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CANADIANSME ISSUEE 8 JULY 2019

Empowering Canadian Small & Medium Businesses

BUSINESS CHAT Discussing business priorities with Madeleine Chenette

BUSINESSWOMAN OF THE MONTH Marie Chevrier

Office Managing Director, Montreal, Accenture

CEO and Founder of Sampler

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Shaping up Southern Ontario's business landscape James Meddings

Grow Your Business By Growing Your Brand Community Wayne S Roberts

President, Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario

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President and Chief Creative Officer at Blade Creative Branding Inc.

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WELCOME The heat is on and the small business industry is in full bloom. With more SMEs being launched on a daily basis more than ever before, CanadianSME is also growing. We’re proud to say that we’ve seen a huge increase in our network. Our social media following and our subscription list is rapidly increasing. This July issue is full of promise and exciting new articles and interviews. CanadianSME is well on its way to being the number one magazine and online platform for small and medium-sized enterprises in Canada. Dedicated to providing entrepreneurs with as many resources and expert knowledge they need to succeed in the business industry, our team goes out of its way to find topics and inspirational people in the business industry to feature in our magazine. CanadianSME is on a mission to grow the small business industry and making Canada the number one country with the largest SME industry. These facts go to show the impact that the small business industry has on the community. Not only are they contributing towards the growth and development of Canada’s economy, but they’re also creating new jobs for Canadians. In the July edition of CanadianSME, we’re excited to feature innovative leaders that are shaping the world of business. This issue includes interviews from Madeleine Chenette of Accenture, Eric Groves from Alignable, Perrin Beatty of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Colin McIsaac of Lenovo Canada on the cover of this month’s issue, and of course, our businesswoman of the month Marie Chevrier, founder of Sampler. We also have Laura Williams from Williams HR Law as a contributor this month. Be sure to check out her article on employment relationships. With the huge positive impact that SMEs have on the country, there’s never been a more crucial time for an online platform that can help provide resources and informative articles to help contribute towards the success of small businesses. CanadianSME is aiming to be the main resource for entrepreneurs when it comes to guiding them on their path of success. With the help of our contributors and readers, we are one step closer to achieving this goal. We hope this month CanadianSME will provide you with valuable information to help you in the success of your business.

CANADIANSME Empowering Canadian Small & Medium Businesses

www.canadiansme.ca info@canadiansme.ca canadiansme canadian_sme canadiansme

Publisher Shaik Khaleeluddin (SK)

Webmaster Ashraf

Consulting Editor Victoria Marcelle

Social Media Cmarketing Inc

Creative Designer Abdhesh Kr. Jha

Cover Photography Ahsan Khan 416 617 3058

Contributors Colin McIsaac Dan Kelly Perrin Beatty Madeleine Chenette Laura Williams Marie Chevrier Eric Groves

Erica Hakonson Hiren Prabhakar James Meddings Amadou Tall Steve Tallis Wayne S Roberts

Armando Iannuzzi Alejandro Adem Chris Coghlan Gautam Lohia

For Advertisements: info@canadiansme.ca For Distribution Enquiries: CMarketing Inc. 2355 Derry Road E, Unit 27 | Mississauga, ON | L5S 1V6 Phone: 416 6550 205, 647 668 5785

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ISSN (International Standard Serial Number) ISSN 2562-0649 (Print) ISSN 2562-0657 (Online)

Published by CMarketing Inc. 2355 Derry Road E, Unit 27 | Mississauga, ON | L5S 1V6. Copyright © 2019 CMarketing Inc. All rights reserved. Reproduction in whole or part of any text, photography or illustrations without written permission from the publisher is prohibited.

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The contents in CanadianSME Magazine are for informational purposes only. Neither Cmarketing, the publishers nor any of its partners, employees or affiliates accepts any liability whatsoever for any direct or consequential loss arising from any use of its contents.


Regulars

CONTENTS

23 28 29

18

BUSINESS CHAT Discussing business priorities with Madeleine Chenette

10

EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH COLIN MCISAAC Lenovo resurgence in the Canadian SME Market

32 34 35

24

EXCLUSIVE CHAT Shaping up Southern Ontario's business landscape James Meddings

42 43 46 48 50

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BUSINESS BRANDING Grow Your Business By Growing Your Brand Community

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BUSINESSWOMAN OF THE MONTH Marie Chevrier CEO and Founder of Sampler

BUSINESS R&D

How to maximize R&D budgets and de-risk innovation

SMALL BUSINESS

Time to celebrate the spouses behind Canadian SMEs

SMALL BUSINESS OWNERS

Sustainability is a Non-Negotiable for Next Gen Small Business Owners

WORKPLACE Published Study Demonstrates Positive Clinical and Workplace Outcomes, Including Mental Health Improvements, as a Result of External Employee Assistance Program vs. Control Group BUSINESS SERVICES

Staples Canada Launches Solutionshop, an Innovative Approach to Design, Printing, Marketing, Shipping and Tech Services

EMPLOYEE RELATIONSHIP

It takes two: Why organizations need to build balance into their employment relationships

BUSINESS PHONE

Top 5 Best Phone Plans for Your Business

BUSINESS Becoming Your Own Boss ESTATE PLANNING

If effective estate planning is a must for any entrepreneur, why are so many unprepared?

STARTUP

Starting Up? Have a Day One Growth Mindset

EMPLOYMENT UPDATE

Canada's job vacancies rate sets new record: 435,000 jobs go unfilled in Q1 2019


Contributors:

COLIN MCISAAC

Executive Director & General Manager Lenovo Canada As Lenovo’s General Manager of Canada, Colin is responsible for sales, operations, culture, strategy and customer satisfaction of the region. He has overall P&L responsibility for Commercial, SMB and Consumer products through all major routes to market. Colin’s 23 years of experience spans multiple roles, opportunities and experiences in the technology business. He has held numerous key leadership positions in both Canada and US at both Lenovo and IBM. He is passionate about driving broad market engagement and has a strong desire to help enable the customer journey to successful business outcomes.

DAN KELLY

President & Chief Executive Officer-CFIB Dan Kelly serves as President, Chief Executive Officer and Chair of the Board of Governors of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).

MADELEINE CHENETTE

Office Managing Director, Montreal, Accenture

Colin has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Toronto, Canada and sits on the Board of the Information Technology Association of Canada (ITAC) and First Robotics Canada.

Chenette joins Accenture from KPMG Canada, where she led the strategy service line for the past four years. She has more than 22 years of consulting experience with clients across a wide range of industries, including retail, consumer goods, communication, transport, finance and the public sector. Chenette has served as the chair of the board of SECOR Group, an international strategy and management consulting firm, and as a board member of Transat A.T. Inc., an integrated tour operator.

JAMES MEDDINGS

Chenette was named to the list of Canada's Most Powerful Women: Top 100 in 2012 by the Women's Executive Network, and was recognized by the Association of Quebec Women in Finance in 2011 and 2013. A certified corporate director, Chenette holds a Master of Science and Administration (M.Sc.) degree from École des Hautes Études Commerciales.

President, Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario

MARIE CHEVRIER CEO and Founder of Sampler Marie Chevrier, is the CEO and Founder of Sampler - the leading direct to consumer sampling platform. Marie founded Sampler with a vision to transform the way consumer packaged goods companies distribute product samples and though it started small, Sampler has grown quickly into a booming digital business. Today, her company has been listed as one of Canada’s Fastest Growing startups by Canadian Business and Growth 500 and has received investment from the world’s biggest global beauty manufacturer, L’Oréal. Sampler has worked with some of the top CPG brands in the world like: Unilever, Henkel, Mondelez International, and Kimberly-Clark reaching over 50 million consumers globally in 17 different countries.

PERRIN BEATTY

President & CEO Canadian Chamber of Commerce The Honourable Perrin Beatty is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the 200,000-member Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Canada’s largest and most representative national business association.

James Meddings was appointed President of the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) on October 31, 2016. James served as Assistant Deputy Minister of Policy and Strategic Direction at Western Economic Diversification from 2011- 2016 and Vice President, Individual Learning and later Vice President, Organizational Leadership at the Canada School of Public Service from 2006 to 2011.

LAURA WILLIAMS

ERIC GROVES

Williams HR Law

CEO & Co-Founder of Alignable

As the founder and principal of Williams HR Law Professional Corporation and Williams HR Consulting Inc., Laura boasts more than two decades of experience providing strategic advice and legal representation to employers on a full range of labour and employment law matters.

Eric Groves is CEO and co-founder of Alignable.com, the largest online network of small business owners with over 3.5 million members across 30,000 communities in North America.


Contributors:

ERICA HAKONSON Principal & B2B Marketing Maven at Maven Collective Marketing Erica Hakonson, Principal of Maven Collective Marketing, has likely spent more time pondering, testing and contemplating your web searches than you will ever be comfortable knowing about. For 13+ years, she has been working in B2B marketing with companies like the Microsoft Corporation, Safeco Insurance, BONZAI Intranet and many more to disrupt the norm, connecting people-to-people rather than business-to-business. Established in 2012, Maven Collective Marketing is the trusted digital marketing agency and partner to B2B software and B2B software services companies to help organizations thrive in the oversaturated marketplace of B2B software sameness.

STEVE TALLIS

Co-founder of Starks Barber Company Steve Tallis is the co-founder of Starks Barber Company, a chain of barber shops he launched in 2013 with a childhood friend. The concept was ‘a modern take on the traditional barber shop’ and has since evolved into locations across the GTA. In 2016 they launched Starks Gentlemen’s Supply; a line of premium men’s grooming products that are made in Canada.

ALEJANDRO ADEM CEO and Scientific Director of Mitacs Alejandro Adem is CEO and Scientific Director of Mitacs, a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada. As CEO of Mitacs, Adem has overseen an unprecedented expansion of its programs, with the goal of delivering 10,000 research-based internships annually across Canada and abroad by 2020.

CHRIS COGHLAN Co-Founder at Apply Digital

HIREN PRABHAKAR

General Manager of the Toronto Marriott Markham In the world of hospitality, Hiren Prabhakar has seen it all. A globetrotting GM with an impressive resume of launching luxury properties in countries as diverse as Russia, Zambia, and Dubai, Mr. Prabhakar has built a storied career off a knack for motivating his teams to deliver on a cohesive vision. He credits his success – which defies borders and language – to a commitment towards immersion: immersion within the company culture, yes, but also a profound respect for the cultures in which his properties have earned guest loyalty.

WAYNE S ROBERTS

President and Chief Creative Officer at Blade Creative Branding Inc. Characterized by the Globe and Mail as "an ad industry provocateur," Wayne brings more than 25 years of awardwinning experience in strategic branding, creative advertising and innovative online solutions to Blade's clients. He has “columned” for Canadian Business magazine, and been featured in the Globe and Mail, Marketing & Strategy magazines. He has been interviewed on Global TV and Radio Canada, commenting on modern branding issues.

Chris Coghlan, leads global business development with a goal to uncover the best opportunities for his team to apply their craft. He brings strong marketing, product and digital thought leadership to Apply. Before Apply, Chris was co-founder & CEO of Blitzoo Interactive, a digital product development firm that was acquired in February 2016. Prior to that, Chris was EVP Client Development for Blast Radius where he helped forge long-term partnerships with some of the world’s strongest brands.

GAUTAM LOHIA Co-founder Apply Digital

AMADOU TALL

Director of Entandem

Amadou Tall is Director of Entandem, a new company jointly owned by RE:SOUND and SOCAN that ensures that music creators and publishers are compensated for the use of their music in public through simplified licensing. Music license payments are returned to music creators and publishers in the form of royalties, ensuring that more music can be created.

ARMANDO IANNUZZI

Tax Partner at KRP Armando Iannuzzi is a tax partner at KRP LLP, a Markham, Ont.-based accounting firm for entrepreneurs. Learn more at www.krp.ca

Gautam Lohia, oversees client management and operations at Apply. He loves building technologies, teams and partnerships. As a passionate but softspoken leader, Gautam is always ready to roll up his sleeves and guide his team through the most challenging situations. Gautam believes successful products focus on providing results rather than features.


FedEx Awards $100,000 in Cash and Prizes to

Top Ten Winners of its Annual Canadian Small Business Grant Contest Wabanaki Maple Products Wins Grand Prize of $30,000, Plus $10,000 in Marketing and Consulting Services and a Meeting with FedEx Express Canada President, Lisa Lisson

FedEx Express Canada, a subsidiary of FedEx Corp. (NYSE: FDX), announced today that Wabanaki Maple Products – a heritage maple syrup company from Negotuk (Tobique First Nation), New Brunswick – is the grand prize winner of the second FedEx Small Business Grant Contest in Canada. Wabanaki Maple will receive a $30,000 CAD grant, plus a meeting with FedEx Express Canada President, Lisa Lisson, and a brand marketing workshop ($10,000 CAD estimated value). Wabanaki Maple proudly provides a taste of Indigenous culture through its sustainably sourced maple syrup products. Their authentic syrups put a twist on a familiar taste as they are aged in Bourbon, Whiskey, or Toasted Oak barrels. "FedEx Express Canada was inspired by Wabanaki's approach to helping Canadians reconnect with our roots in a unique and sustainable way," said Lisa Lisson, President at FedEx Express Canada. "As one of the most traditional offerings of our land, maple syrup is woven throughout our history, and we're committed to helping Wabanaki continue to tell those stories." "We are incredibly proud to be named this year's Canadian FedEx Small Business Grant Contest grand prize winner," said Jolene Laskey, business owner of Wabanaki Maple. "This grant will help us invest in more tools to help with

syrup production and more marketing resources to spread this sweet piece of culture to more people across the country and around the world."

and entrepreneurial spirit of Canada's small business community as well as the values of FedEx Express Canada."

In addition to the grand prize, FedEx also awarded Acre75.ca – an online shop based in Milverton, Ontario, that sells handcrafted goods from small Canadian towns – $15,000 CAD plus a brand marketing workshop ($5,000 CAD estimated value). The following eight businesses received $5,000 grants: (listed in alphabetical order)

This year's contest garnered almost 2,000 entries and more than 273,000 votes. Originally launched in the U.S., the FedEx Small Business Grant Contest expanded to reach customers in other countries, with programs in Brazil, France, Germany, Hong Kong, India, China, Italy, Singapore, and the UK.

