Sue Johnston helps people talk so others listen, listen so others talk and change the world, one conversation at a time. As a coach and trainer, her focus is on interpersonal communication. She considers conversation the most powerful business tool we will ever have. Happiest when she’s helping people explain their ideas so others understand, she works in three related areas:
- Helping team members and leaders develop conscious communication practices that improve their work and their workplaces
- Helping people in organizations learn and use professional coaching and facilitation skills to build effective, collaborative teams and make good decisions
- Introducing new “Agile” work practices, designed to help organizations cope with today’s turbulent, customer-driven marketplace and master continuous change
She began her communication career as a clerk at CBC’s “The National,” learning about journalism (and how big organizations work) on the job. She was a reporter at CBC Calgary, The Edmonton Journal and the London Free Press. A chance conversation introduced her to corporate communication and she joined TD Bank, first, as editor of its employee magazine, later as a trainer.
Bank of Montreal recruited her as an employee communication specialist, where, as a senior manager, she managed communication for organizational transformation initiatives and technology implementations. A family move took her to Bermuda, where she worked with nonprofit organizations and ad agencies. While living there, she earned an MBA in Communication Management from Royal Roads University, in Victoria, B.C.
After graduation, in 2003, Sue established It’s Understood Communication, to work with individuals and teams to improve communication and collaboration. Now based in Waterloo, Ontario, she trains technology leaders and professionals in the skills of coaching and facilitation, through in person and distance workshops.
Sue’s traditional education is augmented by studies in emotional intelligence, positive psychology, project management and coaching, all of which reinforced her interest in workplace conversations. She is the author of Talk to Me: Workplace Conversations That Work, and a frequent speaker at conferences. While she has many certifications, Sue knows that what really matters is the reaction from the people she works with. “Sue is the coach you want to learn from!”