Why work with Syzygy Learning & Facilitation?
Our clients are people interested in finding positive, productive ways to address interpersonal issues at work. We specialize in relationship building and conflict resolution between management and unions although we also work with each independently. The other part of our practice focuses on facilitating meetings and conferences aimed at strategic planning, priority setting, and in some cases, assisting boards or groups of people find better ways to work together.
Here's what some of our clients have to say...
"Over the course of a lengthy career, I have worked with many facilitators and organizations who strive to assist individuals and groups to deal with occupational or other human resource issues. I must say that I have never worked with a group like Syzygy. Their approach to working with us has been unique and exceptional.
They developed a program and learning tools that were absolutely perfect for us and held sessions that have demonstrated already a high level of success by allowing the various participants to gain a totally new perspective on our challenges and our situation.
Barbara and Dan clearly understand group dynamics but more importantly the importance that every individual must play to bring about strong and lasting results. They took the time to reach out to the various people in the sessions and help them both verbalize their perceptions and issues but also help them better understand the group dynamic that often plays behind the scenes and can have a greater importance than any single issue impacting people working together.
They designed a program that not only brought the group to a greater understanding of individual roles but also the impact each of those have on the group dynamic. I recommend their services to any organization dealing with issues of conflicting priorities and characters as they clearly demonstrated that their process truly allows for a full involvement by everyone without diminishing individual feelings and concerns."
Jean La Rose, CEO
Aboriginal Peoples Television Network
"We had the pleasure of working most recently with Barbara Saxberg to design and facilitate our triennial Convention Strategic Planning Session. From the beginning of the planning process to the end of the reporting phase, Ms. Saxberg demonstrated the skills of a knowledgeable and experienced facilitator. With the assistance of her two colleagues, she guided convention delegates to positive and achievable outcomes. The sessions were thorough, focused and enjoyable. We are confident that the end results will help the Board of Directors prepare a three-year action plan with realistic goals."
Denis Collette, President
CBC Pensioners National Association
"We set out on a journey to develop a shared vision of what we wanted our relationship with our union partners to be. With this common understanding, shared with both union presidents, we then developed a training program for all administrators at the College – to ensure that we all started with the foundation and tools required to realize this vision. Barb and Dan were instrumental in helping us to develop this program, and then delivered it. Their expertise, flexible style, and understanding of the important and monumental journey we were on was key to the outstanding success of the program – but more significantly, the culture change in our group. I am confident that we will be successful, largely due to the Syzygy team."
Cheryl L Jensen, President and CEO
Algonquin College, Ottawa, Ontario
"Syzygy Learning & Facilitation has been an excellent learning resource for the Bermuda Public Services Union (BPSU) for the past few years. Barbara Saxberg and Dan Oldfield have provided our officers with a rewarding and memorable experience on several occasions when they facilitated workshops. Participants in these workshops were very much impressed with Barbara's and Dan’s wealth of knowledge and experience, which allowed them to elaborate on a wide range of subjects. The Education Committee of the BPSU is grateful for the services that Barbara and Dan have provided."
Kevin Grant, Chairman, Education Committee
Bermuda Public Services Union
"As a facilitator myself, I have used techniques that I have acquired by observing Barb in action. She is smart and compassionate. She is also very intuitive and able to adapt a session to the response from participants. Barb is also very skilled in handling difficult or awkward situations in discreet and non-intrusive ways. Participating in her workshops is never a waste of time. You come away from the experience with new skills and a new understanding of yourself and others."
Jo-Ann Roberts, Deputy Leader
The Green Party of Canada
"I have found Barb to be smart, creative, resourceful, determined, professional, and dedicated. She is the kind of person you want on your team, or even better, working on your behalf. Barb is deeply committed to learning, and thinks strategically about how best to create a healthy learning environment. She is passionate, and this passion is contagious. She is able to articulate her vision, and bring people on her side to create consensus. Above all else Barb is a good and caring human being, who is both professional and fun to work with. I believe Barb to be a great partner on work projects, and I highly recommend her."
