Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe

Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe

Expert on Resiliency and Workplace Wellness

Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe is a multi-award-winning psychology and education instructor who specializes in resiliency, navigating stress and change, and personal wellness in the workplace. Described as transformational, engaging, and thought-provoking, Hanley-Dafoe’s keynotes provide practical strategies, grounded in global research and case studies, that help foster resiliency within ourselves and others.

As the senior educational developer for the Centre for Teaching and Learning at Trent University, Hanley-Dafoe focuses on providing professional development for the teaching community and cultivating student engagement. She is committed to finding innovative solutions for creating positive learning relationships and environments for both students and teachers. Hanley-Dafoe has also been a psychology instructor and researcher at Trent for more than 13 years.

Hanley-Dafoe’s work is inspired by her interest in resiliency and wellness including the intersections of stress, optimal challenge, navigating change, goal-setting, and personal alignment.


Everyday Resiliency Through Optimal Stress, Personal Alignment and Purpose: How to Show Up and Make it Work for You

This keynote introduces the concept of resiliency from a broad worldview that incorporates five key areas. Sharing from Robyne’s experiences traveling around the globe, Robyne reviews what people have in common that contributes to resiliency, and what we can do in our own lives to foster resiliency within others and ourselves. Robyne’s talk highlights practical strategies and ideas grounded in optimal stress, value alignment, practical focus and the importance of continued goal setting. Using narrative pedagogy, Robyne’s talk shares candid encounters with resiliency that are research informed and readily available to all of us.

Keynote Embedded Active Learning Suite of Offerings:
Embedded within the keynote, and positioned by the pedagogy of active learning, Robyne can lead the participants through guided exercises. As time permits, one or more can be selected. Exercises usually take 5-10 minutes and require participants to have paper and writing utensils or a writing device.

1. Values & Triggers: Optimizing how to perform and produce with competing demands and priorities.
2. How the 5% actually meet their goals: Using SMART-O formula and battle boards.
3. Healthy Habits: How to make common sense into common practice.
4. How Mirco Moments Create Leaders: Building trust and having difficult conversations.
5. Priority Management: Personal and professional alignment: How to make what matters most, matter most.

Learning Outcome:
Participants in the keynote will have the opportunity to engage in meaningful and applied ways of knowing that are based on research informed practices of resiliency and resourcefulness. There will be elements of structured reflection and dialoguing.

Personal Alignment: Balancing and Enjoying Life with Work

This presentation introduces the concept of self-identity and the many roles we hold as professionals, while also maintaining and nurturing our personal roles such as partners, parents, care givers and friends. Based on research, this session explores how professionals, entrepreneurs, business owners, educators, and even cooperate executives can successfully build boundaries and self-care, with productivity. Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe will explore the benefits and challenges of holding professional roles while sharing practical and sustainable best practices for striking this ever-elusive balance. Robyne uses her Top 10 Tips for ‘Life with Work Balance’ that are research informed and readily available to all of us. Here, participants will learn how to transform common knowledge into common practice. Robyne’s talk shares candid encounters with personal value identifiers and how practical practices can promote healthy habits and deep joy in your work through the fostering a steadfast sense of personal alignment and purpose with our work.

Inclusive Leadership: A Place and Voice at the Table

Workforces are welcoming a vista of employees from diverse backgrounds and age demographics. Learning how to create a culture of authentic inclusion is imperative for organizational success. Inclusive Leadership incorporates the practice of assuring that all team members feel as though they belong, that they are respected and are being treated fairly. It is important they everyone has not only a seat at the table, but a voice that is valued. Researchers Espedido and Bourke (2019) presented a framework for organizations to foster inclusive thinking and cultures. The following is a brief summary of each of the six traits of inclusive leaders:

  • Visible commitment: Leaders take action for true inclusion, not just tokenism or politeness. Leaders publicly acknowledge the importance of creating a diverse workplace.
  • Humility: Leaders demonstrate a growth mindset. They recognize they may have some learning to do about welcoming people from diverse backgrounds.
  • Awareness of bias: They show awareness of personal blind spots. They take the time to explore their privilege and the impacts.
  • Curiosity about others: They demonstrate an open mindset and deep curiosity about others. They show a genuine interest in learning with and from others.
  • Cultural intelligence: They are attentive to others’ cultures and adapt as required. Leaders move away from the idea that their respective culture is the norm and the new culture needs to assimilate.
  • Effective collaboration: They empower others by paying attention to diversity and individual safety. Leaders prioritize team cohesion and effectiveness.

In this presentation, we will review the inclusive leadership framework and explore how leaders can promote and foster inclusive behaviours and practices that promote team effectiveness and productivity. We will review how leaders can monitor their inclusive leadership footprint and check for impact. Participants will also learn about the behaviour change protocol and how to use this protocol to change and adapt their behaviours.

