ABOVE THE FOLD We have introduced features such as low-flow faucets and energy recovery ventilation, which have become standard in all new projects. Existing stores’ performance is improved by large scale retrofit programs where, for example, stores receive the latest lighting technology. In this way, we keep evolving our stores for optimized environmental performance. For example, emissions from our SportChek stores decreased 9% year-over-year in 2019.
What trends are you seeing and what opportunities do you see ahead?
We are continuing to look for opportunities to improve and evaluate how we design; construct and even how we work. COVID-19 has and will continue to change the way we go about our lives. As we are continually learning about this, we are seeing new trends around health, safety and cleanliness. These are now at the forefront of everything we do moving forward to keep our customers and our employees safe. There is a new expectation from customers around seamless integration of online channels and technology. In-store technology that explains products by scanning QR codes, screens and AR will become standard in many customer interactions. With customer behaviors shifting, stores need to have the flexibility to adapt and support change through fixtures, visuals and/or
audio messaging. Stores are also becoming micro—distribution hubs to accommodate the online and in store pickup demand. We are noticing the use of Antimicrobial Materials. These are being used on high touch and transmission surfaces. More retailers are looking at incorporating materials that are both functional, practical and esthetically pleasing. In the face of adversity, there is always opportunity. As we navigate through everchanging consumer behaviors, we are constantly learning and growing to become better. It’s important that we continuously evaluate our internal processes and adapt to new technologies that will improve our customer journey. I always say it’s important to identify our strengths, but it’s just as important to know our weaknesses.
What’s the biggest item on your to-do list right now?
One of my main priorities is ensuring that my team is engaged, motivated and healthy, all while identifying opportunities to come out of this pandemic stronger than before. As a leader, I want to ensure that my team not only has the resources and tools they need to continue to perform at their job, but that they feel supported emotionally on a day-to-day basis. CCR
ONE-ON-ONE WITH... Deborah Delaney, AVP Design & Construction
What’s the most rewarding part of your job? The opportunity to hire and mentor an all-female management team in an industry that is historically predominantly male. We are a niche team within the Canadian Tire family of companies and act as a bifurcated group supporting both the Mark’s and SportChek banners. Seeing each project from beginning to end, with
oversight of everything from planning to design, construction, fixture procurement and development, gives me and the team a strong sense of collective accomplishment.
What was the best advice you ever received? That it’s essential to create and foster a learning culture within your team.
Name the three strongest traits any leader should have and why. 1. Integrity: a gateway for trust, loyalty and openness.
What’s the best thing a client ever said to you? The best thing a client ever said to me is that I have never under promised or under delivered.
2. Self-awareness: understanding the characteristics and perspective of servant leadership.
How do you like to spend your down time? COVID-19 has taught me that I don’t need to get on a plane and “get away from it all” to find peace. It has taught me to find balance in my daily schedule and enjoy every day simple pleasures in my own backyard.
3. A bility to successfully create a learning culture: it’s important to understand our weaknesses and grow.
COMMERCIAL CONSTRUCTION & RENOVATION — DECEMBER 2020