The YouMeWe social enterprise and movement are built on a mindset that each of us has a responsibility to others. In order to act on that duty we need to consider our impact, and how to make that contribution sustainable. Through our consistent conscious-contributions™ we will live our most meaningful life.
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Partial client list
collaborating with clients since 2000
What clients are saying
“Suzanne’s presentation was entertaining, inspiring, thought-provoking, and engaging! It was fantastic to see and hear the reaction of the audience and how inspired everyone was. Many people commented that Suzanne’s message made them think beyond themselves to the greater contributions they may be able to make. We also incorporated a charitable jewelry extravaganza on Suzanne’s suggestion. The entire event was a huge success!”
Colleen Bannerman B.B.A, C.C.H President, Wasaga Beach Chamber of Commerce
“Suzanne Stevens spoke to our Annual Convention in Niagara Falls and just nailed it! One of the most difficult challenges in business today, the creation of a workplace culture where people want to work and want to stay, is no easy subject and can easily become cliché ridden and preachy. Suzanne attacked the issue with energy and critical insight. She demolished the myths around worker shortages and generational differences and then constructed an alternative approach that was seized upon by our franchisees. A post convention survey of all speakers placed her ahead of all our speakers in terms of giving them a new insight and a practical strategy for solving this challenge. Well done!”
Tom O'Neill - President Quesada Franchising of Canada Corp.
"Suzanne herself is an excellent role model for other women and the session was a big hit! Her presentation was engaging and the content was interesting, relevant and thought-provoking."
Nancy Forrester Manager, IT – ERP & BW Canadian Standards Association (CSA Group) Canada
Suzanne Stevens is a truly inspiring speaker. Her delivery was not only top-notch but she immediately connected with our audience and showed them how to explore their own Edgeness. She exudes confidence, passion and energy. It was an honour to have Suzanne at our Lean In event and she is a true example of a woman who “Leaned In”
Despina Zanganas R.G.D Partner and Creative Director, 108 ideaspace inc.
“I had the pleasure of hearing Suzanne Stevens speak at a CNW Group internal conference and recently at IABC luncheon. On both occasions, Suzanne inspired the audience to think, while engaging us in a conversation. Her highly dynamic style, flow and information all contribute to bringing the audience to the desired goal. People leave with clear actions to take that will impact our personal and business life.”
Elisa Schupp, Vice-President, Canada Newswire
"Suzanne is a bundle of positive energy with practical tips to share. She was highly engaging at our convention, getting everyone in the room interacting and leaving us with realistic ideas for recognizing and appreciating our team members. It was clear that Suzanne tailored her keynote address to our industry and company. I would highly recommend Suzanne as a professional speaker for any corporate event!"
Marcey Saunders, CHRE Quesada
"Suzanne ensures the audience is following her and circles back if not until they do. She is riveting. I have spent full days in training with her and she has had my complete focus the whole time. She is amazing at staying on time even when timing problems are thrown at her at the last minute. She is very entertaining in a professional way and makes it fun and safe to learn and try new things with her. Even when giving constructive criticism you still feel good about yourself. Her energy never waivers and is contagious. I have seen many speakers and she is flawless."
Susan Hermann Regional Vice President, Desjardins Financial Security Life Insurance Company
“On behalf of the management team at the Canada Revenue Agency, we wish to thank you for your presentation! The feedback from the attendees was overwhelmingly positive. Your ability to shed new light on techniques and methods needed to communicate effectively with staff was refreshing and insightful. The audience was engaged and enjoyed the interactive nature of your presentation”. We appreciate the high degree of professionalism you exhibited.”
Lia Karlos Manger, Canadian Revenue Agency, Canada
“Suzanne Stevens invested a lot of time understanding our business and the unique challenges we face, before she began designing our training day. Her preparation, excellent knowledge base, and well-honed communication and presentation skills made the day everything we had hoped for – and more! If you are looking for enlightening, relevant and engaging training I would highly recommend Suzanne.”
