told! 🙂
I have been blessed throughout my career to have actually enjoyed my work and the people I worked with. In my 40 plus years I have seen many people come and go; some I still consider to be my true friends!
The Department of Environment is a relatively young ministry, it was created in 1971. I have been blessed to have served under seventeen of twenty Ministers since its inception I started my career in Edmonton as a Drafting aide and ended my career in Calgary as a Water Modelling Technologist.
Throughout my career, I worked extremely hard to keep my coaching and writing separate from my daily Government work so that no one could ever accuse me of doing non-government work during work hours! Plus most days I was way too busy to do that, even if I wanted to!
Early on in my career, I realized I hated meetings, which meant that traditional leadership roles were off the table for me! Yes, I hate meetings that much. So I chose to lead by:
- Supporting and advocating that the workplace was a great place to be, and work at. I worked hard at ensuring a positive, safe work environment where ever I was and what ever I was doing.
- Modelling that you didn’t always need permission first! Sometimes, you just needed to get a job done, keep people in the loop and then, if needed, ask for permission afterwards.
Eg. I recently secured two years of C# programming support for a program that was DESPERATELY needed in my department. It was the right thing to do for the many people involved, so using my pure charm, I achieved updating from another Department for no cost to my Department.
I will miss the people I worked with and I believe they’ll miss me. But after numerous retirements and Departmental downsizing exercises, I know from experience that in a couple of months after I am gone people will have figured out how to get the job done without me and I will only be a memory in peoples hearts and minds.
I know at the end of my career I will have made a positive difference in many peoples lives, which is really all that I can hope for. One of our core basic needs is to know that we have made a difference.
Especially considering my personal life mission of creating a world of heart based connections while living and teaching the Shin Dao.
L. Neil Thrussell
PS. I’ll write more on what’s does my new life look like later. Off to enjoy the sun!