he Ontario Society for Training and Development (OSTD) has gone national and transformed into the Canadian Society for Training and Development (CSTD).
CSTD is a new, national association of training and development professionals with the mandate of helping to boost the productivity and profitability of Canadian businesses by encouraging better training and professional development of employees and executives across the country.
“Smart companies and organizations understand that by investing in their people through new, innovative training and professional development tools and programs, they will ultimately see a very real and very tangible return on that investment in terms of a higher-calibre workforce, higher productivity and, most importantly, an improved bottom line,” said Dale Wilcox, president of CSTD. “Our goal is to take that message right across Canada, and to link training and development professionals with their counterparts in all provinces and in other countries around the world.”
The drive to take the organization to a national level kicked into high gear in late 2002 when OSTD gave a survey to members at its annual conference. OSTD was established in 1946 and has 1,700 members across the country, most of them in Ontario. At the conference, the society explained, “We want to know what you, the members, think about the idea of transforming OSTD from a provincial entity to a truly pan-Canadian voice for our profession.”
In December, Lynda Trommelen, an Ottawa-based independent training consultant and OSTD board member, told
Canadian HR Reporter
the proposal to go national arose because the society was getting requests to set up chapters in other provinces. Most members work in a corporate setting so many people find themselves being moved around the country.
“What they say is when we worked in Ontario we had this resource and we really got used to it. Can’t you come out here?” she said. “Nothing within our mandate says we can’t do it but it seems rather strange to have a chapter of an Ontario entity in Nunavut. And so it begs the question, ‘Should we become a national (organization?)”
That question was answered on July 1, 2003, when CSTD was officially inaugurated through a national expansion of OSTD.
Jane Stewart, Minister of Human Resources Development, praised the formation of a national body for training and development professionals in a press release issued by CSTD.
“Developing a highly skilled workforce is essential for Canada’s future and a key component of the Government of Canada’s innovation strategy,” said Stewart. “CSTD, an organization dedicated to the profession of training, workplace learning and human resources development, has an important role to play. It’s an organization I look forward to working with in the coming months.”