• • • • • • • •

Fern and Moon (Vancouver, B.C.) Honeybee Hub Inc. (Toronto, ON) Little Elska (Arborg, MB) Michael Difazio Reclaim Artistry (Windsor, ON) Okanagan Lavender and Herb Farm (Kelowna, B.C.) Toni Marlow Clothing (Toronto, ON) Veille Sur Toi Inc. (Laval, QC) Yes Crickets (Owen Sound, ON)

"We were impressed to see the significant role e-commerce is playing in helping many small Canadian businesses, regardless of the service or product they provide, expand their customer base across the country and often outside of Canada as well," said Ann-Marie McIntosh, vice president of Marketing, Communications and Customer Experience, FedEx Express Canada. "We are proud to present and celebrate our ten deserving winners, who represent the talent

Finding Solutions for Your Business – FedEx Small Business Centre The FedEx portfolio of services allows small businesses to gain access to the global marketplace and to shipping and logistics solutions. For more information on how FedEx helps small businesses, please visit the FedEx Small Business Centre at www.fedex.ca/ smallbusiness.

About FedEx Express FedEx Express is one of the world's largest express transportation companies, providing fast and reliable delivery to more than 220 countries and territories. FedEx Express uses a global air and ground network to speed delivery of time-sensitive shipments, by a definite time and date with a money-back guarantee. SOURCE FedEx Express Canada CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

COLIN MCISAAC

Executive Director & General Manager Lenovo Canada

Lenovo resurgence in the Canadian SME Market

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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

As Lenovo’s General Manager of Canada, Colin is responsible for sales, operations, culture, strategy and customer satisfaction of the region. He has overall P&L responsibility for Commercial, SMB and Consumer products through all major routes to market. Colin’s 23 years of experience spans multiple roles, opportunities and experiences in the technology business. He has held numerous key leadership positions in both Canada and US at both Lenovo and IBM. He is passionate about driving broad market engagement and has a strong desire to help enable the customer journey to successful businessoutcomes. Colin has a Bachelor of Commerce degree from the University of Toronto, Canada and sits on the Board of the Information Technology Association of Canada (ITAC) and First Robotics Canada.

"Lenovo-assisted end-user relationships. This effort has brought together many areas our business including: marketing, operations, customer data, client engagement and channel partnership. It has also meant a renewed value proposition that strikes a chord with SME prospects."

Can you start with telling me more about your career and how you started with Lenovo? My career started at IBM in 1997. I was a business school graduate from the University of Toronto. From there, I was fortunate enough to have my first position in a finance role at IBM. It was a fantastic opportunity to learn the technology business and after a few years I decided to switch from a finance role to sales. I haven't looked back since. My experience in sales ranges from sales individual, to sales management, to executive management and now currently I’m the General Manager for Lenovo Canada. This role has responsibility for our personal computer and data center businesses along with related services and software. Lenovo has made quite the comeback in recent years and distinguished itself as a strong contender when it comes to the small and medium sized businesses. What do you believe is the reason behind this turnaround? Yes, absolutely! Traditionally, we’ve had a strong legacy of success in Canada in which we are very proud. We are well represented in larger organizations, such as banks, telco, insurance and large government entities. This is a direct result of our heritage in Canada and continues to be an important part of our business. To realize the full value of our business opportunity, however, we began to turn our attention to other market segments - including the SME market. Within SME, we are taking the approach of augmenting our strong channel relationships with defined, Lenovo-assisted end-user relationships. This effort has brought together many areas our business including: marketing, operations, customer data, client engagement and channel partnership. It has also meant a renewed value proposition that strikes a chord with SME prospects. This value proposition tries to address a fundamental question of “will they (SME) see value in what we bring?” We think the answer is Yes. As a result of our focus, we are well on our way to increasing the amount of Lenovo SME end-users in Canada. Lenovo’s ultimate goal is to bring technology value to more and more people and businesses. Lenovo already had a strong reputation in the enterprise and public sector. Why go into the SME industry? What was the deciding factor to tackle that sector?

there is around 5,000,000+ PC's sold in Canada annually, with 50 per cent belonging to the commercial market. Within that market, there is an even split between large enterprises and SMEs. That’s a very clear statistic that can’t be ignored and makes sense to focus on from a business equation perspective. More importantly, however, is the fact that we have such an established and strong value proposition in the commercial landscape. We built our reputation through our ThinkPad legacy and with it, developed a very strong and loyal customer base. We have a great story and products that are innovative - bringing the best quality and reliability and overall experience. We strive to improve our products on a daily basis and continue to help businesses succeed worldwide. So why would we privilege that only to the very large businesses? How has entering the small business industry affected Lenovo? The “go-to-market” strategy has certainly been different when approaching the SME market and overall it has been a very positive journey. It has helped us to move at a much faster pace considering there are less layers of decision makers. It’s also been very important to be more engaged with the decision makers and provide them with more options. Additionally, it has also helped shape Lenovo’s culture. We have shifted from only focusing though a large business lens to broadening our view to encompass SME. These learnings influence product design, introduce new solutions, offer different services and enable new partnerships. SME customers want organizations that are easy to do business, creative, and always available and Lenovo is evolving to deliver on this experience. The results have been tremendous. We grew 29 per cent in the Canadian SME market at the close of our last fiscal year on March 31. In addition, all three segments of our business Large Enterprise, SME and Consumer have contributed to Lenovo becoming number one in the PC business in Canada for the first time ever, according to the IDC. We started this journey in 2005, when Lenovo bought the assets of an IBM PC organization and in the last 14 years, we have never achieved number one status in a quarter of business. As a result of years of efforts, we have just reached this milestone.

International Data Corporation (IDC) tells us that CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

"The “go-to-market” strategy has certainly been different when approaching the SME market and overall it has been a very positive journey. It has helped us to move at a much faster pace considering there are less layers of decision makers. It’s also been very important to be more engaged with the decision makers and provide them with more options. "

Entering the SME industry contributed greatly. It's helped us evolve our business and culture. It also has had a significant impact on our supply chain, our marketing organization, and our product development organization as we start to look at this part of our market a lot differently than what we had previously. What is the number one benefit of entrepreneurs using Lenovo? How can it help them run their business successfully? Entrepreneurs are looking for a faster time to value? because they don't have the luxury of time to mull over and make decisions that larger organizations may have. Entrepreneurs want to surround themselves with organizations that can provide fast value for them in a quick and efficient manner. That is why it’s essential to 12

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always be available, accessible via mobile, and providing the most amount of value. We have become very knowledgeable about the business community and can anticipate upcoming needs. That’s why we offer fast value though a diverse portfolio of devices and services. Our line of ThinkPads include leading technologies such as extended battery life (up to 15 hours), RapidCharge technology, and optional multi-touch screens. We have built on our ThinkPad legacy and have now introduced the ThinkBook – which serves small-to-medium businesses. We also go beyond personal PCs and offer datacenter, cloud, services and security solutions. Our security solutions are an area that we are

really excited about at the moment! We recently launched a campaign for our ThinkShield with Olivia Munn, who happens to be a tech investor. With ThinkShield, entrepreneurs can completely customize end-to-end protection that secures their business based on their specific needs. Datacentre and Cloud technology is something that we’re very proud to offer. Our infrastructure products and engineered solutions, combined with our Lenovo professional services, can deliver every aspect of an entrepreneur’s cloud transformation project. Lenovo offers customized, simplified, and turnkey cloud solutions – ThinkAgile CP composable cloud, ThinkAgile SXM solutions for Azure and ThinkAgile solutions for Nutanix, to name just a few.


EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

What sets Lenovo apart from other similar companies? Why should SME owners choose Lenovo as opposed to another brand? There are probably a lot of adjectives I could provide. From a pure PC perspective, our business is, in my opinion, the most innovative of all the major PCs in the market. Innovation is our core business and livelihood. It is what people first identify with as they engage with Lenovo and is evidenced through the myriad of technologies and innovations that we have brought to market over the years. While we continue to lead here, now, we can offer very compelling data center organization as we look to drive our value proposition beyond PC into cloud-based, private and public solutions. The other biggest differentiator is how easy it is to do business with us. You can buy from one of our resellers either over the telephone or online. We are not always perfect but from a trust perspective, we are quite high up in people's evaluation. What is the best Lenovo product for SME owners who are in the start-up phase of their business? We provide solutions anywhere from the data center all the way to the pants pocket. For an early to mid-start up business that’s looking to evolve or build up their infrastructure, I would say you need a really good laptop. The ThinkBook is a great option that fits into this market very well. If you are looking to buy the best, I would recommend our X1 carbon. This is not just a product relationship, it extends beyond product in the SME space to more of a lifecycle offering. With Lenovo and our resellers, there’s an ability to turn a capital payment into operating, creating a monthly payment for the utility of the product over a life cycle. The ultimate goal is to provide the most flexibility and the most value to our clients in all stages of their lifecycle. What has been the biggest accomplishment of Lenovo since targeting the SME industry? We are most proud of our clients that come back and say, “thank you for helping my business and for this amazing relationship we have with Lenovo”. Those are the things that all Lenovo employees get excited about! When you survey your clients and continuously see 10/10 results, we know we are doing our job well, and get excited to do even better. Providing the best customer experience is

integral to our business in Canada and Lenovo Canada consistently receives a very high rating. This is a testament to the great relationships we have fostered with clients over the years and proves that the hard work and constant desire for bigger and better innovation and experience is worth it. What are some of the future projects or initiatives that Lenovo has planned that can benefit small and medium sized business owners? There are quite a few. We have our ThinkBook, which is a purpose-built product for SMEs. The device is well-stocked with an innovatie design and attractive price. It backs up with the power and support that is expected of Lenovo. In addition, the ThinkBook has rapid response with Windows Modern Standby that brings smartphone connectivity to a business laptop – the device can download emails, receive Skype call alerts and get app updates, even with the lid closed. The ThinkBook also comes with business-grade support and built-in self-management features. We also focus on continually looking for additional program offerings and flexibility around financing relationships. This gives SMEs the ability to manage their spend appropriately, especially as they scale their business.

We are now also in the office collaboration business! Creating meeting room products that help enable broad based collaboration in all organizations but especially with our turnkey offer in the small and medium businesses more importantly. In addition to other ongoing adjacent technologies, we’re working on edge-based computing. One of our newest offerings in that space is the SE350 - a great server which manages data and analytics at the edge of network, which has great applicability in the SME space. All of this is enhanced by a great reseller business in Canada that can help to provide end-to-end value to SME. What is your final piece of advice to Canadian entrepreneurs when it comes to technology? My advice would be keep looking for the next opportunity to integrate technology into your business as a differentiator. More and more, technology is becoming less about the product or offering and more about what the technology can do for you. Technology strategy is now a key part of the business strategy. Those organizations that are able to leverage this to drive innovation will put themselves in an ideal position to achieve better business outcomes.

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BUSINESS

Make your business

sing with the right music of your customers? Would songs or instrumentals be the better choice? Ask yourself all these questions before you hit the play button.

Imagine the customer experience – in a store, a restaurant, a gym - without music. No toe tapping while picking up groceries, no bass pumping at the beginning of a workout class, no live band at the bar.

AMADOU TALL

Director of Entandem

Amadou Tall is Director of Entandem, a new company jointly owned by RE:SOUND and SOCAN that ensures that music creators and publishers are compensated for the use of their music in public through simplified licensing. Music license payments are returned to music creators and publishers in the form of royalties, ensuring that more music can be created.

We all love music in our everyday lives, but did you know it’s also proven to positively impact how a customer feels about their environment? According to research , the majority of Canadians say they enjoy their shopping experience more when they hear music. Music is an emotionally rooted medium that draws on nostalgia and emotion to create connections with customers quickly. And when it’s not there, we notice.

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But not all music is created equal. You can’t just throw any old tune on and expect the magic to happen. Matching your business to the music you play is essential for success, providing customers with a positive experience while also giving business owners the opportunity to show that they understand them.

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You already know that it is crucial to ensure all aspects of your business are working just as hard as you are, and making the most out of the music you’re playing – including purchasing the licenses required to play music legally – is key to delivering an experience your customers will rave about. Studies show again and again that companies that use music well reap rewards, see increased foot traffic, and experience higher sales. Restaurants benefit from the more than 70 per cent of Canadians who say hearing music in a restaurant makes them more likely to enjoy their meal. More than half of Canadians say they are likely to enjoy their grocery shopping experience more when they hear music.

"Building a business and a brand isn’t easy, but using right type of music with your customers could get you to the next level. The talented artists who made the music deserve to share in your success so that, along with you, they can continue to grow."

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So how do you ensure that the music you're using makes sense? Here are four easy tips:

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Play music that aligns with your brand and the expectations of your customers. If you’re a hip clothing store for teens, classical music most likely isn’t a fit. If the music is too loud for people to engage in conversation, you probably shouldn’t use it in an intimate restaurant. Does your playlist consider the age and demographics

Consider what’s happening outside your business. Is there a seasonal event that’s affiliated with music? Is there a festival or major sports event happening in your city that’s worth tapping into? Christmas, Halloween, playoff season and cultural festivals connect emotionally with customers too, so when it’s a fit, piggyback on them. Ask your staff their opinion and be open to their feedback. Your staff are on the front lines of customer interaction and may be receiving feedback without even realizing it. Ask your staff what they would like to hear or what they think would fit based on their observations. Get licensed. When building your business plan, be sure to account for proper music licenses so that you can use the music you need to build the brand you want. Businesses are required to obtain two separate music licenses, one from RE:SOUND and one from SOCAN, but now you can obtain both through Endandem. Entandem is all about working together to simplify licensing payments for businesses that use music while delivering more to music rights holders to ensure that music creators are legally, fairly and ethically compensated for their copyright work. After all, music creators deserve to be compensated for their work, just like you.

Building a business and a brand isn’t easy, but using the right type of music with your customers could get you to the next level. The talented artists who made the music deserve to share in your success so that, along with you, they can continue to grow. Entandem is a partner with businesses that use music – and together, we can raise the value of music even higher. For further information about Entandem, visit www.EntandemLicensing.com.


