Endings and Beginnings

Whenever I am asked about my job, I beam!  I simply have the best job in the world.

For the past year and a half, I have worked as a consultant with Sanofi, one of the world’s leading healthcare and vaccine companies, dedicated to saving lives.  My role is Head of of Organizational Development for Canada and the scope of my work includes change, culture, performance, leadership and talent.

I wake up every morning jumping out of bed to rush into work.  Every day at work is an opportunity for me to make a difference.  At the end of each day, I evaluate what I have accomplished.  If I’m not happy with what I achieved, I re-double my efforts the next day.  What is it about Sanofi that enables me to do my best work?  For me, it starts with leadership.  My boss. Julia O’Rawe, is one of the best HR practitioners I have worked with.  Her standards are exceptionally high.  She does not suffer fools gladly. There is  always time and opportunity to creatively debate and constructively discuss issues to ensure the right interventions.  And she is fun, with a killer sense of humour!

I have the privilege of presenting  OD initiatives to the Canadian Management Committee monthly, knowing that the President of Sanofi Pasteur, Mark Lievonen, will  be there to support me in his quest  to creating an engaged culture where employees can do their best work.  Hugh O’Neil, the CEO and President of Sanofi Aventis Canada, is a leader I aspire to be like.  I have best friends at work – – people to talk to, challenge, coach, have lunch with, laugh with, learn from, share pictures with.  It is an environment of professionalism, competence and people having your back.   This is my last week at work as I complete my contract with Sanofi and focus on taking care of myself.

Leaving work has been one of the most difficult things I’ve had to do so far.  But holding on to work when you are not able to deliver to your best level is not an option for me.  What I have learned is that it is possible to find work with joy and meaning. And while I won’t be in the work environment for the rest of the year, I am going to turn my attention to other pursuits. Starting with learning how to make Thai food!

– Munira

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15 thoughts on “Endings and Beginnings”

  1. Munira, I smiled as I read this post. I cannot help but remember all of the amazing coaching and laughs and Thai lunches we shared in our few months working together. You are one of the most beautiful and inspiring women I have ever had the chance to work with and learn from. You’re in my thoughts and prayers.

    Amrika

    1. Oh my goodness. Your note made me smile and brought back memories of working at saint Elizabeth! How the heck are you? You must have finished your MBA. Would love to hear the latest. That Thai restaurant we frequented was pretty good wasn’t it? Munira

      1. You bet, it was delicious…we will have to schedule a lunch there soon. Things are great, spent a few months in Italy before I started working full time. Finished school last year and started working at J&J, so far I’m really enjoying it. You always talked about how important it is to love what you do:)

        Really nice to hear from you. Sending positive vibes your way! Here if you need anything, I left my number with Sabrina.

        Amrika

  2. Keeping you in my praters everyday.Sending you tons & tons & tons 7 tons of positive vibes.

    Warm hugs and special,special prayers always.

  3. Endings and beginnings while bitter-sweet can be a springboard to something much greater. This is your journey my friend. Sanofi, I am certain is missing your presence and your energy force. If you are making a menu, do include red-curry chicken, spring rolls, mango salad – the possibilities are endless 🙂

  4. Dear Munira Aunty,

    I really admire your ability to find the silver lining in any situation, cloudy or sunny. I am positive that it is because of your excellent attitude that you will fully recover. I am keeping you in my prayers and sending you lots and lots of positive vibes! Andddd, I may just hound Sabrina to get me your recipes, haha!
    Best wishes,

    Atifa 🙂

      1. Haha oh dear Munira Aunty I think you may have me confused for another Atifa! I would love to be in Paris, but I’m still in Canada!
        As for the cookbook, I think that’s an excellent idea! Maybe you could even do an online cookbook, something like a blog perhaps? You could even include some family favourite recipes, that would be interesting to read. I’m just learning how to cook now, and it would be nice to have something that is written for beginners. 🙂

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