Ok, this is not waxing political, so we are clear.

A few weeks ago it was announced, again, that Canada is the 2nd best place to live in the world. We always seem to lose to Switzerland on this one. Jerks.

You can read about it here:

Canada named 2nd best country in the world…again, report finds

OK, I really like the Swiss, but I am going to contend for Canada on this one, based largely on one matter of fact. And it is for the same reason that I defend teams that prepare themselves for growth even during peaceful and fulfilling times.


Canada is always in a state of growth.

Growth is a mark of health and this is actually one of the defining characteristics in the rating system. It is where I disagree. Canada is a country based on expansion under all types of circumstances. It is the place to follow your dreams…even your American ones! And yet it is quiet and unassuming.

Canada carries all the growth characteristics that you want to see in an organization, and in yourself. Here are a few comparisons to consider when you rate your countries next time:

  1. Space – We have a lot. We are known for it. Space means others can join in without pushing the others out. It makes us unique. When you create space and utilize it as a positive feature, you can invite others in to make the whole better, instead of creating walls that slowly weaken what is inside.
  2. Humble Pie – We eat it regularly. It is hard not to when you live next to your self-conscious cousin. You just know where you are capable and know where you need work. Because you have seen how people respond to the loud kid at the table, you know what it means to speak when necessary, and let your actions tell the story. Good people are attracted to this trait. In fact, they can thrive in it.
  3. Survival of…all of us – Canada does community well. Especially when we do not agree. Maybe it is because we are vast in size, or operating in a parliamentarian governance, or we just have always known what it feels like to be the new neighbour with thriving immigration. Canada is better at balancing a special relationship than anyone I know: Being a guest and a host at the same time. People lack fear in this environment…and that is OK.
  4. Mistakes – Canada is pretty open about making them. And learning from them. Truth and Reconciliation is something we could discuss here, and we will continue to discuss for years to come. Not many nations have tip-toed into the painful aspects of their history and gone through the mess of figuring out what needs to be fixed. Any group of people that acknowledges where they are not doing well and letting others see that is moving in the right direction. Most do not.

A good nation is kind of like a good organization. It creates good people. Oh there will always be outliers in society, but the goal here is not conformity. It is citizenship. Good citizenship creates another key characteristic that Canada has always displayed to the world: Potential.

I guess that is why we are #2…you can always do better!

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