Todd Spencer, Senior Director, National Operations
Vertica Resident Services
"Barbara displays an innovative approach to leadership that develops skills to improve outcomes for failing organizations. She brings years of experience in conflict resolution and collaborative problem solving for the development of personal skills for effective leaders. I would not hesitate to endorse Barbara to assist any organization in developing its leaders."
Glenn Sullivan, President
Atlantic Provinces Professional Fire Fighters Association
"Barbara and Dan did a great job keeping our discussions focused and productive. Demonstrating their experience, knowledge and professional abilities under circumstances that required flexibility and sensitivity, they were definitely an important part of the success of our collective work".
Robyn Benson, National President, Retired
Public Service Alliance of Canada
"I have worked with Dan and Barb in many capacities; across the bargaining table, in the back rooms and, more recently, in front of audiences interested in labour-management co-operation. I can say, without hesitation, that they offer a combination of experience and expertise that will enhance the learning of anyone participating in one of their seminars. They are true professionals and I highly recommend them."
George C.B. Smith, Adjunct Professor
Schools of Business & Industrial Relations, Queen's University
"Barbara did an excellent job focusing issues and leading the team in exploring solutions that would work for both labour and management. Her role was instrumental in healing what had been a damaged relationship. She proved to be an excellent communicator, problem-solver and facilitator. "
Warren Edmondson, Former Director General
Federal Mediation & Conciliation Service
"Barbara is an expert adult education designer and facilitator in areas of conflict resolution and leadership. Keys to her success are in-depth research to meet specific training needs of her clients, meticulous education design according to those needs and expert interactive facilitation. Participants leave her training with enhanced perspectives along with a deeper understanding of team work."
Kai Lai, Equality Rights Coordinator
Canadian National Office, United Steelworkers
"I was fortunate to work with Dan for over 9 years. We started by sitting across the table from each other but, after a massive transformation in the CBC-CMG industrial relations relationship, we began to sit together. Dan's leadership and guidance through this transformation was nothing less than astounding. He helped to guide his organization, the people and even the detractors, to ensure success and the beginning of a new relationship with CBC. Although many individuals were involved in the successful transformation of that relationship, I would say that Dan was the key and most instrumental person to our continued success."
Ron Ouellette, CEO
The Cooper Group
"Barbara Saxberg is an inspiring educator. I speak from personal experience having been both her student and co-facilitator in a number of leadership development, train the trainer and conflict resolution courses. Without exception each course was conducted- from ice-breaker to new skills inventory- along a well designed arc of ascending understanding. Barb’s great facility is reading the room and keeping tabs on individuals’ uptake as well as overall class energy. Her depth allows for adjustments in a flash to keep things fun as well as enlightening. I was awed to watch a pro at work."
David Hawkins, Senior Producer
"I have had the pleasure of working with Barbara Saxberg over a number of years while she was a member of the CLC Education Advisory Committee. I have also observed her in action as an educator at the Labour College of Canada. I admire the breadth of knowledge she brings to designing and delivering a wide range of labour education for a diversity of adult learners and learning styles."
Barbara Byers, Former Secretary-Treasurer
Canadian Labour Congress
"The impact of digital technology on the media industry has been transformative, causing a major shift in the paradigm for management and unions. In working through the resulting issues, Dan's insightfulness, understanding of people and ability to find mutually workable solutions - all with a good dose of humour - allowed everyone to move forward. Sharing his talents through Syzygy Learning & Facilitation is a natural evolution."
Clara Arnold, Former V-P Talent & Engagement
"I met Barbara at the Labour College of Canada where she was conducting workshops on leadership and communication skills. Innovative, enthusiastic, approachable and deeply knowledgeable are qualities that instantly stood out to me about her and her teaching methods.
I would engage/work with her again in a heartbeat."
Colleen Ayoup, Communications Professor
Vanier College, Ste Laurent, QC
"Barbara has a thoughtfulness about her. In design of group process with groups. I love her commitment to the detail, the purpose, the heart, and the playfulness of people in their work."
Tenneson Woolf, Meeting Designer and Facilitator