Sport Law & Strategy Group Shares Helpful Tips During COVID-19 – Update 10

Published June 4, 2020

The SLSG is cotinuing to host its weekly “Conversation Matters: You Ask, We Share” where we spend an hour with sport leaders from across the country sharing information and responding to questions on employment, insurance, leadership, financial management, grief management, and other matters related to managing through COVID-19. The free, online drop-in session hosted by SLSG Partners Steve Indig and Dina Bell-Laroche will remain flexible, based on your questions, and hopefully leave sport leaders feeling informed and inspired to put in place measures to deal with the stuff that is  keeping you up at night. As needed, we are also inviting members from our team or other thought leaders who can help sport leaders make better decisions. Thanks to the CEOs of Triathlon Canada and Canada Artistic Swimming for sharing their experiences this week on the use of the EQ-i and the EQ 360 and how emotional intelligence is central as we look to return to sport.

  • Steve provided three key updates from the legal realm:
    • Seek clarification if the organization’s insurance policy includes a contagious disease exclusion
    • Hurry up and slow down, ensure your return to sport is done safely, appropriately and considers the required standard of care to create a safe sporting environment
    • As temporary leave provisions may be coming to an end, review your applicable provincial/territorial employment legislation for any amendments or extensions permitted.
  • Some of the key lessons shared today from Kim Van Bruggen and Jackie Buckingham included:
    • We need to tap into our heads and our hearts as we look to return to sport.
    • The emotional connection is why we love sport so much. Ensuring that we are attending to more of the heart space will be critically important.
    • The EQ-i helps us become more self-aware of an often unexplored inner landscape. By being able to name our emotions with more precision, we can then work to express ourselves more effectively to strengthen our interpersonal relationships. The instrument also helps us understand how we make decisions and our capacity to manage stress. The more we are aware of what is arising, the more we can practice self compassion and deepen our empathy with others.
    • The EQ 360 is a cool way for us to evaluate our performance. Boards who want to get a better sense of their CEO’s leadership capacity can use the tool to get a more fulsome picture of their emotional intelligence. The CEO can work with the HR Committee to set up a plan to expand their leadership development and share a snapshot with the Board of their growth plans. If we adopt a learning mindset, this kind of tool can provide additional and practical ways for the CEO to enhance leadership competencies.
    • We spoke about the great paradox in sport … in other sectors, the brightest stars are promoted and the first thing they are offered is a performance coach. In sport, the birthplace of coaching, very few leaders use coaches to help them develop and grow. Part of what we explored is how helpful it is to have a neutral, caring leadership coach in your corner to help you uncover those blind spots and provide you with practical and useful daily practices to increase awareness and inspire lasting change.
    • Finally, a commitment to learn or kaizen is a trait of highly successful people. The more you adopt this growth mindset, the more you inspire others to follow suit. Ways to do that is to engage in seminars, read books, take a workshop, engage in leadership development, hire a leadership coach, or find a mentor.
    • We ended with our high hopes for the sector and this included finding new ways to innovate as we look to re-imagine what sport could look like; to disrupt some of our old mindsets and ways of being so that we design systems and structures that will better support us; to use common language to work through some of the natural tension that arises when people work together in common cause; and to find a healthier way for us to channel our competitiveness so that we move sport in the right direction. We left feeling hopeful and inspired that Canada could lead the way in our collective desire to make sport better.
  • Dina reminded people to consider the following:
    • Dina shared David Whyte’s Poem on Start Close-In that speaks to how we can find the courage to begin again after everything in the world that we know and love has been taken away. It’s a beautiful reminder that we need to trust in something greater to more fully express and experience all that life has to offer.

You can access previous webinars or join our next Conversation Matters: You Ask, We Share! on June 17 at 12:00 PM EST where Steve and Dina will be welcoming everyone back for another legal and leadership update. To learn more about us please visit For more information please contact Dina Bell-Laroche at 613-591-1246 or 613-294-4118 or

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