VISA AND PAYPAL JOIN FORCES TO ALLOW CONSUMERS AND SMALL BUSINESSES IN CANADA TO ACCESS MONEY FASTER TORONTO – June 26 – Visa and PayPal today launched a feature that allows consumers and small businesses in Canada to instantly access funds. PayPal’s new Instant Transfer, powered by Visa Direct, Visa’s real-time push payments solution, moves money from customers’ PayPal accounts to their bank account via their Visa debit cards – providing an experience that offers speed, security and convenience, 24/7/365. The desire for faster payments is escalating: 60 per cent of consumers report that having funds available more quickly for personal use is a benefit of real-time funds disbursements . For small businesses, the ability to manage cash flow is critical to their growth and success – 85 per cent of small businesses say they would likely switch to a new merchant acquirer who offered real-time payments . “Visa wants to empower consumers and small businesses to be able to move their money where they want, when they want, and how they want,” said Brian Weiner, Vice President & Head of Product, Visa Canada. “Visa Direct is providing millions of Canadians more convenient ways to access their funds, and we are pleased to be partnering with PayPal to bring this capability to our mutual customers.” “At PayPal, we focus on finding solutions that help our customers become more efficient,” said Paul Parisi, President, PayPal Canada. “For our small business customers, faster access to their funds is crucial. Instant Transfer is just one more way we are giving control and flexibility to our customers, allowing them to send and spend their money on their own terms.” Instant Transfer for PayPal consumers is now widely available, and for small businesses it is currently available to an early access group of PayPal customers, with plans to be released across Canada in the coming months. For more information about Visa Direct, visit: https://usa.visa.com/run-your-business/visa-direct.html. About Visa Inc. Visa Inc. (NYSE: V) is the world’s leader in digital payments. Our mission is to connect the world through the most innovative, reliable and secure payment network - enabling individuals, businesses and economies to thrive. Our advanced global processing network, VisaNet, provides secure and reliable payments around the world, and is capable of handling more than 65,000 transaction messages a second. The company’s relentless focus on innovation is a catalyst for the rapid growth of connected commerce on any device, and a driving force behind the dream of a cashless future for everyone, everywhere. As the world moves from analog to digital, Visa is applying our brand, products, people, network and scale to reshape the future of commerce. For more information, visit About Visa, https://usa.visa.com/visa-everywhere/blog. html and @VisaNews.

Get an instant repair service 15% discount on all repairs.

About PayPal Fueled by a fundamental belief that having access to financial services creates opportunity, PayPal Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: PYPL) is committed to democratizing financial services and empowering people and businesses to join and thrive in the global economy. Our open digital payments platform gives PayPal’s 277 million active account holders the confidence to connect and transact in new and powerful ways, whether they are online, on a mobile device, in an app, or in person. Through a combination of technological innovation and strategic partnerships, PayPal creates better ways to manage and move money, and offers choice and flexibility when sending payments, paying or getting paid. Available in more than 200 markets around the world, the PayPal platform, including Braintree, Venmo, Xoom and iZettle, enables consumers and merchants to receive money in more than 100 currencies, withdraw funds in 56 currencies and hold balances in their PayPal accounts in 25 currencies. For more information on PayPal, visit https://www.paypal.ca.

Actual fund availability depends on receiving financial institution and region. Visa requires fast-funds enabled issuers to make funds available to their recipient cardholders within a maximum of 30 minutes of approving the transaction. Please refer to your Visa representative and the Visa Direct Original Credit Transaction Global Implementation Guide for more information. [2] Visa Funds Disbursements Research, Aite Group survey commissioned by Visa of 154 North American SMB businesses, Q4 2017 [3] See footnote 2. [1]

2851 John St. Markham ON L36 5R7 647 740 2778


BUSINESS BRANDING

Grow Your

Business

By Growing Your Brand Community WAYNE S ROBERTS

Characterized by the Globe and Mail as "an ad industry provocateur," Wayne brings more than 25 years of award-winning experience in strategic branding, creative advertising and innovative online solutions to Blade's clients. He has “columned” for Canadian Business magazine, and been featured in the Globe and Mail, Marketing & Strategy magazines. He has been interviewed on Global TV and Radio Canada, commenting on modern branding issues. As an educator and public speaker, Wayne has entertained and inspired audiences ranging from National Bank to McMaster University’s FORGE start-up incubator. His commitments to straight talk, creative collaborative and building friendly business relationships are the defining characteristic s of Blade Creative Branding, the agency he founded in 1991.

WAYNE S ROBERTS

President and Chief Creative Officer at Blade Creative Branding Inc.

The Brand Building Secret You May Have Forgotten

Truth: People Don’t Buy Anything.

Provided you keep delivering on your promises, they’ll continue to buy in automatically. When prompted as to what kind of coffee, fried chicken or sweet treat they want, they’ll spontaneously blurt out their brand preference, triggered in their brains at 186,000 miles per second – the speed of light. It happens so fast, they don’t even think about it.

Embracing this perspective, using this language and managing your brand differently, as a result, is the key to charting a path to a more growthoriented future and an even more profitable business model. The reason is simple – when you see your brand differently, you discover the value and staying power of an essential truth that informs all brands.

As contradictory as this may seem on the surface, the truth is your customers don’t buy anything from you. Sure, they drive up to carfriendly service windows, line up in the rain for super sales, or cluster around crowded service counters to order their favourite burger. But the financial investment they make is the product of a more profound emotional investment they’ve made in your brand promise. Simply put: they don’t buy – they buy IN.

The “Secret” Perspective That Inspires Everything About Your Brand

Whether you’ve created and/or run a small or medium business, you might define your brand in a way that all successful, modern brands do. What’s weird is that a lot of brands don’t know they are using this definition or perspective to inform everything they do to grow their businesses.

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Before we reveal the “secret” perspective, let's first understand the almost DNA-based relationship you have with your customers. One that is reinforced with every transaction that takes place, financial or otherwise.

There is only one reason to justify why you invest so heavily in the myriad strategies and tactics that grow brand awareness and invite brand engagement. That justification can be summed up as follows: You’re not just creating a brand and a business. You’re creating a community – a brand community.


Seeing your brand as a community is the secret to coordinating all of your marketing efforts, internally and externally, in a way that inspires loyalty; and that can transform your business into a self-perpetuating movement that grows organically every day of the year ... forever. It’s helpful to remember that seeing your brand as a community creates a near default setting for your customers. It expresses itself in the same way people will respond when asked where they live, for example. They don't have to think about it because it’s a virtually autonomic response. Autonomic meaning hardwired into their physiology – like breathing or their heartbeat. THAT’s enduring loyalty because it’s based on customers taking up residence in your brand and calling it “home.” The reason why seeing your brand as a community is so relevant and useful is because it establishes a business ethos that recognizes and embraces another truth about modern branding. One you may be uncomfortable accepting, at your peril.

Truth: You Don't Own the Brand

You don't have to look too far back in the annals of branding legend and lore to see the mindboggling blunders that befell powerful brands whose “owners” decided they had a license to pursue profits and not maintain their focus on serving their community’s needs. While it may not be a small-medium sized business, Volkswagen is still a dealer network and is still suffering from a head office decision to report less than accurate data on its emissions testing results. The tally to date for that mess, in fines alone, is approaching $20billion (USD). Some have speculated that if Volkswagen had instead invested in engineering more efficient engines, the cost may have been as little as a quarter of the aforementioned penalties. Volkswagen’s executives did the same thing Coke did back in the 80’s and that numerous other brands have done since – they believed they owned the brand. Even if you personally built your with your bare

hands, you stopped “owning” the brand the minute you sold your first product or service. The mechanics are simple – you’re in a relationship with the people who really own the brand because they bought in - and keep buying in day after day. That gives them the right to expect you to serve their needs first. You can cheat and maybe get away with it. But why cut corners? It’s smarter, in the long run, to just find better ways to serve your community - and that will serve your business growth.

Happiness Loves Company, too.

Misery’s not the only thing that loves company - happiness attracts a helluva crowd from which you can build a powerful brand community. Seeing your brand as a community creates a culture of support and care inside your organization that will quickly find its way out to your customers in all of your daily operations. In happy organizations, there exists a collaborative culture that puts the customers’ interests above everything else. When that culture pervades your business, your customers take up the task of sharing their happy stories about their experiences with “their” brand. It might seem old school to encourage spontaneous testimonials and endorsements, but user-generated, positive content is the gold standard result of delivering on your promises. Besides, no amount of flashy ads, super cool store layouts and deep price discounts is going to repair a broken promise. So, keep your promises simple and make every effort to deliver on them consistently.

The ongoing dividend you reap from seeing your brand as something more than just products or service attributes at an attractive price, is a thriving community that consistently attracts new residents. So keep the streets clean, keep the lights on, and keep delivering on your promises. Then enjoy the benefits as your brand community become a growing movement that can’t be stopped.

Five Essential Benefits of Embracing the Brand Community Perspective Puts the Customer Relationship First ... so you’re always innovating better ways to deliver on your promises. Rationalizes Marketing Investments ... on only those strategies and tactics that will enhance customer loyalty. Creates Endless Opportunities to Expand the Brand Narrative ... because your customers will take up the job of telling the happy story of their relationship with, and residency in, the brand. Blunts the Competition’s Efforts to Steal Customers ... because you’re focused on building and bettering your community, it’s less likely folks will move out. Enhances Internal Corporate Culture ... because your employees are core members of the community, their buy in is just as essential as your customers’. After all, they’re the face and voice of your brand so keeping them happy matters, too. CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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BUSINESS CHAT

Discussing business priorities with

Madeleine Chenette Office Managing Director, Montreal, Accenture

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BUSINESS CHAT

Chenette joins Accenture from KPMG Canada, where she led the strategy service line for the past four years. She has more than 22 years of consulting experience with clients across a wide range of industries, including retail, consumer goods, communication, transport, finance and the public sector. Chenette has served as the chair of the board of SECOR Group, an international strategy and management consulting firm, and as a board member of Transat A.T. Inc., an integrated tour operator. Chenette was named to the list of Canada's Most Powerful Women: Top 100 in 2012 by the Women's Executive Network, and was recognized by the Association of Quebec Women in Finance in 2011 and 2013. A certified corporate director, Chenette holds a Master of Science and Administration (M.Sc.) degree from École des Hautes Études Commerciales.

How does it feel to be named for the second year in a row in the Women’s Executive Network 2018 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 list? I am grateful to be in such great company with these women. It feels energizing and it gives me strength to inspire my team in Montreal to reach new heights. For over 25 years, you have been encouraging women entrepreneurs in Canada. What inspired you to go into this line of business? I am naturally a very curious person. And it’s that curiosity that has led me to always question, inquire and discover in order to create and innovate. I took my career learnings and my willingness to be a leader and challenge the status quo into business consulting.

"Accenture is a leading global professional services company, providing a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. Combining unmatched experience and specialized skills across more than 40 industries and all business functions – underpinned by the world’s largest delivery network – Accenture works at the intersection of business and technology to help clients improve their performance and create sustainable value for their stakeholders. With approximately 459,000 people serving clients in more than 120 countries, Accenture drives innovation to improve the way the world works and lives. Visit us at www.accenture.com."

that diversity is essential for innovation and economic growth. We have very talented people in our society but women remain smart, strong forces to be reckoned with in the sidelines. We need to support, teach and mentor one another to lift each other up to new heights. There are still many differences in the roles played by men and women. Until women are half-and-half at the top, we won’t prosper. And there are still huge gaps at work and at home. I say to women to sell your talents. Present yourself so everyone understands what you have to offer. It could all disappear, so keep showing the way forward.

Some would consider me as a women pioneer and leader in the field of business consulting in Canada, and this has led me to dedicate myself to many causes to benefit women and women leadership in Quebec and across Canada.

In doing my part, I consistently challenge Accenture leaders to break down barriers and support women. What makes me proud is that Accenture aims to achieve a gender-balanced workforce, with 50% women and 50% men, by 2025. That fills me with pride because the advancement of women should absolutely be a business priority.

Women have made a lot of progress in the last decade when it comes to entrepreneurship. Do you believe that they still need the same support that they needed 25 years ago? Yes, women’s roles are still fragile worldwide. I believe that women here have more support today than they did 25 years ago. I also believe

What would you say is the biggest challenge that women entrepreneurs face today compared to 20 years ago? The challenges are many. Women entrepreneurs are taken more seriously than before, but there is still room for improvement. Most often, we have to defy social expectations and deal with

limited access to funding. Work-life balance can be a big struggle for women and men alike. The difference is that women are increasingly sharing ‘life’ responsibilities with men and that is a really good thing. Let’s hope that the next 20 years sees a more equal responsibility sharing in that regard. You also have several years of experience in helping clients come up with innovative ideas and succeed in the business world. How do you go about helping business owners become more innovative? I am deeply connected to the artificial intelligence ecosystem in Quebec and have built strong strategic relationships with the Montreal Institute for Learning Algorithms (MILA, Université de Montréal), the Institute for Data Valorisation (IVADO) and the AI super-cluster in Montreal. I also played a significant leadership role in supporting the Conseil Consutltatif de l’Économie et de l’Innovation led by the Chair of Investissemement Québec and sponsored by the Minister of Economy, Science and Innovation. This gives me a thorough understanding of the industry’s possibilities. There is more than one way to solve a problem and being connected to a diverse ecosystem of stakeholders provides us with multiple points of view and solution possibilities.

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BUSINESS CHAT

customers are more and more embracing products and services that have value and relevance to their lives, as well as organizations that are taking an ethical or political stance. Read more at Fjord Trends 2019.

In your opinion, does innovation play a crucial part in the success of a business? Of course, in the ever evolving global scale, any business that does not innovate gambles getting left behind and natural selection could ultimately threaten their viability. Also, to deliver better innovation you need diversity of opinion. And to achieve the full potential of diversity and to obtain results that will benefit the whole business, you have to bring everyone together to think and work with a global mindset – pay attention to everyone’s unique perspectives and skills that are on the table. Accenture provides professional services to business owners to help them innovate and succeed. Can you talk about some of the services and programs that Accenture provides to help SMEs? We provide a broad range of services and solutions in strategy, consulting, digital, technology and operations. Accenture works at the intersection of business and technology, with specialized skills across more than 40 industries and all business functions, to help clients improve their performance and create sustainable value for stakeholders. Our professional services skillset ranges from cybersecurity to artificial intelligence to banking and financial services expertise. What advice can you give to small business owners who are looking for innovative ways to grow their business? Beyond innovation, purpose and relevance are now playing a greater role in the success of a business and are becoming key success factors: 20

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What would you say is the biggest challenge that SME owners face when trying to be innovative? SMEs will need to leverage the market power and scale of larger, established enterprises if they are to be truly successful. For their part, large companies are feeling pressure to innovate and become more entrepreneurial, yet find their culture and structures getting in the way. These two kinds of organizations – entrepreneurs/ startups and large enterprises – need to combine their respective, distinctive capabilities and collaborate in new ways in the digital era. If you’d like to know more, Accenture’s report Harnessing the Power of Entrepreneurs to Open innovation touches upon this. Can you talk about some of the accomplishments that Accenture has had on Canadian businesses over the years? Accenture in Canada started operations in 1989. For nearly 30 years, our Canadian clients have relied on Accenture’s global expertise and experience and our ability to apply new technology and new methodologies to deliver bottom line, innovative results. We are best known for our commitment to help leading businesses and governments with their most complex challenges – from business strategy through to design, build and operation of core business technology. Accenture offers end-toend services unlike any other organization. Canadians frequently interact with our clients who have hired Accenture to deliver high performance across all financial services, all levels of government, and all industry groups including natural resources, utilities, retail, consumer goods and manufacturing. In Canada, we work with a significant share of the TSX 60. Accenture is aiming to achieve a genderbalanced workforce by 2025. How are they working towards achieving that goal? Accenture has taken a number of steps to attract, retain, advance and sponsor women on its path to achieving a gender balanced workforce, namely our Getting to Equal commitment, which includes: •

Sponsoring the company’s most senior women to advance in P&L roles. Since its inception six years ago, approximately

80% of the women in the global executive leadership program have been promoted or have significantly expanded their areas of responsibility. •

Delivering on a commitment to transparency. The company has set and published clear, measurable targets to grow its number of women, and has published its workforce demographics in many countries including the U.S., Canada, South Africa, Japan, India and ASEAN countries.

