“It’s a great opportunity to explore your ambitions, your strengths, and your areas that need development”
Jordan Cripps is the Manager of Development with the Disability Foundation and their affiliated societies. Although he joined the Disability Foundation as a Development and Communications Officer through Neil Squire’s Working Together program, Jordan originally connected with the Disability Foundation through his participation in ConnecTra’s Employment Mentorship Support Project, serving as a Community Connector from 2015-2018.
“My employment background is filled with words. I have a longstanding appreciation of the written word and have tried to find educational and employment opportunities that allowed me to embrace this aspect of who I am.”
Jordan joined the foundation having just completed a diploma of Technical Communication from BCIT, a program that led him to pursue employment that connected his love of writing to his lived experience as someone with a disability.
“During my studies, we were encouraged to identify a field where we could become subject matter experts and, as I thought about it, I quickly realized that there is little that I understand better than my existence as a person with a disability so I began to direct my pursuit of employment in that direction.”
After having been in the foundation for a year, as Jordan was exploring where he wanted his career to take him over the coming years, he saw that participating in the Royal Roads University leadership foundation program as a peer mentor was a good opportunity to help him both figure that out and further develop the skills needed to move on to different roles within the organization.
Jordan remembered that “all of us being quite quiet, restrained during the initial training sessions, as we all tried to find our footing in the training.”
As the training continued, Jordan appreciated that these sessions provided them with a safe space to discuss how things were going, their successes, worries, and thoughts outside the busyness of their day-to-day activities.
What Jordan liked about the program was that it was ongoing instead of a one-off session and provided numerous opportunities for continued growth. Jordan shares, “I had the opportunity to bring up new questions, experiences, and thoughts as they happened over the year or so I participated in the training. This made the training more dynamic. As I grew and developed through my day-to-day work experiences, I had an opportunity to reflect on these experiences during the training sessions.”
Jordan continues, “I appreciated how interactive it is and the way that Mark was able to draw people out, building comfort and connection as we completed exercises and activities.”
Because of the training’s interactivity nature, Jordan was pleased to see “an impressive growth in confidence and assertiveness from everyone participating in the training.”
When Jordan reflected on the skill learned he wishes to impart, he shares, “Communication is just so important at every level, at every step in a work environment. Particularly as we’re working remotely, it’s critical to have “check-in” times for teams, individuals, and as an organization to make sure that everything I proceeding as it should.”
Throughout the training, Jordan set an example and demonstrated his active listening skill, one of the most crucial leadership skills. “I have had numerous conversations with people, where I feel like I have been an attentive listener and colleague, who has lots to offer to those that I work with,” he says.
Jordan also felt that he has definitely grown, thank in part to this training. “I think I am much more assertive and outgoing now than I was previously. I also earned that personal growth and development is never done.”