GS2018: The Interview Blogs – #RegenerativeCities Mark Beagan & Will Readshaw

20 november 2018

The Interview Blogs highlight the experiences of Global Shapers: Generation 2018, the workflow coaches, executive and senior leadership team members, and a board member from The Lovinklaan Foundation. The #ShareTheStory team interviewed these individuals with specific interview questions geared towards their unique experience during the face-to-face program, October 13 – 17, in Boston, Massachusetts, USA. Today, an interview with Mark Beagan, Corporate Director of HR Canada and workflow coach for the workflow #RegenerativeCities, and Will Readshaw, Global Shaper of Generation 2018 and workflow captain for the workflow #RegenerativeCities. 

How did you get involved with Global Shapers and #FutureCities?

MB: I was asked by Brian Kundert in California and I had expressed real interest in bringing my learning and development expertise into the program. It’s a very well-run program and it’s just a pleasure to be part of it from engagement of individuals, in terms of getting individuals to work on real world problems that we can take their learning to redirect the direction of Arcadis. I find that very compelling and important; I wanted to contribute any way that I could. It’s my first time participating at Global Shapers and been a great run. I’ve contributed to programs similar to this at other companies and this is the best of this type of program I’ve seen.

Why is #RegenerativeCities important to you and Arcadis?

MB: What is interesting is that I live in a city that is regenerating as we speak. I’m from Toronto, Ontario and the city is growing by over 100,000 people a year. The city itself has a large portion of its property that are legacy industrial brown fields and are currently being looked at for redevelopment. There is real opportunity and it may be a little bit cliché but just to improve the overall quality of life. It’s a community that’s right on Lake Ontario so rising sea levels are a real issue in Toronto. The rapid growth of the city itself as well as a lot of the environmental impacts that can come with that are other issues. So, it’s very important that the workflow, in particular, take the learnings across the globe. I have seen this in action: water resiliency experts across the globe have consulted with our city. That level of expertise is helping my home community and helping to make my already amazing community even better.

Tell us about your #RegenerativeCities workflow team.

MB: The team is comprised of people from all across the globe, the team is psychologically diverse and skill-set diverse. I was amazed at how quickly they formed and moved straight to performing, and that’s quite admirable in this tight high-pressure cooker environment that they are working in. The second thing I found fascinating is that, I know on paper the program is to look at real world issues and bring solutions through the eye of millennial, but you put young professionals in a room with creativity, use of digital technologies and multidisciplinary perspectives and in three days, a real world issue can be moved forward.

Tell us about your #RegenerativeCities workflow.

WR: I’m working on the #RegenerativeCities workstream which is developing transit hubs following a MODEX assessment. And what we’ve seen is Dalston Junction and Dalston Kingsland are ideal for redevelopment in London. We’re looking to introduce a mixed-use development of residential, retail and integration with the new Crossrail 2 rail link.

How do you feel about working in a multi-cultural environment?

WR: I enjoy working with different cultures and different diversities because they introduce me to different ways of working. Knowledge is what we are all here to gain. With different cultures and a diverse working environment, we learn different ways of working.

How will you create a ripple effect after you get back?

WR: Eve Mason and myself have been invited to the buildings board in the UK and we hope to share every single deliverable from every workflow with the board so that they can implement it the UK’s plan going forward.

What needs to happen to make Global Shapers a positive experience?

WR: For this to be a positive experience we need to take everything we learn here and take it back into our everyday work so that the ripple effect is felt throughout all Arcadis. We also need to carry on the relationships we build here, not just leave them when we leave Boston – carry on connecting with everyone here.

What’s the one thing you want other people to know about Global Shapers?

WR: What everyone should know about Global Shapers is that you can never be wrong. No suggestion is stupid; everyone is willing to listen to everyone’s ideas

The Interview Blogs were powered by the #ShareTheStory workflow and the blog interview team, including the Shapers that were virtually present at the f2f program.