Launching initiatives that provide women with in-demand skills. For example, the company’s Women in Technology program helps fast-track the careers of highperforming women toward the position of Technical Architect, a high-demand and short-supply role.

Collaborating across business and government to further gender equality in the workplace, with commitments that include the White House Equal Pay Pledge, Paradigm for Parity, and Catalyst CEO Champions for Change.

We embrace diversity as a source of creativity and competitive advantage. Our ultimate goal is to create a truly human environment where people have a real sense of belonging, where they can show up every day, be who they are and be their best, both professionally and personally. On a more personal note, what would you say is your biggest accomplishment aside from being named twice in a row as Women’s Executive Network 2018 Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 list? My family is my biggest joy and accomplishment. As the youngest of eight children, I know what it means to need to speak up a little louder and take my place with a bit more purpose. As a parent, I also understand that it’s even more challenging for today’s youth to pinpoint what they want to do professionally. My passion in the workplace is one thing. But I strive to teach my children to try their best in achieving their dreams – whatever they may one day be. It’s hard for any working mother to know if we’re succeeding at parenting, but at the end of the day what really matters to me is that they are proud of me. And I hope that my work ethic is setting a good example for them to follow. To successfully manage a demanding career while also surpassing expectations at home is not always a given, but I would venture to say that my life is very fulfilling on both fronts.


THOUGHT LEADERSHIP

Q&A: Vote

Prosperity with Hon. Perrin Beatty President & CEO of the Canadian Chamber of Commerce The Honourable Perrin Beatty is the President and Chief Executive Officer of the 200,000-member Canadian Chamber of Commerce, Canada’s largest and most representative nationalbusiness association.

As October approaches, the federal parties will be launching their election platforms, but the Canadian Chamber of Commerce is starting the race off with the launch of its own platform, Vote Prosperity, in early May. We spoke to the Honourable Perrin Beatty, P.C., O.C., President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Chamber ahead of this election season.

How is the Canadian Chamber preparing for the upcoming federal election?

and dysfunctional over the years. But SMEs also face challenges that are unique to them, including little time and few resources to identify opportunities presented by trade agreements and government programs to help them grow. SMEs that do decide to make the exporting leap need readily access to in-country resources to ensure they can comply with regulatory requirements. SMEs also have difficulties here at home too. Dealing with the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) is the pain point cited most by local chambers whose membership are mostly SMEs.

We are putting the voice of Canadian businesses front and centre in the upcoming federal election with the launch of Vote Prosperity, our economic blueprint for a more prosperous Canada. We have called on all the federal parties to address the long-term success of our economy by supporting the priorities in our election platform.

To help solve these issues for SMEs, what are you asking all federal party leaders to commit to?

What are the priorities that Vote Prosperity focuses on?

Providing sector-by-sector analyses of free trade agreements (rather than agreement-by-agreement) and communicating them widely;

With the objective of helping businesses create jobs, attract investment, achieve growth and strengthen communities, Vote Prosperity focuses on the following seven priorities:

Providing high-potential SMEs with access to experts to help them navigate the relevant markets;

Ensuring federal programs and interactions with business align with and respect small business realities; and

Conducting an independent service delivery audit of the Canada Revenue Agency, targeted at identifying and eliminating the compliance, audit and communication problems small businesses face in dealing with the agency

A tax system that is fair, efficient and modern

A regulatory system that works for everyone

Access to new markets around the world and the elimination of trade barriers at home

Resources to help small and medium companies grow and succeed

Innovation and infrastructure to make Canada the most connected country in the world

A workforce with the skills, education and training to prosper

A healthier pharmacare system for healthier Canadians

What are some specific challenges SMEs are currently facing? Like their larger counterparts, Canadian SMEs need relief from the tax and regulatory systems that have become increasingly complex

The next federal government can play its part by:

Any final thoughts, Perrin? For all of our challenges, Canadians remain among the most fortunate people in the world. All we need is the vision to recognize the potential of our SMEs and determination to create the opportunities for them and all Canadians. That is what we are setting out to do with Vote Prosperity. To learn more about the Canadian Chamber’s Vote Prosperity election platform, visit www.VoteProsperityCA.ca. CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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BUSINESS R&D

How to maximize

R&D budgets and de-risk innovation

ALEJANDRO ADEM

CEO and Scientific Director of Mitacs Alejandro Adem is CEO and Scientific Director of Mitacs, a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada. As CEO of Mitacs, Adem has overseen an unprecedented expansion of its programs, with the goal of delivering 10,000 research-based internships annually across Canada and abroad by 2020.

B

rasseurs de la Mauricie, an upstart Quebec brewer (now called L’Hermite), had a problem that threatened to take the fizz out of its ambitious business plan. The four-year-old firm had acquired a used brewing line as part of its expansion strategy, but the owners soon discovered the equipment’s limitations: the gear could only fill one bottle size, and couldn’t be adapted for tallboy cans, which are popular among beer consumers. What’s more, the used equipment sucked energy, which increased unit costs and generated unwanted greenhouse gas emissions. The upshot was that Brasseurs had no potential to expand the line. The solution came from Mitacs, when we partnered the brewer with a small team of mechanical engineering students at the Université du Québec à Trois Rivières. Working on an R&D-focused internship with the company, the students adjusted the equipment so it could work with cans of different sizes. More importantly, they devised a way to route parts of the line outside of the building, allowing ambient temperatures to naturally cool the beer as it moved through the production process, which produced substantial energy savings.

"Variations of the Element AI story have played—and continue to play—out with other Mitacs partnerships across the country. Another success story was when we supported software engineering R&D with a budding start-up that would eventually become Pro Studio Masters, one of three firms that deliver high bandwidth streaming of recording session masters to major record labels."

Such university-business partnerships form an increasingly critical link in R&D, especially for the owners of SMEs, who are often pressed to find the time and resources to embark on research initiatives within their own firms. With top-of-mind focus on operational issues such as cash flow, staffing and equipment, SMEs naturally put concerns that aren’t mission critical on the backburner. Mitacs, a not-for-profit organization that fosters growth and innovation in Canada for business and academia, understands this challenge. We work with companies to create an innovation road map and then help them find the right research counterparts to drive development. The day-to-day transfer of knowledge between our interns and the businesses they support is the major power

behind the success of the program. The partnerships allow companies to share R&D costs and significantly de-risk that innovation proposition. The payback can be game-changing, as the backstory of Element AI, one of Canada’s hottest artificial intelligence start-ups, shows. The company has its roots in the merger of two start-ups that thrived thanks in large part to funding by Mitacs. Twenty years ago, our organization funded three Université de Montréal grad students and their PhD supervisor in developing AI technologies to improve insurance risk modelling and financial portfolio management. They commercialized their research with the launch of a company in 2001. At about the same time, another Mitacs-funded project at Université de Montréal yielded a second AI start-up. The principals of the two firms collaborated closely on the use of AI, and in 2016, that association matured into Element AI. The company, which now counts about 500 employees in five cities across three continents, raised a record-breaking $135 million in a Series A financing in 2017. Variations of the Element AI story have played—and continue to play—out with other Mitacs partnerships across the country. Another success story was when we supported software engineering R&D with a budding start-up that would eventually become Pro Studio Masters, one of three firms that deliver high bandwidth streaming of recording session masters to major record labels. The interns working on the project had both coding skills and extensive knowledge of various music genres. To date, Mitacs has supported hundreds of collaborations between SMEs and university researchers that have successfully advanced pre-commercialized research and provided businesses with the boost they need to get to the next level of innovation. It’s a telling detail—one that reveals how SMEs are recognizing that actively investing in innovation isn’t one more time-consuming task on a CEO’s to-do list, but rather the key to future success and profitability. CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

Shaping up Southern Ontario's business landscape

James Meddings President, Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario

James Meddings was appointed President of the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario (FedDev Ontario) on October 31, 2016. James served as Assistant Deputy Minister of Policy and Strategic Direction at Western Economic Diversification from 2011- 2016 and Vice President, Individual Learning and later Vice President, Organizational Leadership at the Canada School of Public Service from 2006 to 2011. In his 28 years of federal public service Mr. Meddings has also held positions as Director General, Policy and Corporate Affairs, at the Meteorological Service of Canada; Director General, Parliamentary and Corporate Affairs, Human Resources Development Canada; Policy Analyst at the Privy Council Office, and Advisor to the Chief Commissioner, at the Canadian Human Rights Commission. Prior to joining the federal public service, Mr. Meddings taught economics and political science in public and private schools in the United Kingdom and Canada. Mr. Meddings has a Bachelor of Arts (Honours) in Economic and Social Studies from the University of East Anglia; a Post Graduate Certificate in Education from the University of Birmingham; and, a Masters in Public Policy and Public Administration from Concordia University. He is married and lives in Almonte, Ontario with his wife Susie Quackenbush and their four children: Sam, Harry, Max and Georgia. 24

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As President of the Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario, can you tell us about your role to give our readers a better idea of what your responsibilities are? As President, a job I was appointed to almost three years ago, I have the great privilege of leading an Agency that helps Canadians living and working in the region to seize opportunities created by the innovation economy. FedDev Ontario is a small Agency, with just over 240 employees, but it delivers on a big mandate. With our headquarters in Waterloo and offices in Toronto, Peterborough and Ottawa, we deliver programs and services to support Canadian SME’s to grow, scale and build on the region’s competitive advantages to spur innovation across Southern Ontario. The majority of my time is spent meeting with stakeholders, and helping to shape and deliver our programs and services to meet the needs of businesses, organizations and communities in the region. Over the last six weeks, we completed more than 20 stakeholder roundtables across rural and urban communities to discuss the key strengths, challenges and opportunities for businesses and communities to innovate and grow, which will help guide us in our future partnerships and investments.

The Agency continues to deliver impressive results, which can be seen in southern Ontario businesses that are creating innovative technologies, improving their productivity, growing their revenues, and in the economic advancement of communities across southern Ontario. I encourage you to take a look at some of our success stories. I am proud to say that in the 2019 Budget, we were provided permanent funding. I view this as a validation of the impact the Agency has had since it was created 10 years ago. As a permanent Agency, FedDev Ontario will be a stable long-term partner in supporting innovation and economic growth in, I would argue, Canada’s most vital and dynamic region. Not only are we committed to making a difference in the region, we are also committed to being a model of a respectful workplace, that attracts and develops talent, creates an environment where employees are challenged to be innovative and creative in an organization that celebrates learning and excellence. This is why my executive team and I were delighted to see that we were ranked in the top 10 best places to work in the federal government in a recent Hill Times article.


EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW

"FedDev Ontario offers a range programs and services to grow businesses, cultivate strong partnerships and build strong communities across the region. The program and/or service that best serves a business depends on its stage of growth and its specific needs. "

You have over 28 years of experience in the federal public service. How do you believe your expertise in public service has prepared you for your current role? I have worked at several departments, starting my career at the Canadian Human Rights Commission, followed by increasingly challenging jobs at the Privy Council Office, Human Resources Development Canada, Environment Canada, the Canada School of Public Service, and Western Economic Diversification. It was at WD, as the ADM Policy, where I was exposed to regional economic development and got to see first-hand that, by working closely with businesses and key stakeholders, you can make a big difference on a large scale. Over the years, I have learned that creating a culture of respect and excellence ensures a safe and positive workplace—one where employees feel engaged and inspired. That is what I continue to foster at FedDev Ontario. The work staff do is rewarding and challenging. There are so many bright, interesting people whom we meet who are trying to grow their companies, scale their businesses, adopt technology, increase productivity and penetrate new markets. They are creating the jobs of the new economy and Agency staff have a chance to see directly the impact of the important work they do. These are interesting and hugely rewarding public service jobs. Can you tell us about some of the ways that FedDev Ontario is helping small businesses grow and succeed? I am constantly reminded of the great work that the Agency does to drive growth. We have invested almost $2 billion in the region since our creation in 2009. We have supported nearly 13,000 businesses and organizations. Over 31,000 jobs have been created and maintained since 2014, leveraging $3.6 billion in partner funding and resulting in nearly 1500 commercialized products. Our investments are having a real impact on the people, businesses and communities across the region. Building on these results, with over $1 billion in funding over the next five years, FedDev Ontario will make investments that drive innovation and growth in the region. We recently restructured our programs into three simplified funding streams that were designed to help businesses and entrepreneurs scale-up, develop Southern Ontario’s innovation ecosystem and strengthen communities across the region. Through these streams, we support the commercialization of new technologies, technology adoption and adaptation, scale up and market growth and expansion. We bring together various stakeholders to

create clusters and bolster supply chains. We also provide community economic development and diversification investments for small and rural communities in southern Ontario, including the recently allocated $100 million of FedDev Ontario’s core funding for projects that drive innovation and growth in rural Southern Ontario. We also deliver key national programming across the region. For example, over the last year, we have delivered: -over $35 million to deliver support for women entrepreneurs in southern Ontario -more than $39 million through the new Steel and Aluminum Initiative -more than $11 million to deliver the Canadian Experiences Fund FedDev Ontario provides several programs and services that contribute towards the economic growth and support innovation. Would you say that innovation and economic growth go hand in hand? Why? Innovation is the key driver of economic growth. The productivity improvements that come from cutting-edge innovation allow us to be more competitive and unlock growth potential. As the economy becomes increasingly digital, knowledge-intensive and global, the creation of new technology, products and processes will enable Canadian SMEs to compete. In addition, with clean growth becoming increasingly important, innovation will be critical to getting the most out of limited resources and to fostering long-term sustainable growth. What is the best program and/or service that FedDev offers that can help small business owners grow their business? FedDev Ontario offers a range programs and services to grow businesses, cultivate strong partnerships and build strong communities across the region. The program and/or service that best serves a business depends on its stage of growth and its specific needs. If we don’t have programming that is applicable, our knowledgeable staff can help entrepreneurs and organizations find other federal and local business support. For example, we work with other departments and stakeholders under the Accelerated Growth Service and with aerospace and defence SMEs under the Industrial and Technological Benefits Policy.

