Success Series #2 – Alex Stewart, Nova Scotia Power

 

“Never be afraid to provide your opinion. I tell my team that I want to know what they are thinking, don’t tell me what you think I want to hear.”

This month in our Success Series we are featuring Alex Stewart, Head of Customer Experience at Nova Scotia Power.

Alex has over 15 years of experience through supervising integrated marketing plans at both a national and regional level. Currently, he is responsible for the customer experience for Nova Scotia Power’s $130 million upgrade of its metering infrastructure.

 

Here’s What Alex Had to Say To Us…

 

How do you start your day?

Dog walk – Rain or shine, I start each day with at least a 30 minute walk with the family dog George. Great opportunity to get the blood flowing, collects my thoughts, and mentally prepare for my day.

How do you end your day?

Quiet reading – A couple of years ago, I made sleep a real priority. I now make sure I go to bed at a consistent time and part of my routine is to read something for pleasure prior to lights out. I found my quality sleep increased once I put away the remote and tablet at night.

What’s book has most impacted your life/business career?

Hard to nail down just one book – I am currently enjoying The Gatekeepers by Chris Whipple that provides insight into how the White House Chief of Staff impact US History and define each administration. It provides great lessons on leadership styles and consequences of certain behaviours.

What is the biggest obstacle you’ve encountered and how did you overcome it?

Bluenose Marathon – What started as a crazy late night challenge, ended up in my wife and I running 42.2 km in the first ever Bluenose Marathon. We overcame this challenge by setting out a training schedule and committed ourselves to it.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?

7Ps – Prior Proper Planning Prevents Piss Poor Performance. My father shared this saying with me at an early age and it has stuck with me in both my personal and business life. It speaks to the importance of developing and plan, following through, and then adapting based on results.

What’s the worst piece of advice you ever received?

I can’t think of any. That’s probably not a good sign.

What are some of your career highlights?

I have had the great opportunity to work across a number of industries and travel beyond the borders of Nova Scotia. In doing so, I have worked with a number of talent people to deliver creative solutions to business problems. Two specific highlights come to mind. The first would landing a TV production for Nova Scotia that ended up shooting five seasons in the province, and the second was working on the expansion of the Bell fibre-optic network in Atlantic Canada.

What do you do to relax?

Other than the dog walk, I enjoy spending time in the kitchen. I find following a recipe and creating something for the family to enjoy strangely relaxing. Now that my kids are older, I have started to pick up the golf clubs again to work on that elusive backswing.

What is the one thing that you’ve learned that you wish to pass on to others?

Never be afraid to provide your opinion. I tell my team that I want to know what they are thinking, don’t tell me what you think I want to hear.