Victoria Sanjana Director of Finance and Administration, JAZZ.FM91, Canada
"Suzanne is a pro who delivers results. I had a team that needed to improve their sales presentation skills but were cynical when it came to investing money in any learning initiative. They thought most training was a waste of time and that the company’s seasoned sales force wouldn’t value nor invest time in a workshop. Despite this resistance, Suzanne was able to turn their views around and get them excited to participate. They not only went through the first session but signed up for the second part of the program. To this day, employees remember her program and the immense value they received based on Suzanne’s approach and content."
Lynn Nicolai, ACPC, PCC HR Director, Desjardins Financial Security Life Insurance Company
"I was inspired by the training on Leadership and Communications; it gave me tools for creating deeper understanding and building of relationships with various stakeholders. It also aided me to understand my leadership style and to always keep in mind that “it is all about the stakeholder with me in mind”. Well done Suzanne, you pushed me and the rest of us out of our comfort zone yet remained supportive throughout the training!"
Thandi Nkomo Education Program Officer, Rooftops Canada
"Suzanne Stevens is a most captivating and capable business trainer and motivational speaker Suzanne is tuned to her audience, and provides exactly what is required to bring home the critical behaviour or objective.”
David J. Miller President and Chief Operating Officer, Canada
“Brilliant. Innovative. Captivating. YouMeWe keynote is a message that we all need to hear; it is perfectly timed for the current state of our globe. It is bursting with current research, relate-able examples and practical ideas that I can put into action immediately.”
Deri Latimer CSP, Positively Speaking
"As an inspirational speaker, Suzanne takes you on a riveting journey to discover human genius and potential beyond borders. With respect, eloquence and a vibrating stage presence, Suzanne shares moving stories of entrepreneurs who have decided to stand-up and make a difference in our world."
Nabil Doss Expert in Influential Communication
“I want to thank you again for the incredible talk this morning! I’ve been receiving compliments on your behalf from the delegates and volunteers all day. They loved you and really appreciated the thought-provoking stories and ideas you shared. Can’t thank you enough for the energy, experience, and professionalism you brought to the event. It was an absolute pleasure working with you and Mike and I hope we have the opportunity to cross paths again.”
Karen Chafe, Senior Program Manager Junior Achievement London and District
“Suzanne F. Stevens delivers a talk that is not only engaging and interactive with her audience, she has a genuine “Edge” and authentic approach about her experience and story. What separates her from other speakers in her ability to create a safe environment and connect with all ranges of our audience.”
Pam Sethi Lean In Canada
"The feedback we have received from all participants has been exceptional and this has everything to do with Suzanne’s skill, approach, focus and energy. Our organization is better today by right of our relationship with Suzanne."
Richard Willett Vice President, Food & Beverage, Metro Toronto Convention Centre
"Suzanne is among of handful of leadership consultants that has made a significant impact on myself and others. I literally have her voice in my head, in the most positive way possible, whenever I’m preparing for an important leadership moment or presentation. While both supporting and challenging participants, she has a unique ability to unlock potential in individuals of all experience sets - CEOs to early leaders. I’ve seen her dramatically improve people’s communication skills - both verbally and non-verbally. Suzanne has my full endorsement."
Jenn Symth-Whelly VP, Strategic Planning & Execution at Hootsuite
Working with Suzanne produced tremendous results for the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. Suzanne's needs analysis and custom built solution, resulted in several departments being trained and motivated to work more collaboratively. Key systems and policies were improved and overall communication and customer satisfaction made significant gains. Everyone on the team loved working with her.
John B Houghton Past VP of Sales
"Suzanne was a wonderful speaker - both warm and engaging. Her presentation was full of genuine life lessons and inspired everyone in the room to find their true north and follow their dreams. She gave practical steps to what can sometimes be an overwhelming topic and made us laugh along the way. Can't wait to hear her speak again!"