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INTERVIEW

The Agency also works with local partners and economic development organizations that understand the unique challenges in rural communities.

needs of the region’s communities and economy, and the Agency works to identify strategic collaborations and solutions to local challenges and opportunities.

The region of Southern Ontario is an important contributor to Canada’s economic growth and accounts for approximately 40% of the Canadian GDP. What do you believe are the main factors that play in hand here?

Based on a review of our programming and feedback received from clients, we created a single on-line application form and streamlined our initiatives into three simplified funding streams, They are designed to meet the needs of our innovators and job creators, and create a more diverse, inclusive regional economy that supports long-term growth and a better quality of life for Canadians.

As the global economic landscape evolves, strong regional economies are essential for Canada’s success and sustainability. As Canada’s most populous region – home to 13.3 million residents living in 288 urban and rural communities − Southern Ontario is a key contributor to our nation’s economy and is Canada’s most dynamic innovation ecosystem. It’s home to a diverse and talented workforce, world-class post-secondary and research institutions, and a vibrant start-up ecosystem. The region boasts a rich industrial heritage, globally connected firms, and ICT strengths in emerging areas that will be critical for the digital economy of the future, such as advanced manufacturing, cyber security, regenerative medicine/bio-technologies, and quantum computing. To continue as a major driver of Canada’s economic growth, the region must increase business investment in leading-technology and support firm scale-up with better access to risk capital. These are key factors to grow competitive companies in Ontario, promote export growth, and expand global reach. The Federal Economic Development Agency for Southern Ontario plays a crucial role in the development of innovative systems that can contribute towards the growth and development of the Canadian economy. What are some of the strategies that the agency uses when it comes to developing successful programs and services that can help towards innovative systems? Canada’s regional development agencies (RDAs) are one of the four national innovation platforms identified to provide the support needed for Canadian businesses to succeed. Along with the Industrial Research Assistance Program, the Strategic Innovation Fund and the Canadian Trade Commissioner Service, RDAs support highpotential Canadian businesses by providing them with the resources, tools and knowledge they need to scale up and expand into new markets. FedDev Ontario’s programs target the unique

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This new programming supports innovative projects in Southern Ontario that will: • Increase the number of highgrowth firms • Strengthen key networks to build on areas of regional innovation strength • Increase the commercialization of new and innovative technologies, products or processes • Increase business investments in the adoption/adaptation of leadingedge technologies • Create and maintain highly skilled jobs •

Increase the value of exports

• Promote inclusive growth and participation of traditionally underrepresented groups such as women, Indigenous and young entrepreneurs • Strengthen opportunities and networks to drive growth, and support the attraction and retention of businesses and talent to southern Ontario’s smaller communities and rural areas

FedDev also supports the commercialization of new technologies. How important do you believe it is to encourage the retailing of new technologies? How can this benefit small business owners? The commercialization of new technologies by SMEs is central to improving our competitiveness on the global stage. It is a catalyst for the development and growth of new businesses,

high-value jobs, and long-term economic prosperity. It also enables businesses to compete in today’s digital, knowledge-intensive global economy, leads to technology spillovers, strengthened clusters, new markets for innovative products and processes, and furthers investments into Canada’s R&D. That is why commercialization is one of the key objectives of FedDev Ontario’s programming. In your opinion, what would you say is the biggest challenge that small business owners face when it comes to innovating new products and how can FedDev help them overcome these challenges? In today’s global economy, Canadian SMEs are challenged to scale up. They often point to a lack of access to risk capital that can help them adopt technologies, commercialize products and improve their productivity performance. FedDev Ontario provides Southern Ontario SMEs with access to capital, through zero-interest financial contributions, for projects aimed at investing in the adoption of cutting-edge technologies, commercializing innovative products/services, significantly scaling-up, improving productivity, and developing and/or expanding into new markets. The Agency’s investments in Southern Ontario’s ecosystem also indirectly help start-ups and entrepreneurs with growth potential access supports and services they need to build customer bases, attract talent, promote business productivity and expand. On a final note, prior to joining the federal public service, you used to teach economics and political science in public and private schools within Canada and the UK. What made you decide to make the switch and join the federal public service of Candada? I came to Canada as a young teacher on a oneyear contract and quickly fell in love with Canada, its beauty, the diversity of its people and its potential. The opportunity to work at the Canadian Human Rights Commission was an amazing one, and it exposed me to the positive influence and impact the public service has on its communities and people. Over the following 29 years, I have been able to contribute to the development and implementation of social and economic policies and programs and to see the impact of that work. The work is always challenging and engaging, and it’s incredibly satisfying to work every day with people committed to making a difference in the lives of Canadians.


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SMALL BUSINESS

Time to

celebrate

the spouses behind Canadian SMEs

DAN KELLY President & Chief Executive OfficerCFIB Dan Kelly serves as President, Chief Executive Officer and Chair of the Board of Governors of the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB).

W

ith an elementary-schoolaged son, a heavy workload and an often unpredictable travel schedule, I know that I would be lost if I didn’t have a tremendously supportive and understanding spouse (who balances her own full-time work schedule). If asked, I’m sure many working Canadians would report the same. But for independent business owners, a spouse or partner is something even more. Running a small business can mean shouldering the burdens and celebrating the payoffs of hard work without colleagues or professional mentors to lean on. Your spouses and family members frequently become not only your biggest cheerleaders, but also your closest professional partners, in both formal and informal ways. A majority of small business owners – more than two thirds – employ family members, according to a 2016 CFIB member survey. A separate survey found that over half of small businesses compensate the owners’ spouses for their contributions to the business – often through a salary, dividends or some combination of both.

"One of my greatest concerns is that it remains very difficult for any business owner – even for tax professionals – to clearly understand the new rules. A confusing mix of “bright line” and “reasonableness” tests, exemptions for some, but not for others, will now be passed to the Canada Revenue Agency to interpret and sort out."

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Being the spouse of a small business owner doesn’t stop at devoting one’s time and skills to the business. Spouses often have to maintain an outside job to provide stability while the business establishes itself. They might have to take on a greater proportion of the domestic labour, child or elder care, while their partner devotes long hours to running their business. And I’ve met many spouses who have had to step in and run the business when something happened to their partner so they could keep the doors open, the lights on and the employees paid. Spouses also have to share the uncertainties and the sacrifices owners make for their business – often including the inability to take a family vacation, difficulty qualifying for a

mortgage, an unclear financial future, or even family bills going unpaid during bad months. So it was jarring when the federal government introduced new rules on income splitting at the end of 2017, severely limiting small business owners’ ability to include their family members’ contributions in their tax calculations starting on January 1, 2018. Even more so because details of the changes were announced only two and a half weeks before they were to come into effect, with next to no consultation and despite protests from business groups, tax professionals and the Senate. The government claimed the suite of new rules for sharing dividends or salaries with family members would have only a modest impact, affecting a handful of high income earners. Unfortunately, upon greater review, this will affect tens of thousands of independent family businesses. In fact, the independent Parliamentary Budget Officer has estimated that the new tax revenue to government will be two to three times higher than government estimated and noted that it is extremely difficult to determine who will be affected by the new rules. One of my greatest concerns is that it remains very difficult for any business owner – even for tax professionals – to clearly understand the new rules. A confusing mix of “bright line” and “reasonableness” tests, exemptions for some, but not for others will now be passed to the Canada Revenue Agency to interpret and sort out. And this was all done essentially retroactively, before business owners were able to sort out and make changes to accommodate the new rules. What is clear is that it will be nearly impossible for the CRA to sort out all of the formal and informal ways family members are involved in a business. Even family members who are not actively involved in the day to day operations are heavily implicated – as risk takers, extra labour, potential successors and investors.


Sustainability is a Non-Negotiable for Next Gen Small Business Owners HP’s recent survey of global small business owners found:

I think back to the lunch I had with a woman whose husband runs a Quebec trucking firm. She told me that while her husband was the president and sole shareholder of the business, she has been holding on to a handwritten note in their household safe noting the money she lent her husband to get the business going. I think of the woman I know who suddenly had to quit her day job in Manitoba to lead the family auto-body shop when her husband suddenly dropped dead. Or the husband of the dentist who does the books at home while his wife focuses on running the practice. How CRA will interpret the thousands of unique and often informal roles spouses play over the life of a business is anyone’s guess. What has gotten lost in the discussion around income sprinkling is who these measures were originally designed to help. These aren’t CEOs of large corporations looking to offload some income on an uninvolved spouse so they can dodge taxes. These are typically long-running, independent businesses where everyone in the family lends a hand when needed. The contribution of family members, particularly spouses, should not be erased by a government that hasn’t really tried to understand the reality of running a small business. With a federal election looming, CFIB has released its Small Business Platform, outlining the policies that matter most to small business owners. We are calling on all parties – including the current government – to commit to a full spousal exemption when business income or dividends are shared in their upcoming platforms. The spouses of Canadian small business owners deserve this kind of respect. Read the full Small Business Platform at cfib. ca/election.

Toll Free: 844-242-4400

The majority of Canadian small business owners (66 per cent) believe it’s their duty to do their part in protecting the environment and 59 per cent feel it’s their responsibility to contribute to the community they operate in. 50 per cent of small business owners in Canada said making the world a better place was a key motivator to continue building their business. 64 per cent would deliberately choose not to grow their business if it meant going against their values. Sustainability is influencing business decisions. Choosing the right vendors and then stocking the best supplies - from the printer you use in the back office, to the paper you're using - matters. Today, consumers are looking for brands to drive positive social change and the next generation of small business owners are answering the call. The 2019 HP Small Business Today Survey paints a picture of the dramatic shift in what drives small business owners globally—with the next generation of leaders motivated more by societal impact than previous generations. The survey found most Canadian small business owners feel it’s their responsibility to fill any gaps the government leaves behind when it comes to the environment and communities. This sense of responsibility is grounded at their core with 64 per cent of Canadian business owners saying they would choose to prioritize company values over their bottom line. These purpose-driven company values get stronger with each new generation being less motivated by personal gain and more motivated by contributing to society. Gen Z proved itself to be the generation most devoted to social good and most likely to focus on making positive change in their industry. When it comes to the environment, sustainability is influencing business

decisions with 66 per cent of Canadian small business owners feeling accountable for the well-being of the environment. Choosing the right vendors and sustainable supplies - from the printer in the back office, to the paper posters are printed on - matters today. For Megan Cassidy and Jane Son, owners of Casson Hardware in Toronto, that means strategic partnerships with suppliers that allow them to operate their business sustainably and offer products they can be proud of. “Creating beautiful, responsibly crafted hardware is foundational to our ethos around sustainability,” says Son. “Not only do we want our products to age well and be reused but we also pay close attention to the finer details of our business operations to ensure we are acting responsibly across the board.” While running an online business reduces the company’s overall footprint, it also requires more printing and shipping than a traditional brick-and-mortar shop. In an effort to print responsibly, Casson subscribes to the HP Instant Ink program. Their printer sends ink level information directly to HP, which ships replacement cartridges when ink runs low, eliminating the need to go out and buy replacement cartridges. More than 80 per cent of HP ink cartridges are now manufactured with closed loop recycled plastic through the HP Planet Partners program. Making responsible purchasing decisions that are aligned with Casson’s company mission are one of their keys to success. “With HP Instant Ink, there’s very little waste, and we’re not scrambling to refill at the last minute, so it helps us work efficiently and be more sustainable,” Son says. Casson is among a growing set of Canadian small business owners reaping the benefits of prioritizing sustainable operations and partnerships. With the rise of purpose-driven companies, each new generation has a stronger foundation on which to build upon, paving a path for positive change, and hope for the future. Data referenced: A 2019 online survey conducted by HP.

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MARKETING

WHAT DOES TODAY’S

MODERN B2B MARKETER NEED TO SUCCEED How to stay up to date in the world of marketing today with continuous search engine algorithm changes, expanding social media channels, advancing coding languages and endless automation tools expanding productivity.

ERICA HAKONSON Principal & B2B Marketing Maven at Maven Collective Marketing

Erica Hakonson, Principal of Maven Collective Marketing, has likely spent more time pondering, testing and contemplating your web searches than you will ever be comfortable knowing about. For 13+ years, she has been working in B2B marketing with companies like the Microsoft Corporation, Safeco Insurance, BONZAI Intranet and many more to disrupt the norm, connecting people-to-people rather than business-to-business. Established in 2012, Maven Collective Marketing is the trusted digital marketing agency and partner to B2B software and B2B software services companies to help organizations thrive in the oversaturated marketplace of B2B software sameness.

Business owners and marketers must learn how to utilize and adapt metrics-driven technologies to compete and stay relevant in today’s global B2B market. There’s a vast variety of technological options available to measure, optimize, automate, convert and enhance your marketing, and here are the absolute musts in marketing software solutions that should be in every marketer’s tool belt.

Measurement Marketing Management Software Solutions Every good B2B marketer knows you can’t improve on what you don’t measure. The Google Marketing Platform is one example of an extremely useful tool that centralizes all aspects of the Google business platforms. This campaign management suite helps you plan, optimize and measure the effectiveness of your web content and all of your paid media. The platform builds connections between existing integrations, ads, websites and app analytics to create relevant campaigns for Search, Display and Video 360 in one environment. The platform tools, such as DoubleClick ads, Google Analytics, Data Studio and AB testing, are closely integrated so you can analyze the relevant data and the impact they have on each other. Beyond Google there are plenty of other quality marketing analytics tools that can be

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the guiding ruler in your modern marketing tool belt, such as: Moz, SEMRush, Ahrefs and ScreamingFrog.

