In archival science, as in mountaineering and climbing, teamwork keeps us moving forward! Lisa Tremblay-Goodyer arrived at Library and Archives Canada (LAC) somewhat by accident; she had planned on a career in teaching. But Lisa has blossomed in this environment, where she can rely on a friendly professional network that makes her life easier.
Lisa acquired her taste for adventure from her father, whose accomplishments included crossing the Atlantic on a 27-foot sailboat. Bold but careful, Lisa loves to get away from it all. Whether downhill skiing, trekking, climbing or mountaineering, she uses every free moment to “play outdoors.” She and her spouse have climbed a trail in the Alps that they nicknamed the bee trail.
The leadership that Lisa displays on the job is not the same as that required in climbing, where some things are beyond her control, such as the swarm of bees that surrounded her during a crucial section of that climb in the Alps. But climbing often involves big adrenaline rushes: “In the end, we were simply glad to be alive!”
After a somewhat difficult return from France, where she had been studying for five years, Lisa began teaching at the Royal Military College of Canada. Looking for more stable employment, she applied at a variety of places and found a position at LAC, working on the Jean Chrétien archives project. This was her initial encounter with archival science. She learned a great deal in the field, including the value of teamwork: “What I discovered was great collegiality, a real willingness to share research and tools, and the benefits of doing so. I could breathe! It was very different from what I had seen in the academic community, where the tendency was to conceal research and discoveries. This collegiality and sharing of knowledge are unbelievable values in our workplace.”
Today, Lisa is delighted that she was able to become part of LAC and that her talents have been recognized. She has also discovered another passion: management. She likes decision-making, planning and managerial responsibilities: “I enjoyed my earlier years in the processing rooms, working with documents; today, I am focused on supporting this fieldwork.” Lisa is a manager for whom teamwork is the biggest motivator. She is expanding her team, rather than shrinking it: “We’re one big family here. Maybe I’m exaggerating a bit, but it’s true. My team is important. We’re a cornerstone of the building.”
Originally from the city of Québec, Lisa sometimes misses her family. But one of the things that makes LAC special is the network of friendships that develops here and makes life easier. Lisa is a wonderful listener and has no problems connecting with her colleagues. The intellectual curiosity of her co-workers and the pleasure they take in their work impress her and motivate her. Lisa had not considered a career at LAC, but she feels fulfilled here. Her work makes her smile, and that is what she conveys to her colleagues: “Smiling makes you happier, and laughing makes the work environment and our daily lives much more pleasant. It’s physiological and it works!”