On the last page of every issue of Industry West, we find a Saskatchewan business person or leader to answer our version of the Proust Questionnaire. Marcel Proust made the questionnaire famous, believing that 35 specific questions could reveal a person’s true nature. We grabbed this idea—you’ve probably seen it in Vanity Fair—and made our own version. The first five questions are ours, and then we ask our subject to pick their favourite Proust questions to answer.
Say hello to Shantel Lipp, president of the Saskatchewan Heavy Construction Association.
- Where are you from? I was born, raised, and never left Regina.
- Where did you attend school and what did you study? I went to Robert Usher Collegiate in Regina. I have some limited post secondary education from the University of Regina. I was fortunate to graduate high school early and had an opportunity to begin my working career with the City of Regina in an administrative role in the HR department. I had to take time off work to attend my high school graduation ceremony. I guess you could say I’m self-taught, and truthfully for many years not having a formal business degree used to be a major source of embarrassment for me. Looking back on my working career I’ve learned education is important BUT having a university education doesn’t necessarily equate to success in the business world. And today, I continue to learn from the great folks I meet and work with everyday.
- What is your career history? I’ve been blessed with some great opportunities over the years. I started my career with the City of Regina. I worked within many departments while at the city, which I believe provided me with a wide range of experience and taught me a lot about municipal government. After leaving the City of Regina, I joined the Saskatchewan Urban Municipalities Association (now Municipalities of Saskatchewan) to work in their Group Benefits division, after running that division for a few years I assumed the role of Manager of Corporate Programs and ran the annual SUMA convention. That experience led me into my current role as the President of the Saskatchewan Heavy Construction Association, a job that continues to be progressive and exciting.
- What’s the best piece of business or career advice you have or have been given? You can do anything you set your mind on, if you’re willing to work hard to get there. If life was easy it would be boring, how we get through life’s challenges, and victories help form our character. As an executive the advice that resonated most was a line from the TV show The Newsroom—“There’s a hole in the side of the boat, that hole is never going to be fixed and it is never going away, and you can’t get a new boat. This is your boat. What you have to do is bail water out, faster than it’s coming in.”
- What’s your favourite thing about Saskatchewan? We have a beautiful province, but the thing I love the most are the Saskatchewan people. We are kind, compassionate and are always willing to help our fellow man. In today’s age that’s a dying quality in people, yet it thrives here. I’ve been blessed to work with some amazing men and women in this industry, who are passionate about what they do and are compelled to give back to their communities because it’s just the Saskatchewan way.
- What is the trait you most deplore in others? It keeps people from living their best life.
- What or who is the greatest love of your life? Easily, my children. The people they are make me very proud. Our puppy is a very close second.
- Where would you most like to live? Hawaii. I’ve been there many times and to me it’s one of the most beautiful places in the world.
- What is your most marked characteristic? I’m not a quitter. If I think something is wrong, I will work as hard as I can to make it right.
- What is your greatest regret? All the time and energy I wasted worrying about what others thought of me.