Optimization Search Engine Tools Once you’ve determined the current performance of your marketing, it’s time to improve it. Search engine marketing (SEM) changes daily, and it can be hard to keep up. Not to mention, if you are also trying to stay on top of the myriad of other marketing and advertising platforms. Fortunately, there are some outstanding SEM optimization tools to help you with this. If you are wondering how search engines view your website, what to improve, how to improve, and if you are looking for some guidance and insights, check out these optimization tools: Nibbler, SEMRush [SEM ToolBar], Moz [MozBar], Ahrefs and YoastSEO.

Marketing Automation Software Solutions Marketing Automation Systems (MAS) enables you to schedule your presence, communications, campaigns and more. While you may need a few hours of shut eye, your marketing automation tools don’t. But don’t be overzealous with these modern day miracles, remember your customers still want to hear from you, not robots. Automated/inbound marketing services can help you manage and organize numerous customer workflows and segments, as well as create an environment conducive to growth.


MARKETING

When utilized with forethought and monitored thoughtfully MAS, such as, Pardot, Marketo, Hubspot and ActOn, can help you get jobs done, and can do everything from manage your contact database, nurture prospective customers, automate communication workflows and social awareness. Often these MAS solutions are paired with Customer Relationship Management (CRM) solutions to organize and manage all the contact and customer data collected. A CRM system allows you to collect client data and keep track of customer interactions, which these systems do automatically. There are also automation tools like Hootsuite and Buffer that are dedicated to managing social media channels, scheduling social media posts, monitoring, and reporting on these campaigns.

Transformative Marketing Conversion Tools Generating new leads is at the front of every modern marketer’s mind. So how do you make it happen more often? Modern marketing today has granted access and tools to transform your marketing. These range from paid advertising tools (e.g. Google Ads, Facebook Ads, and YouTube Advertising) that help you convert faster through paying per lead, to transformative conversion optimization tools (e.g. CrazyEgg, Lucky Orange, HelloBar) that help you generate website leads faster with fresh insights to how

people use your website through heatmapping, scroll mapping and click maps.

yield some significant marketing ROI when used properly.

Iterative Marketing Enhancement Solutions

Beyond email nurture marketing, you can also market to individuals who have not yet chosen to engage on your website, providing contact information, and or similar audiences that you have seen success with before. This type of marketing is called “remarketing”, and it can be a very impactful tool to help you intercept prospective buyers at their unique point in the buyer journey by establishing brand awareness and eventually brand recognition, potentially even before the prospective customer knows what they are looking for, or that they may have visited your website before. Remarketing platforms are exactly what modern marketers are looking for to stay one step ahead, with Google Remarketing, Facebook Remarketing and Bing Remarketing, just to name a few.

Website iteration is key to keeping your website fresh, relevant and customer-focused. A game changer for most modern marketers and business owners is a Content Management System (e.g. WordPress, Drupal, Sitamatic, Hubspot, Wix and SquareSpace, etc.). Content Management Systems (CMS) make managing your website content and posting a blog as easy as preparing a word document or a press release. They have simple WISYWG editors that make publishing, editing and managing content easy. However, the best way to edit any website is often through the HTML editor/code-base editor to ensure the website code is clean, bug-free.

Nurture Marketing Software Solutions Email marketing isn’t new, and while some think it is a thing of the past, it actually is approximately 22 per cent more effective at engaging potential buyers. What makes email marketing so effective today is the potential to really nurture the client, by a drip email marketing campaign series that can be programmed directly to segmented prospect’s interest, demographics, buying behaviour and more. Email marketing systems that are powerful enough to deliver these tools, such as Pardot, MailChimp and ClickDimensions,

ASSEMBLING THE ULTIMATE MARKETER’S TOOL KIT It should be noted that many of these musthave B2B marketing software platforms have areas of beneficial crossover, so while they each offer their own unique benefits it is up to each individual company to decide which is the best fit for them and their needs. Marketing software solutions are strong tools for the modern marketer and business owners that when used optimally have the power to make a good company, a great company.

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WORKPLACE

Published Study Demonstrates Positive Clinical and Workplace Outcomes,

Including Mental Health Improvements, as a Result of External Employee Assistance Program vs. Control Group While Employee Assistance Programs (EAPs) have been used in the workplace to maintain or improve employee productivity since the early 1980s, studies have only been correlational in nature due to the absence of control groups, making it difficult to establish a causal link between any observed improvements and use of service.

The Impact of a Canadian EAP on Mental Health and Workplace Functioning: Findings from a Prospective Quasi-Experimental Study, published online today in the Journal of Workplace Behavioral Health, investigated the causal impacts of a Canadian external EAP on mental health, workplace functioning and life satisfaction.

"To our knowledge, this is the first quasiexperimental study incorporating a control group conducted with an external EAP," said Dr. Marc Milot, research psychologist and consultant at Workreach Solutions (APAS Laboratory Inc.). "By developing and deploying a research approach approximating a randomized controlled trial, the study findings provided evidence in support of a causal link between use of the AreteÂŽ HR Inc. EAP and a number of positive clinical and workplace outcomes." 32

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WORKPLACE

Study results summary: •

At six months follow-up, Arete EAP users demonstrated significantly reduced psychological distress, including reduced symptoms of depression and anxiety compared to the control group of nonEAP users.

Arete EAP users had significantly reduced work presenteeism and work distress, and increased work engagement.

Arete EAP users reported greater life satisfaction at follow-up relative to nonEAP users

Improvements in mental health explained the positive impacts of the Arete EAP on workplace functioning.

"Considering the significant impact negative mental health conditions have on employees and their performance, we felt that it was extremely important to have our Arete EAP services independently evaluated in the context of clinical and workplace outcomes," said Allan Stordy, President and CEO of Arete HR Inc. "We are tremendously pleased that the counselling and support we provide through masters and doctoral level affiliate therapists has been proven to improve the mental health of Canadian workers, including those struggling under the weight of anxiety and depression."

"

Previous independent research using Arete HR data linked the use of EAPs with cost savings for employers and the publicly funded

health care system and explored whether the problem resolution achieved by the employee accessing their EAP is reflected in a reduction in disability claims, prescription medication and paramedical use. Arete HR will continue to fund evidence-based research and analysis to better understand the impact of EAPs - to both employees and employers - contributing to the growing body of research on the value of EAPs.

Study methodology: •

This was a quasi-experimental prospective evaluation investigating the impacts of a Canadian EAP on mental health, workplace functioning and life satisfaction

Participants were Canadian employees working at different organizations across the country

Outcomes were compared between groups of EAP (n=152) and non-EAP users (n=152) users matched on numerous baseline variables including demographic, occupational, mental health, workplace functioning and other characteristics and measures

EAP users had access to up to 12 counselling hours per year; non-EAP users did not access such counselling services

Follow-up outcome measurement occurred six months after use of the EAP

To access the full study: https://www. tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/15555240. 2019.1609978 About Arete® HR Inc. Arete HR Inc. improves the well-being of Canadians through excellent employee/ member, business and management assistance programs. All Arete programs offer evidence-based solutions built on independent research results – a differentiator in the mental health/wellness assistance program marketplace. Services for individuals include psychosocial counselling for a wide range of personal issues, legal and financial guidance, plus nutritional, childcare and eldercare support. Support for insurers, corporations, organizations, associations and unions includes strategies for disability prevention, a dedicated curated business support resources website, plus business legal, financial and HR guidance. www.aretehr.com About Workreach Solutions Workreach Solutions (APAS Laboratory Inc.) helps workplace and mental health stakeholders (industry, service providers, employers, and other organizations) generate and implement evidence-based knowledge. Advanced EAP outcome measurement is one of their specialization areas. www.workreachsolutions.com SOURCE Arete Human Resources Inc.

Considering the significant impact negative mental health conditions have on employees and their performance, we felt that it was extremely important to have our Arete EAP services independently evaluated in the context of clinical and workplace outcomes.

"

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BUSINESS SERVICES

Staples Canada Launches Solutionshop, an Innovative

Approach to Design, Printing, Marketing, Shipping and Tech Services

S

Champion of Entrepreneurs and Former Dragon Joe Mimran Kicks-off 'This is How I Grow My Business Contest'

taples Canada, The Working and Learning Company, has transformed its print and tech services business. Solutionshop is taking services to the next level by offering customers a complete marketplace that helps every aspect of a business; including design, printing, marketing, shipping and tech service; available at all 305 Staples locations across Canada and online. "Whether you're a student, teacher, sidehustler, entrepreneur or small business owner, we want Solutionshop to be the place that you turn to for expert advice and support," said Gogi Grewal, Chief Services and Transformation Officer, Staples Canada. Solutionshop offers a rebranded store experience for customers to explore, engage and create every day, with services that include: •

A team of graphic design consultants who support everything from branding and logos to website design and marketing materials

An extensive range of print services, offering same-day printing, next-day delivery, 30 different stock options, wideformat and engineering prints, and a variety of print finishing options

A portfolio of marketing solutions that help small businesses stay in front of their customers, with direct mail advertising, digital marketing powered by Webware. io, and an industry-leading assortment of promotional products

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Access to one of the biggest shipping networks in Canada, thanks to exclusive partnerships with FedEx, Purolator and Xpresspost Certified technicians that deliver Connected Tech solutions to customers in-store, at home or at their office, helping with everything from PC, router and printer setup, as well as data protection and recovery, I CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019

computer maintenance, software installation, virus removal and diagnostics

mentorship opportunity with designer and champion of entrepreneurs, Joe Mimran.

Dedicated Account Managers that help enable business development and solve problems

Ever-expanding suite of professional services that help customers start and grow their businesses, including Staples Business Loans powered by Thinking Capital and Business Registration powered by Corporation Centre

"Work, learn and grow is more than just words, it's driving a core belief that fuels the new Staples Canada," said David Boone, Chief Executive Officer, Staples Canada. "Enriching the lives of entrepreneurs and providing them with our expanded range of products, technology, services and mentorship from Joe Mimran, that's how we can truly walk the walk as trusted and inspiring partners."

"Simply put, Solutionshop is your one-stop destination for all of your services needs to provide your business with the tools necessary to work, learn and grow," continued Grewal.

Calling All Small Businesses: Expert Advice from Champion of Entrepreneurs Joe Mimran The Working and Learning Company is also launching the 'This is How I Grow my Business Contest' as a way of celebrating and supporting entrepreneurs from coast-to-coast. The national contest gives three Canadian small businesses the chance to win a $20,000 prize package that includes new technology and Solutionshop services from Staples Canada, along with a

To learn more about Staples Canada's 'This is How I Grow My Business Contest', visit staples. ca/thisishowi. About Staples Canada/Bureau en Gros Staples Canada is The Working and Learning Company. With a focus on community, inspiration and services, the company is committed to being a dynamic, inspiring partner to customers who visit its 305 locations across the country. A privatelyowned company, Staples Canada is dedicated to helping its customers – entrepreneurs, educators, students and parents – work, learn and grow. Visit staples.ca for more information, or get social with @StaplesCanada on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and LinkedIn. SOURCE Staples Canada ULC


EMPLOYEE RELATIONSHIP

It takes two: Why organizations need to

build balance into their employment relationships There are few more inspiring moments for entrepreneurs than making a new hire— especially if yours is a small, tight-knit team. The promise of performance, of adding a new member to help your organizational culture flourish, and the sheer honeymoon excitement of engaging a new employee makes for an intoxicating moment for business owners and operators.

LAURA WILLIAMS

Throughout the recruitment process, however, promises are made and expectations are raised—and those can create lingering challenges for employers.

As the founder and principal of Williams HR Law Professional Corporation and Williams HR Consulting Inc., Laura boasts more than two decades of experience providing strategic advice and legal representation to employers on a full range of labour and employment law matters. Her core areas of practice include pre-termination advice and strategy, labour relations, workplace safety and insurance, wrongful dismissal litigation, workplace investigations, human rights, disability management, workplace violence and harassment compliance, privacy compliance, employment standards, workplace policies, employment contracts, restrictive covenants and workplace culture recovery. http://www.williamshrlaw.com/

As Canada’s unemployment rate hovers near historic lows and the competition for top talent rages on, organizations are under more pressure than ever to establish their bona -fides as an employer of choice. Many will build employee-friendly workplace environments that offer extensive benefits or entitlements that may or may not be sustainable long -term. At times those perks don’t even support the product or service being delivered. Take flexible working arrangements, which are often not appropriate for organizations that deal directly with the public and need to have certain personnel available to provide services at specific times. In such cases, implementing a work-from-home program would not be a wise move.

Williams HR Law

Every relationship requires balance, and managing the often delicate relations between your organization and its employees is no different. We can all agree that employers must deliver a competitive compensation package to keep pace with industry rivals. That could mean providing everything from careerdevelopment opportunities and employee recognition programs to nap pods and foosball tables, particularly if you’re aiming to hire discerning Millennials who won’t hesitate to shop their services to your rivals. But from the outset of the employment relationship, it should be clear that a certain level of reciprocity is needed for it to work, before outlining exactly what that means in the context of your workplace. The reality is that employment engagements tend to end badly when that balance isn’t maintained and expectations aren’t set up front—including the understanding that the arrangement is

dynamic and will flux with the organization’s needs. Hiring managers and HR teams should make it clear to prospective employees that they’re entering into a professional relationship through an employment agreement, with conduct expectations set out in the organization’s workplace policy manual. Their role and function within the organization must be clear and have meaning to both parties. Now, you may be wondering how any of this is manageable when you’re also trying to operate and grow a business. Indeed, building and maintaining such a robust onboarding system (let alone finding the talent to hire in the first place) can be daunting. That’s why it’s vital to have well-defined systems in place and make sure those processes are applied with every new employee engagement. It’s also important to remember that a strong workplace culture is built on a deliberate embrace of certain core values—then living and breathing them every day. We’ve seen countless organizations position and trumpet their reputation as an employer of choice, perhaps by offering lavish entitlements, only to fritter away that fragile credibility because their workplace reality is out of sync with the brand they’re promoting. Companies that apply for and rank on employer of choice awards, only to have their employees openly question the validity of the recognition due to the major HR issues simmering within the business, are a prime example. In one situation, we learned of an organization that was criticized by a current employee who called out the luxuriousness of their new office interior, gym and staff nap rooms. She pointed out that no one could take advantage of these perks because management was working them to the bone, ignoring employees’ calls for improved work-life balance, which was the one perk they all valued most. In this case, better workplace amenities only made staff resentful. Building a reputation as an employer of choice is important in a tight talent market. So, too, is setting the stage for balanced employment engagements that serve the needs of the organization and position it for success.

