Robert Barrett

Robert Barrett is a Think Jar Collective contributor

A “career path” is sometimes easier to explain in retrospect.  After studying psychology at McGill and Cornell, Bob rode the 60’s wave into his first gig as a professional hippie, interpreting his generation to the Government of Canada as a consultant on social policy.

Bob’s next cover story was that he was doing community development work and becoming a licensed Class A Big Game guide and a Certified farrier.    In fact, he largely disappeared into the Plains Cree Indian world, living in an isolated camp in the Rocky Mountains of Alberta for 7 years during the seventies. The adults in camp were the last generation of residential school survivors, and Alberta’s ‘70s oil boom relentlessly challenged their traditional lifestyle, language, culture and spiritual life.  Nevertheless, the elders generously rose to the challenge of educating a young man who had “no” discernible skills.

After his years living in the wilderness, Bob started accepting invitations to consult at the interfaces among Aboriginal organizations, governments and industry.  He re-tooled by completing an MBA at University of Alberta, became a Certified Management Consultant, and joined Western Management Consultants (WMC) in 1986.

By the early ‘90s, WMC had outgrown its original structure and stood at the cusp of either transformational change or oblivion.  Fortunately, Bob’s consulting practice was in the doldrums at the time.  As the consultant who had the least to lose regardless of the outcome, he was tapped by his peers to lead WMC’s re-structuring task force, and then to become National Director of the revitalized organization.  His greatest achievement as National Director was to establish term limits for the position, thereby avoiding the need for his colleagues to depose him.

Bob has extensive consulting experience in the areas of: policy and legislative analysis and development; strategic, business and municipal planning; governance; development and management of multi-lateral partnerships; change management and organization development; market and economic analysis; and Aboriginal relations.   Sectoral experience related to human services includes health, education, social services and services for people with disabilities.

Bob lives in Edmonton, Alberta, with his wife, Pam, and enjoys their children and grandchildren.  He keeps his creative thinking skills honed through singing with the Richard Eaton Singers, a local symphonic choir. Bob also advises community charities and is passionate about skiing, cycling and outdoor living.

Bob understands that he might have a right brain, but is somewhat skeptical, pending evidence of same.  Think Jar Collective members that know Bob are honored to have his mind boggling gifts in critical thinking and leadership contributing to the work of the collective.

Western Management Consultants Website: Here