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About Me

Jane Watson Headshot

I’m Jane Watson, an HR professional based in Toronto, Canada and Head of People at where I work with an incredible team to bring the power of conversations and habit change to organizations, all while building a world class virtual workplace. You can find out more about how our team works here.

My HR career has taken me into a variety of industries over the last 15 years, including financial services, technology, the public sector, design, hospitality, non-profit, and food processing..

I have a degree in Anthropology, certification/designations in Human Resources Management and am never not learning.

People who know me well know that I love cheese, deadlifts, and arguing with smart people.

Connect with me

Twitter: @JsarahwatsHR


About Talent Vanguard

van·guard [van-gahrd] noun  1. the forefront in any movement, field, activity, or the like.   2. the leaders of any intellectual or political movement.

I started this blog because my friends and family got tired of listening to me opine about all things people and organization related. And I guess this is the part where I’m supposed to convince you that I know what I’m talking about… The thing is, the more I learn and experience, the more I become aware of how little I (and we, really) know for certain about humans and work. So instead, let me tell you what interests me:

  • Organizations as social systems
  • Evidence based management
  • Culture as an adaptive mechanism
  • The gap between knowing and doing (intention vs action) as a critical constraint on strategy, leadership, and engagement
  • The tension between needing structure/process (to deliver consistency) and needing to be flexible enough to react to unique and complex conditions
  • How organizations and individuals can cope and thrive in the face of complexity and information overload

Saying that work is changing rings a bit hollow; it’s always changing. Yet it’s true that we are grappling with new, exciting, and sometimes scary shifts in the economy, our society, and technology, and that these are having a significant and complicated impact on how we work together. It’s a fascinating time to work in Human Resources.

Some Important Disclaimers:

  • The opinions shared here are my own personal opinions. They don’t always align with the views of my employer or the organizations I am part of.
  • I change my mind regularly when I encounter new information or experiences that cause me to reevaluate my viewpoints. So, sometimes I disagree with past posts I’ve written.
  • The best ideas are those that withstand dissection, rigorous debate, and educated disagreement. Sometimes I argue a point to decide if I agree with it or not. So don’t take things too seriously, and feel free to (respectfully) disagree with me.
  • I don’t promote ideas, sites, people, or books on this blog unless I decide to independently for no personal benefit. Nor do I accept requests to profile services, products, or anything really (although if you want to send me a puppy, or some cheese I may reconsider)


3 Comments Post a comment
  1. Hi Jane – I saw this on LinkedIn front page and thought of you, given your background and interest in anthropology…

    March 15, 2013
  2. Dan #

    And!!! You should have mentioned, without being too specific maybe, that you have lived overseas! Wonderful to connect a bit with your Mom recently. Great hearing of your successes!!!

    August 8, 2013
  3. Jane, I don’t get to all of your posts, but I always enjoy your candid and fresh approach when I do. Of course, it helps that I generally agree with you. Too often discussions about culture fail to consider basic functional and process impediments to people making the contributions they would dearly love to make. I also find value in helping people see when people are wrapping themselves in the culture flag as a way to avoid tough choices or excuse simple bad behavior.

    July 17, 2017

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