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INTERVIEW

Bridging the gap between small business

Eric Groves CEO & Co-Founder of Alignable What would you say was the main inspiration behind the founding of Alignable?

Eric Groves is CEO and co-founder of Alignable.com, the largest online network of small business owners with over 3.5 million members across 30,000 communities in North America. Alignable’s vision is to create a global network marketplace where every small business owner is able to connect, build strong relationships, and gain access to the trusted referrals critical for business success. Prior to Alignable, Groves spent 10 years as a founding executive of Constant Contact leading their go-to-market efforts, and growing the business from a startup to a public company with 400,000 customers and $200MM in revenue. He authored, The Constant Contact Guide to Email Marketing, and is recognized as an expert on engagement marketing, email marketing, and local business. He has appeared on MSNBC’s Your Business and contributes to Small Business Trends, Fast Company, and Yahoo Small Business. Groves holds a B.A. in economics from Grinnell College and an MBA from the University of Iowa.

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We believed we could transform the small business economy in both Canada and the United States by connecting business owners to each other online and enabling them to build more local relationships. These trusted relationships would result in greater local referrals of customers, suppliers, employees, etc., and ultimately make it easier for local businesses to succeed. What this has evolved into is something we call word-of-mouth marketing and it fuels almost everything we do. While we’re thrilled to report that our original concept was right on target, admittedly, there’s still a long way to go until we completely transform the small business economy. But we’re making progress! There are over 3 million members who have connected through Alignable across more than 30,000 communities. I would say that’s a pretty big success. What has been your main strategy to grow Alignable and reach entrepreneurs? Prior to Alignable, small business owners often told us they felt alone and isolated. At the core of our success has been the promise that we’d be a safe place for them to literally meet the business owner across the street, around town, or in their industry. Our growth has been driven by business owners wanting to share this newfound ability with all of the other business owners they know. All of our growth is viral and right this minute, we have more than 3.5 million members with more joining every day. Aside from building a strong network and sharing different ideas and resources, what would you say is the biggest benefit for business owners to join Alignable? Word-of-mouth referrals that lead to strong business relationships. In fact, 86 percent of small business owners say word-of-mouth referrals are their best source of new customers. To generate those types of referrals, you need a network of people willing to put their reputations on the line for you and your business, and you need to regularly post interesting information they’re likely to share. Our Q&A Forum is a

great place to post or answer questions, and help small business owners get to know each other and the expertise they can provide. The Forum is just one of many tools we have to build a comfortable, supportive community that ultimately leads to word-of-mouth referrals. Other great tools are Chat and Group Chat, which have helped to enhance many relationships on the network, allowing members to answer and ask pressing questions, form stronger connections, make referrals, exchange referral cards, promote events, and generally connect on an entirely new level in real time with other business owners. Do you believe that having a strong network can significantly contribute towards the success of a business for entrepreneurs? Why? Yes, because we’ve been able to bring current relationships online and use the digital network to help small business owners make new connections and share advice much more easily. Also, members can use the network to build trust in a whole new way. Everyday small business owners make decisions directly affecting their livelihood. To make these decisions, they depend highly on people with whom they have trusted relationships to give them the advice they need. The larger their network becomes, the greater their access becomes to trusted, truly valuable advice. There’s also a strong undercurrent here where small business owners only trust the advice of other small business owners, as no one else really understands their struggles the way their peers do. In 2014, the decision was made to make Alignable public. What was the deciding factor behind this important decision? When we say we went “public” with the app, we were saying we made the application available for any business owner in North America to use (vs. taking the company public). This decision enabled our members to spread the application across North America and it’s been growing dramatically ever since.


INTERVIEW

What strategies do you use when it comes to deciding which businesses you want to create a partnership? What factors are taken into consideration? We like to work with partners that our members are most likely to recommend to each other. Our members have submitted over 60,000 ratings and reviews of over 100 leading small business brands, so we have a strong indication of the brands they prefer. It’s always interesting to check our Ratings & Reviews page to see the latest thoughts on all sorts of brands catering to small businesses. What has been the biggest challenge that Alignable has faced since it’s launched and how did it overcome it? Like any small business, we’ve faced a wide variety of challenges and every day brings new challenges and opportunities. I’d say our biggest ongoing challenge is making tradeoffs on where to spend our resources. For example, which product features do we work on first and how do we continue to make the application easier to use and more impactful for our members. To find the answers to those questions, we’re in frequent contact with our members to get their feedback. After all, the magic of Alignable is that it’s created to facilitate connections and a higher level of networking leading to word-of-mouth referrals. So, we need to do whatever we can to make our members more successful on our platform. Can you tell us about your favorite success story from one of the members of Alignable that has stayed with you throughout the years? There are many. One of my favorites is when a new member joined and was checking out other members nearby only to find a woman she’d been working out next to for months in a yoga studio. They had no idea they were both small business owners (one an architect, the other an interior designer). After connecting on Alignable, they’re now working together and referring clients to each other on a regular basis. Another great ongoing success story is a digital marketing business run by a very dynamic duo affectionately known around our office as Jenny and Jeff. They say literally 70 per cent of their new business comes from their ongoing prospecting work on Alignable. We recently created a video feature showcasing them, that they tell us has helped to drive even more business, which is exciting to hear.

Pretty much everything about it can become more efficient with a connected network and our goal is to play a central role in making that happen on a global basis! We’re laying the groundwork now for a very expansive future, integrating new, proprietary technology into our platform whenever possible, while also enhancing many aspects of our community offerings. These features include: A popular advice column by a dad-anddaughter duo of entrepreneurs, Dear Abel & Sofi, which offers members the chance to anonymously address their most challenging and personal questions about their small business lives. Then our members weigh in with hundreds, even thousands, of posts with even more great advice. An annual competition that we started earlier this year, searching for the top local Small Businesspeople of the Year, elected by their peers based on their contributions to their small business communities. Ultimately, we honored 2,400 local superstars in communities across Canada and the U.S. It has helped to drive referrals for many winners. Stay tuned for news on next year’s competition. Alignable’s WOW-Worthy SmallBiz Story Search, a new contest to drive more recognition for small business owners through their funniest, craziest, and most inspirational stories. The entry deadline is July 12th, so any of your readers who want to participate should go to our site ASAP! Up-To-The-Minute Polls on a variety of themes that our audience finds important, including hiring trends, financing, economic predictions, and much more. Each of our polls attract votes and commentary from thousands of small business owners, providing the latest, straight-from-MainStreet trends.

"Our Q&A Forum is a great place to post or answer questions, and help small business owners get to know each other and the expertise they can provide. The Forum is just one of many tools we have to build a comfortable, supportive community that ultimately leads to word-of-mouth referrals."

Fast forward 10 years, we anticipate being much larger, with an even wider variety of small business owners across the globe. At that point, it’s our hope that we’ll be seen as the central destination for everything small business owners might require at each stage of the entrepreneurial journey - from launching a solo startup to selling a very successful business.

On a final note, what does the future of Alignable look like? Where do you see it going 10 years from now? Well, the small business economy represents around half our economy, so it’s a big nut to crack. CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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Businesswoman of the month M A R I E

C H E V R I E R

CEO and Founder of Sampler

Marie Chevrier, is the CEO and Founder of Sampler - the leading direct to consumer sampling platform. Marie founded Sampler with a vision to transform the way consumer packaged goods companies distribute product samples and though it started small, Sampler has grown quickly into a booming digital business. Today, her company has been listed as one of Canada’s Fastest Growing startups by Canadian Business and Growth 500 and has received investment from the world’s biggest global beauty manufacturer, L’Oréal. Sampler has worked with some of the top CPG brands in the world like: Unilever, Henkel, Mondelez International, and Kimberly-Clark reaching over 50 million consumers globally in 17 different countries.

What inspired you to found Sampler? What are you hoping to accomplish through it? While in college, I worked with experiential firms where I distributed product samples in grocery stores and on street corners and always felt that product sampling could be a lot more targeted and measurable. Brands, at that point, really didn’t have any idea of who exactly was receiving the samples I was distributing and whether or not that was converting into a purchase. After a few years, I started working at a reputable marketing agency that taught me the ins and outs of digital marketing. Right around that time, I started getting the “entrepreneurial bug” but knew I needed a bit more experience under my belt, so I started working with a venture capital firm where I had the opportunity to be an entrepreneur in residence for a couple of years. A few years and so many lessons later, I decided to come back to Canada and merge my experience in marketing and tech to found Sampler. I knew I wanted to develop a sampling solution that could help brands deliver physical product samples to digitally targeted consumers while gathering the consumer feedback they needed. I drew up an idea of what I wanted Sampler to look like and with 38

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nothing more than a few rough mock ups, I sold my first client before the technology even existed. I had about two months to find a developer to make my ideas come to life, and from there Sampler was born. I’m so proud to say that today we’ve worked with some of the top CPG brands in the world like Unilever, Henkel, Mondelēz International, L'Oréal and Kimberly-Clark and have reached over 50 million consumers globally in 24 different countries. My hope with Sampler is to continue helping brands who’ve been using the same product sampling strategies for decades and have grown to believe that blindly distributing them is as efficient as sampling can get. I want to keep changing the traditional way of distributing samples and continue to build products that optimize the experience of consumers and brands alike on our platform. Sampler is revolutionizing the way companies distribute their products to consumers. Would you say that Sampler demonstrates innovation through its way of doing business? Absolutely! Brands have been handing out product samples the same way for a long time and Sampler was first to offer the market a

solution that could help them change that. The platform offers brands of all sizes and categories the unique opportunity to build personalized relationships with consumers. Not only are brands now able to strategically deliver samples to targeted consumers, but gather the deep insights they need to continue building that relationship and ultimately measure the impact every sample has on purchase. Sampler has quickly grown into a leading company and been recognized as one of Canada’s Fastest Growing startups. What are some of the strategies you used that contribute towards the growth and success of the company? Perhaps one of the best strategies I implemented from the very beginning is selling the product before building it. Even when we started, Sampler had sold a first version of its technology before a single line of code was written. I had convinced a brand to buy with just a few Photoshop mock-ups of what the experience might look like. To this day, we still leverage our customers’ feedback to help prioritize our next area of focus. Secondly, I always say that my two most important customers are my team and my investors. When hiring, I always


BUSINESS WOMAN OF THE MONTH

"Staying focused. With this many customers from so many different categories and different locations, it’s easy to get sidetracked and see every shiny object as a big opportunity. It’s challenging, but crucial to understand that we simply can’t do everything and challenge ourselves to be selective about which opportunities to invest in now versus the ones we should pass on for future."

make sure to ask our potential teammates where they see their career in two, five, and ten years. I find it critical that both the company and the employee have a parallel path. Because Sampler is growing so quickly, I make sure to surround myself with people who are dedicated to growing at an equal pace. I’ve found that surrounding yourself with people who fit well within your company culture is one of the best ways to evolve and improve your business. What sets Sampler apart from other similar organizations? What makes it different? Sampler helps brands develop personalized & direct-to-consumer relationships with the consumers they sample to. We’re also heavily focused on quality over quantity so when brands come to us, they’re looking to build high-value relationships with the most valuable consumer. I find that sampling has traditionally been considered more of a tactic than a long-term strategy for quite a while and we’re changing that. When you initially founded Sampler, did you ever imagine it would grow to this level? I think that to start anything, you need to believe it can become really big. With Sampler, I knew that the opportunity was huge, but I never realized how big of an impact we could have in the industry. When we got into the space five years ago, there really weren’t many players in the game and though our team was small, it was able to play a major role in educating marketers on the power of product sampling in the digital world. The world’s biggest global beauty manufacturer, L’Oréal has partnered up with Sampler and you’ve become the face of the 2018 L’Oréal Innovation Strategy. What does this mean to you? I’ve always been such a huge fan of L'Oréal. Earlier in my career, I actually dreamt of working there as a brand manager. But aside from it being a childhood dream, working with L'Oréal has been

such a pleasure because of how committed they are to innovation. It’s one thing for a brand to say they are investing in innovation but the reality is that most brands do a good job bringing in solutions and not in scaling them. L'Oréal really stands apart on that end and we’ve quickly been able to work with 11 brands in 5 countries under their umbrella. This wouldn’t be possible without clear direction from management to test and learn and for a small company, this level of momentum is so incredibly valuable. Having your clients get this involved in the success of your business and having the opportunity to collaborate and innovate together is very rewarding. Sampler has worked with some of the top CPG brands and reached over 50 million consumers globally in 24 different countries. What would you say has been the most challenging part of that? Staying focused. With this many customers from so many different categories and different locations, it’s easy to get sidetracked and see every shiny object as a big opportunity. It’s challenging but crucial to understand that we simply can’t do everything and challenge ourselves to be selective about which opportunities to invest in now versus the ones we should pass on for future. The company is known for its diverse and inclusive workplace. Not only are 59 per cent of your employees women, but 54 per cent are also a visible minority. Why are you putting such an importance of diversity? Do you believe it’s crucial to the success of the business? I am personally very passionate about encouraging more diversity in technology and entrepreneurship and I hope that in my small way I can move the needle there. I think it’s extremely important because the best ideas come from personal experiences and healthy debate. If I surrounded myself with people that looked like me and had similar personal and professional

backgrounds than me, I would have likely built something very different. Providing an inclusive workplace for my team has been a beautiful thing to be a part of and it’s become a way of doing my part in the world. As the founder and CEO of Sampler, what is the biggest challenge you’ve faced and how did you overcome it? The challenges change everyday so it’s hard to point one out specifically but I’d sum it up as “keeping my stamina”. My husband always reminds me, “Marie, it’s a marathon not a sprint” and he’s so right. It can be very easy to cram ten meetings in a day or to take on more than you can chew, but proper time management is vital. Finding the perfect balance between spending time with the team, meeting with clients, thinking time, and personal down time is incredibly important and though it’s easier said than done, it’s something I’m constantly aiming for. On a final note, did you always know you wanted to become an entrepreneur? Was it your dream growing up to start a business? It wasn’t always a dream of mine but looking back it was definitely something I was destined to be. I come from the hardest working family you’ll ever meet. My grandmother and grandfather were entrepreneurs, they owned several businesses in their life and to this day my grandma asks me how she might sell her knitting projects on Etsy. I myself showed a lot of entrepreneurial traits growing up. I was always the one organizing the school social activities, I was the president of my university sorority and I was always the annoying person challenging the teacher in school. But, I didn’t really know anything about technology or what it took to become a successful entrepreneur. This is exactly why I think it’s important for us to actively inspire others to follow suit even when they might not initially think of themselves as entrepreneurs.

