President & Founder of Visualiiz Management Consulting Inc.
Jennifer Kikkert is a seasoned facilitator and energizing public speaker with 15 years of experience in process improvement, culture change, and operational excellence. Jen is passionate about helping organizations ‘see’ opportunities for improvement that often go unnoticed. Having spent 12 years working in the public sector, mainly healthcare, Jen has great experience in knowledge industries where the actual processes are hard to see.
In 2014 Jen started working in the private sector, training change leaders, coaching senior management and key leaders, and motivating cross-disciplinary teams to improve their productivity. Jen holds a Process Mastery Certification from the Hammer & Co program in Boston, and is a Lean Six Sigma Master Black Belt.
What are you most proud of professionally? And who or why?
Professionally, I am proud of the fact that because of the work I have done as well as the relationships and trust I had built with those clients, I was able to build a successful consulting business of my own very quickly. My parents always taught me to be kind to everyone because you never know who will come back into your life down the road. That has certainly proved true over the last year and a half. If you are genuine and sincere and have the right intentions, people can feel that.
What’s your vision for Atlantic Canada in 10 years? What’s our biggest opportunity now?
The biggest opportunity for Atlantic Canada right now is to take full advantage of the momentum we have started - focusing on immigration, bringing in new industries and businesses to our region, and improving the way we run our organizations in order to grow them. We are starting to think we can, we are starting to think 'why not here?' and we need to keep that going.
What’s your deepest learning from this past year? How did/will you apply it?
Anyone who knows me knows that I am an unapologetic Pats fan. They prepare, they work hard and they never quit. There have been many times in my career, but especially in the past year, when I have used them as a reminder to myself that "Tough times don't last, tough people do". ~ Julien Edelman, New England Patriots. If you get tired learn to rest, not to quit. I have also learned that you will be much more successful if you are true to yourself, not who others want you to be. You have to believe in yourself and trust your instincts - they are right.
Who’s inspired you, directly or indirectly? How have they inspired you?
Great question. I have worked with some amazing people. One in particular was Eileen MacGibbon at Horizon Health Network. Eileen is a true leader who always trusted my knowledge, abilities, and intentions and she never micro-managed. Anytime I asked Eileen if I could do something that would go against the status quo, she would say 'why not'? In a sector where real transformational change and improvement can seem like an impossible task, she has the courage and vision to know we have to think differently in order to change the system for the better. Eileen inspired me to continue to push the boundaries, to make people uncomfortable with accepting things as they are and I always knew she would support me.
What motivated you to make the choices you’ve made?
"People won’t remember what you said or what you did, but they will never forget how you made them feel." ~ Maya Angelou. We all know the people who make us feel like we matter and who make us happy as well as those who do the opposite. Alot of the choices I’ve made have been based solely on the fact that I want to spend my days doing things that make me happy surrounded by people I enjoy. It’s possible to laugh until your cheeks hurt and get work done at the same time. My idea of a professional is not a suit and seriousness. Fun people can get a lot of great work accomplished.
Mother, wife, runner, half ironman triathlete, management consultant; improvement leader; productivity expert; speaker; facilitator.