Behind the Bubble with Monica Bolland

For Monica Bolland, lifelong learning is fundamental to both her business and her personal life.

An effectiveness consultant for both individuals and teams, and a parent of four, Monica defines effectiveness as “making sure that you’re doing what’s aligned with the goals that you’ve set for yourself,” although she also says that effectiveness can look different depending on the individual. Her work also emphasizes not wasting one’s time or energy and seeing the value in the work you’re doing – no matter what it is.

“I might be just a cog on a wheel, but what part of that cog am I moving? How do I fit into the organization? How do I fit into my life?” she says, highlighting the importance of individuals within organizational structures.

One element of her work in effectiveness consulting is creating different environments to help teams explore communication and planning. To do this, she employs immersive experiential techniques such as having clients work with Play-Doh, empathy toys, or Lego. This method allows her clients to develop their own strategies for effective communication within the framework she’s set up.

“The less talking I do in a training program, the better the success of that program,” she laughs.

The topic of Monica’s own focus and learning recently is behavioural economics, or how emotional, cultural, psychological, social, and other factors influence human decision-making. Besides constantly learning for self-improvement and gaining new perspectives, she also incorporates her learning into her work.

“If I have something that I think I can fit into my work, I will explore that,” she says.

“Sometimes that takes me down some rabbit holes.”

She is currently working on developing her own program that incorporates skills she’s learned in both her professional and personal lives, with a focus on communication and growth mindsets.

Like many others, Monica found herself having to pivot her work because of the pandemic. The hands-on experiential techniques she favours weren’t possible to do online, with teams separated, so she had to change her approach.

“Because my work was so involved with individual teams, when the pandemic hit and you weren’t allowed to meet anymore, I could have said ‘Okay, I’ll go on sabbatical and do something else’,” she said.

The “need to keep her brain going” led her to embrace the idea that online interactions can be just as powerful and meaningful as in-person ones.

For Monica, as both a Bubble host and participant, the online interactions in Focus Bubbles have also been meaningful. Meanwhile, the Bubbles themselves have allowed her to “plan to procrastinate” by planning and managing her time effectively.

Whether working, at home, or in a Bubble, Monica is most proud of her ability to embrace change when situations are thrust upon her or opportunities come up.

“I may be afraid to embrace it. But I do.”

Monica’s Profile



Emilie Charette

I’m a full-time university student, part-time Focus Bubbles host, and part-time D&D dungeon master. When I’m not doing interviews, I love meeting new people, hearing their stories, and getting new perspectives on life. I can’t wait to see you in a Bubble!

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