How to Transition Resilient Practices into Committed Action

In this keynote and workshop, Robyne introduces the concept of resiliency from a broad worldview that incorporates five key areas that are informed by research. Sharing from Robyne’s experiences traveling the globe, and from working with diverse groups ranging from health care to education, to front line workers, leaders, families, athletes to organizational giants, Robyne reviews what people have in common that contributes to resiliency through narrative pedagogy.

The workshop then dives deeper into the concepts of everyday resiliency by providing space and opportunities for participants to reflect, forecast, plan, and enact. The aim of this session is to learn the skills sets and micro behaviours that promote resilient practices that foster the capacity for resiliency within others and ourselves. The building from the keynote, the workshop explores the ever-elusive balance of managing competing demands, stress, pressures, and responsibilities, while also looking after one’s self.

Robyne’s work highlights practical strategies and ideas grounded in optimal stress, value alignment, attunement and the importance of continued goal setting and committed action. Robyne will also share candid encounters with resiliency that are research informed and readily available to all of us.

Everyday Resiliency in Ever-Changing Times

With stress, uncertainty, and unrest at a record high, Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe’s message is both inspirational and practical. She introduces her “Five Pillars of Resiliency”, and shares strategies to help foster each pillar in ourselves and others based on research-informed best practices and real-world applications.

This interactive and engaging presentation helps participants regain a sense of order in ever-changing times and learn how to establish new daily routines to increase productivity and decrease anxiety.

Audiences will learn:

  • How to increase focus while navigating competing demands.
  • How to adjust to new life and work routines.
  • How to revisit and reaffirm values and priorities.
  • How to decrease stress during uncertainty.
  • How to increase healthy habits and productivity.

This virtual presentation can be 45-60 minutes long and include both a keynote as well as audience interaction via polling or Q&A. Length is customizable depending on client’s need.

Leading Through the Storm

In this virtual session designed specifically for leaders, Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe explores what staff and teams need in order to get through uncertain and difficult times.

Drawing on her resiliency framework, Hanley-Dafoe explains how to promote and foster resilient practices within your staff and organization and cultivate a workplace culture of community, connection, and engagement that promotes productivity and purposefulness. Hanley-Dafoe will present current research on stress and performance and explain how leaders can mediate distress.

Audiences will learn:

  • How to identify and address stress behaviour compared to misbehaviour.
  • Tactical strategies for moving people through the stages of change with goal setting.
  • How to use this moment to create the “big opportunity” and make significant, sustainable, and meaningful change.

This virtual presentation can be 45-60 minutes long and include both a keynote as well as audience interaction via polling or Q&A. Length is customizable depending on client’s need.

Personal Alignment: Balancing and Enjoying Life with Work

Exploring the concept of self-identity and the many roles we hold both personally and professionally, this session examines how we can all successfully build boundaries and set strategies for self-care while maintaining productivity.

Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe will share practical and sustainable best practices for striking the ever-elusive work-life balance. Participants will explore personal value identifiers and learn practices that promote healthy habits and foster deep joy through aligning our work with purpose and personal values.

This virtual presentation can be 45-60 minutes long and include both a keynote as well as audience interaction via polling or Q&A. Length is customizable depending on client’s need.

Inclusive Leadership: A Place and Voice at the Table

Learning how to create a culture of authentic inclusion is imperative for organizational success in today’s diverse workplaces. Inclusive leadership incorporates the practice of assuring that all team members feel as though they belong, that they are respected, and are being treated fairly.

In this presentation, Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe will review the inclusive leadership framework and explore:

  • How leaders can promote and foster inclusive behaviours and practices that promote team effectiveness and productivity.
  • How leaders can monitor their inclusive leadership footprint and check for impact.
  • The behaviour change protocol and how to use this protocol to change and adapt behaviours.

This virtual presentation can be 45-60 minutes long and include both a keynote as well as audience interaction via polling or Q&A. Length is customizable depending on client’s need.

How to Transition Resilient Practices into Committed Action

In this keynote and workshop, Dr. Robyne Hanley-Dafoe draws on her experiences traveling the globe and working with diverse groups of people, ranging from health care professionals to educators, front line workers to leaders, families to organizational giants. She reviews what traits resilient people have in common, and how we can build and strengthen these qualities in ourselves and others.

This workshop dives deeper into the concepts of everyday resiliency, providing space and opportunities for participants to reflect, forecast, plan, and enact. The aim of this session is to learn the skill sets and micro behaviours that promote and foster resiliency. It also explores the difficult balance of managing competing demands, stress, pressures, and responsibilities, while also looking after one’s self.

This virtual presentation can be 45-60 minutes long and include both a keynote as well as audience interaction via polling or Q&A. Length is customizable depending on client’s need.