Alison Maunder Event Coordinator, Lean In Canada
What colleagues are saying
“Suzanne F. Stevens is passionate about people being recognized for their contributions to the well-being of the team. Her character is inclusive and affirming. She is conscious about the language she chooses to create a safe environment that builds trust and appreciation of the strengths of the team. Suzanne is willing to see both sides of an issue and work collaboratively. I highly recommend her approach."
Elaine Froese Farm Family Coach and Professional Speaker, Canada
"You give Gratitude like no one else that I know. Your message is always so thoughtful, personal and meaningful. I appreciate YOU."
Jennifer Spear Unscripted, Canada
I've had the immense privilege of working with Suzanne F. Stevens at global leadership level. Her exemplary professionalism, contagious enthusiasm, and extraordinary leadership skills were an absolute asset to our board. As President of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers (CAPS), Suzanne led the association with vision, courage, and care, leaving an important legacy for years to come.
Nabil Doss Expert in Influential Communication
"Suzanne visualized her Ignite Excellence Conference being an outstanding success, and her goal was fully realized with an amazing array of speakers and entertainers, all participating to support her Foundation. It was a pleasure being part of her event. Suzanne is a highly accomplished business owner whose heart is truly in the right place. She inspires excellence and demonstrates the power of philanthropy that is all too rare amongst her peers. We can all learn from Suzanne's vision for a better world. I am proud to know her and highly recommend her as a colleague and friend."
Michelle Ray, CSP Leadership Expert and Consultant
"I had the pleasure of working with Suzanne F. Stevens on the national board during her tenure as the president of the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers. Suzanne demonstrated a brilliant capacity to lead a diverse team, communicate complex messages with flair and professionalism, and facilitate challenging meetings. A tireless and dedicated leader, Suzanne always demonstrated the highest degree of empathy, compassion, and professionalism."
Michael Kerr, Hall of Fame business speaker President of Humor at Work
"Highly supportive, dedicated and committed individual; gives 150% to everything she does and achieves what she says she will do. Suzanne is a leader who you want to follow and want to support; you will be energized by her drive, enthusiasm and inspiration; you will want to be part of whatever she is focused on.
It has been and is a pleasure to work with Suzanne on the CAPs board, thank you."
Michael B. Flint Project Management Consultant
"I witnessed Suzanne provide exemplary leadership in her position as the CAPS National President. Suzanne led her team of directors and many other volunteers in the organization to bring about more positive changes than any previous president I can recall. Suzanne is inclusive, collaborative, strong, insightful and has a warm yet powerful presence, regardless of whether she is in a one-to-one meeting or on stage in front of hundreds of people.
I have thoroughly enjoyed working with Suzanne, have the greatest respect for her and hope we will have other opportunities to work together for many years hence!
David Gouthro President, The Consulting Edge
January 20, 2007, eighteen Canadian women arrived in Kenya. On our first day at African International University we attended a welcome ceremony. Our host, Lois Shaw, an American missionary, the late Dr. Douglas Carew, the Chairman of the Africa International University, along with a dozen wives of PhD students gathered in the chapel.
At the welcome ceremony, Dr. Carew shared what he believed to be the biggest issue in Africa. “The biggest problem in Africa today,” he said, “is not AIDS, poverty, disease, education, or urbanization; the biggest problem is leadership. When moral leaders with integrity and justice arise, then Africa's problems will be solved.”
Within a month after receiving this reflective message I was training a professor, PhD students, and ambitious women on how to fundraise and communicate as leaders. A few short months later, I founded the Ignite Excellence Foundation fund, (renamed in 2016 to YouMeWe Foundation Fund), with the goal to raise funds to provide tertiary education scholarships for prospective women leaders in developing countries. The goal is to create more leaders with integrity, while addressing injustices suffered by women and children in developing countries.
After returning to my influential communication sales and leadership training organization, Ignite Excellence Inc., back in Toronto, Canada, I couldn’t kick a nagging feeling. By offering free training to the students and professors at African International University, was I taking a much needed African person’s job? Was there an expert in influence in Kenya or surrounding area who could have been paid to provide training services?
A couple years later I became very unsettled. Leading a team of consultants and training corporations whose primary focus was to win business to optimize profits was not filling my soul. The recession also kicked in, which lead me to work in industries that may have filled my bank, but not my ambition. I craved to immerse myself into an experience that was more fulfilling than seeking the mighty dollar and more significant than my professional achievements.
I remember sitting on my couch, looking at all my stuff, and contemplating: “What contribution was I really making? What impact was I really creating?”
I wanted to do something bold. I need something that would stimulate a trajectory to something that would instil more meaning in my life. I spoke with my husband (Micheal K. Gingerich) with the pleading eyes of a wife, “Let’s take one, two or three years and go back to Africa. We could create a platform for African women with integrity to share their insight to educate future African women leaders.”
“What do you think?”
Mike hesitated for what seemed like a lifetime, and then smiled,
“You know, you will have to take the lead...but I will follow.” (Music to a woman's ears.)
It took time for us to get organized. Mike left his leadership position and I reorganized my training team. Then we sold almost everything.
In March 2010, we were ready to start our adventure of a lifetime. We embarked on a journey with a mission, which was to create an initiative that would cultivate, celebrate and inspire future leaders in emerging countries. My passion leads us to interview pioneering women in countries within Africa for WisdomExchangeTv.com. The unsung heroines who were, and in many cases still are, suppressed; whose voices needed to be amplified. The uncelebrated mentors, for the future African women leaders. A bridge over the chasm needed to be built, from African young women seeking to learn, lead and succeed in life, business, and community to easy access to African women’s inspiration and wisdom.
Our strategy was to create a website where we interviewed pioneering African women leaders who would inspire and educate future African women leaders - WisdomExchangeTV.com.
After interviewing over seventy pioneering African women from seventeen countries, we were awe-inspiring.
Each of these pioneers demonstrated perseverance, tenacity, belief, and unwavering dedication to uplift the lives of others through their contributions to their community, country and continent. Most of these women came from very humble beginnings, and yet they were rich in an ability to address a human rights violation or creating sustainable opportunities for fellow citizens all while creating a ripple effect. Their aspirations are realized because of their courage, their character, and their choice to serve society.
We felt humbled next to these pioneering women. I questioned, what had taken me so long to actively contribute? All I can come up with is, in the West, we often talk about leaving a legacy; that is something we think about doing later in life. African women live their legacy; it is a philosophy of how they live their life. These women are on the propitious of transforming African societies – because they make their contribution count - everyday.
YouMeWe was a website that started as nothing more than Mike and my attempt to share our experiences on our twenty-month journey through Africa. With each interaction on our African journey, our perspective, and beliefs were transformed. The focus on ‘Me’ evolved. ‘You’ and ‘We’ captured our curiosity and took us on a unique adventure, which developed the intention of YouMeWe, from a journal of our journey to a social enterprise. Its new mandate is to focus on igniting consistent conscious-contributions™, in which individuals and organizations are made aware, inspired, and provided strategies on how to contribute to fill a gap in society, and ensure their intentions are having a positive impact long-term.
Through creating awareness of YouMeWe social enterprise, it will morph into a movement where social enterprises and organizations that adhere to the manifesto of YouMeWe are celebrated. The intention is to inspire citizens to shift the focus from ‘Me’ to ‘We’, consciously. Through this lens, we hope to inspire you with insights and tools on how to contribute to your organization, community, country, or beyond while creating a positive ripple effect. On this journey of optimizing your impact, you will also live your most meaningful life.
The goal of the YouMeWe mindset is to raise consciousness and inspire individuals and organizations to lead or participate in contributions that positively impact their community, country, or beyond long-term, promoting a more caring and more inclusive human race. Please join us on this journey of YouMeWe.