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INTERVIEW

Marriott Hotel breaks into new ground Hiren Prabhakar

General Manager of the Toronto Marriott Markham In the world of hospitality, Hiren Prabhakar has seen it all. A globetrotting GM with an impressive resume of launching luxury properties in countries as diverse as Russia, Zambia, and Dubai, Mr. Prabhakar has built a storied career off a knack for motivating his teams to deliver on a cohesive vision. He credits his success – which defies borders and language – to a commitment towards immersion: immersion within the company culture, yes, but also a profound respect for the cultures in which his properties have earned guest loyalty. When Mr. Prabhakar joined Marriott in 2014, he was tasked with applying every ounce of his guest-oriented philosophy and expertise to a completely novel challenge: managing the launch of the Toronto Marriott Markham, a new Marriott property with a cutting-edge concept that opened its doors in April of 2018. In the time since, the Marriott Markham has enjoyed significant success, with Mr. Prabhakar attributing its consistent traffic to “the vision & foresight of Marriott and the hotel ownership and to an outstanding team both on property and above involved tirelessly to make the launch a huge success.”

As the General Manager of the Toronto Marriott Markham, what are some of the initiatives you’re hoping to put in place in the hospitality industry? We have opened the first new-build Redesigned Marriott Hotel in Canada catering to the inventive class of guests. The Toronto Marriott Markham has set the benchmark for design and technology for Marriott in Canada. Giving opportunities to our associates is part of our CORE, and we have put together an outstanding team who were part of the hotel opening. The property just opened its doors to the public over a year ago. What has the first year been like for the establishment? We have had an excellent opening year and have been welcomed in the business community and have become the hub of Downtown Markham. A 40

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lot of thought and planning have gone into the Downtown Markham area, and we are excited to be part of this. We have seen good pace in capturing our market share and have created our niche in events and conference segment of the business

Bill Marriott Jr.'s favorite word is "more", and Arne Sorenson believes in "more, faster." To win the loyalty of our customers and become the best, we have to continually build a culture that embraces innovation and risk-taking while remaining true to who we are and taking care of our most valuable asset, our people.

You’re no stranger to management. In fact, over the years you’ve managed several luxury properties around the world. How do you believe this experience has prepared you for your current role at the Marriott?

The Marriott is obviously a popular well trusted and respected brand. How do you believe this new establishment will stand out all the while staying true to the Marriott brand?

At the CORE we at Marriott take care of our associates and believe that if you take care of our associates they will take care of our guests who will keep coming back. We believe in giving opportunities in the community and to our transferable associates who share our vision and are part of our success.

The Toronto Marriott Markham is the first newbuild Redesigned Marriott Hotel in Canada featuring the latest design concepts for the brand. With the Redesigned Marriott product, our Great Room Lobby and signature M Club Concierge Lounge blends form and function. Our room product features modern aesthetics


INTERVIEW

"Canada is one of our top 5 markets. We have a multicultural team that shares the Marriott culture which is our biggest differentiator. At the Toronto Marriott Markham, we have 18 countries represented by our Associates. Leading this multi-cultural team has been a fulfilling experience and several of our team have been nominated and won awards within Marriott."

and accommodates today’s technological savvy travelers with Mobile Check-In / keyless entry and Netflix integration in our in-room entertainment system. Lastly, our NextGen event space encourages collaboration, and satisfies today’s technological requirements with built-in audio visual technology. Combining our product with Marriott’s strong service culture makes the Toronto Marriott Markham stand out in today’s competitive landscape.

choice. Our guests have many preferences, and therefore, they desire options. With Marriott, there are 30 brands to choose from and each brand has its own unique characteristics, features, and values. Within our portfolio and 7,000 properties worldwide, there is truly something for every type of traveler. What is even better is now our guests can collect points and stay credits for all of our hotels worldwide with our Marriott Bonvoy loyalty program.

How do you see the Canadian hospitality industry and how do you believe your unique global perspective can help improve it?

What is the biggest challenge you face as the General Manager of an up and coming establishment?

Canada is one of our top 5 markets. We have a multi-cultural team that shares the Marriott culture which is our biggest differentiator. At the Toronto Marriott Markham, we have 18 countries represented by our Associates. Leading this multi-cultural team has been a fulfilling experience and several of our team have been nominated and won awards within Marriott.

Opening a hotel is an experience in itself the bond that you share with your team is everlasting. We at Marriott have an entire department that is deployed for hotel openings. This is a team of experts that travel from one hotel opening to another with a 28-day and 14-day schedule leading up to the hotel opening day. They make sure that the hotel is set up for success from the day we open. In addition, we have been very fortunate to have an excellent partner in the hotel ownership which has led to the phenomenal success of our hotel.

With our diverse group of associates, we are able to understand and service the needs of our global travelers, Be it welcoming them to our hotel in their own language or placing their cultural snack in the room prior to their arrival, providing a home away from home welcome. For Marriott in Canada, we are looking to grow our luxury hotel portfolio with the first St. Regis Hotel in Canada that opened in Downtown Toronto last year. There is untapped potential in the luxury hotel segment in Canada, and our company is looking to expand its presence in this unique and important segment. In your expert opinion, what area of the Canadian hospitality industry needs the most improvement? Marriott has a healthy growth pipeline and we are looking to fill positions in all our new openings. In the past 2 years, we have revitalized our Canadian University Relations team that have partnered with leading Canadian colleges and universities and placed more than 200 college and university hospitality students in our managed hotels across Canada. We understand that with growth comes the need to fill our hotels with the right talent.

Toronto Marriott Markham 170 Enterprise Boulevard Markham, Ontario L6G 0E6 +1 905-489-1400

Having managed a wide range of luxury properties across the word, you’ve come across several different industry trends. What would you say is the most popular trend in the hospitality industry at the moment?

What are your predictions for the Canadian hospitality industry? Where do you see it heading in the future? Looking at the trends in our industry, Marriott has entered into the home rental space with Homes & Villas by Marriott International. Guests now have access to book more than 2,000 premium and luxury homes and villas in over 100 destinations across the United States, Europe, the Caribbean, and Latin America with each property offering the space and amenities of a home and supported by the reputable Marriott International brand. In addition, as the company continues to analyze trends and traveler preferences, the company has launched the Redesigned Marriott and is working towards a significant transformation with the iconic Sheraton brand. On a final note, what has been the biggest accomplishment of your professional career? What are you most proud of? The integration of 2 of big hotel brands (Starwood and Marriott) and being able to participate in the journey has been a very satisfying accomplishment. The launch of our new loyalty program Marriott Bonvoy earlier this year and seeing the positive impact it has made in our business has been a fantastic and rewarding experience.

In my opinion, the most popular trend is CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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BUSINESS PHONE

Top 5 Best Phone Plans for Your Business

B

eing an entrepreneur is a full-time job. As a business owner, you’re often required to wear several hats. And what better way to effectively manage your tasks then by having the right telephone service. While some entrepreneurs would rather not share their phone number publicly, it could actually be good for your business to provide one to your customers. Giving clients the possibility to contact you will not only make your clients trust you more, but it can lead to new opportunities and business growth. However, it’s extremely important to keep your personal line and business line separate. Even though you’re in the startup phase of your business, having a business line separate from your personal line should be one of the first decisions you make. It’s important to keep a clear boundary between your personal and professional life and having a business line can significantly help make that happen.

With several different companies offering phone services for your business, we’ve narrowed down our top 5 picks that we believe are the best for your business.

1

Vonage

4

Phone.com The ideal choice for small business owners. Their simple and easy to use web and app-based administration panel offers standard phone services such as caller ID, voicemail and call forwarding. Their phone plans work either pay per minute or unlimited. Their pay per minute plans start at $12.99 per month and their unlimited plans start at $22.99 per month.

A popular choice among several entrepreneurs for their exceptional phone services. With several options when it comes to phone features, Vonage makes it easy for business owners to communicate and manage their calls effectively and efficiently. Their cloud VOIP services and their function of Amazon Chime which is put in place to facilitate online meetings and video conferences is among some of the favorite features for entrepreneurs. Another reason why it’s a popular choice among business owners is due to their no-hassle set-up feature that makes it easy to add new users and manage calls. Plans start at $19.99 and go up to $39.99 Website: www.vonage.com

Website: www.phone.com

2

GrassHopper One of the best choices for small business owners and solopreneurs. They offer virtual phone numbers over VOIP phone services, meaning that all incoming calls can be forwarded to any number or device. An important factor to consider is that entrepreneurs will still require to have a regular phone line service for any outgoing calls they wish to make. Their web and mobile app makes it easy for business owners to manage their account and offers the possibility of using several extensions from local, toll free and vanity phone numbers available in Canada, U.S and the UK. Their standard features include call forwarding, routing, waiting, hold music, voicemail and so much more. GrassHopper plans start at $29.99/month. Website: www.grasshopper.com

3

Nextiva Nextiva is the best option when it comes to getting more for your money. Their features and easy-to-use system is the main reason why it’s one of the most popular phone services for business owners. With their never-ending list of features and fast setup, entrepreneurs will be able to use and manage their platform like experts in no time. Nextiva also offers VOIP phone service that include advanced call routing, unlimited free domestic calling, and voicemail to email and text just to name a few. Nextiva is definitely the phone service if you’re looking to get the most features and services at affordable pricing. Their monthly plans start at $19.95. Website: www.nextiva.com

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5

RingCentral RingCentral is a popular choice for business owners of all sizes. One of the most feature-rich phone services on the market at the moment, RingCentral offers all the standard features similar to other phone services along with extra features. Video meetings with screen sharing 1000 toll-free minutes, Dropbox and Microsoft combinations are just some of the additional services available. Their web-based administration makes it easy for entrepreneurs to manage their calls. Phone plans start at $19.99. Website: www.ringcentral.com


Becoming Your Own Boss

BUSINESS

It’s easier than you think to become a business owner in a franchise model Making the decision to invest in becoming a business owner is not one to be taken lightly.

STEVE TALLIS

Co-founder of Starks Barber Company Steve Tallis is the co-founder of Starks Barber Company, a chain of barber shops he launched in 2013 with a childhood friend. The concept was ‘a modern take on the traditional barber shop’ and has since evolved into locations across the GTA. In 2016 they launched Starks Gentlemen’s Supply; a line of premium men’s grooming products that are made in Canada.

There is, quite frankly, a lot at risk. But there is also greater reward opportunities — and a better lifestyle that may include things like more free time and a reduced commute. If you do the research and invest wisely, there is incredible value —personally, professionally and financially — in taking bold steps forward on your own. Your opportunity can be amplified if you jump into the business world via a franchise arrangement. “People thinking about starting out in a new business are often scared of losing their shirts, but they don't know how easy it is to start a franchise, and they don’t realize there are great governmentbacked financing programs that significantly reduce their risk exposure,” says Steve Tallis, co-founder of Starks Barber Company, and the man in charge of franchise development for the company. “They don’t see how easy it can be to succeed if you have a good model and are willing to work at it. People get intimidated by owning their own business, and yes, it can be intimidating. But the beauty of buying a franchise is you are buying support. We’re going to show you how to do everything and run the business successfully.” There are currently three Starks Barber Company locations owned by Tallis and his business partner Ryan McLachlan — in Yonge Lawrence Village on Yonge Street in Toronto, in Unionville and a new store that just opened in Brooklin, north of Whitby. Its first franchise store is opening later this summer in Stouffville.

Starks Barber Company offers traditional barber services in an upscale and sophisticated setting. Using top quality products and skilled stylists, Starks caters to the discerning man with a full menu of services that includes haircuts, hot towel shaves, clay mask, straight razor detailing, beard and moustache care, eyebrow waxing/trim, manicures and colouring.

When considering getting into the franchise game, Steve and Ryan offer the following tips: KNOW YOURSELF — Before you make any rash decisions, know what it is you are looking for. Are you investing in a franchise to give yourself a job? Is it for income replacement? Are you looking for a particular lifestyle? If you don't like working nights, a bar probably isn’t for you. Before jumping into the franchise journey, know what kind of lifestyle you are looking for, and choose your options accordingly. GET IN ON THE GROUND FLOOR — The more established a brand is, the more expensive and restrictive it is likely to be. There is an unspoken maxim in the franchise sector — if you have heard of them, it may be too late to get into the game. An emerging brand is more likely to net you a better location or territory, a better franchise agreement and more opportunities for growth and expansion in the future.

CONSIDER THE COMPETITION — With the proliferation of online shopping, the risks are greater for those considering opening up a store — online retail behemoths are destroying that business model. Look to industries and sectors that are “tech proof” — a service or experience that people can’t just buy online, and are likely to always need (like a haircut). IT’S NOT AS HARD AS YOU THINK — There is a common misconception that getting financing for a franchise is time consuming and prohibitive, but it really isn’t. The Canadian Small Business Financing Program was designed to help entrepreneurs get their ideas off the ground. The program is available at all the major Canadian banks, and the Federal Government assumes 85 per ce of the risk, which is a nice incentive for both the aspiring entrepreneur and the lender. LOOK FOR SUPPORT — The franchise agreement is important, and will dictate how much support you will have in getting your business off the ground. It’s hard to be good inside your four walls, and be really good at the marketing and external efforts required for success. In a sound franchise structure, the franchisor will take on much of the external marketing and support, allowing the business owner to focus on building the business. There is peace of mind that the brand is doing work for you as you build up a customer base. BE PART OF A STRONG TEAM — Don't look just to the franchisor; other franchisees have been there and an environment where best practices are shared is the place you want to be. You won't be left all alone and will be able to learn from the mistakes of others. It will also help to know a bit about the business you want to get into. “When we speak to prospective Starks franchisees, we talk about the market we are serving,” says McLachlan. “We came upon this business model because we found men weren’t feeling like they belonged in a salon environment. The old school barbershop was dated and not up to trend. We also found that men are loyal; when they find something they like, they will hang around for a long time.” For more information, please visit starksbarbercompany.com. Follow Starks Barber Company on Instagram @starksbarberco, Twitter @StarksBarberCo and Facebook at / StarksBarberCompany. Check out their YouTube Channel Starks TUBE. CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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LUXURY

The New 2020 BMW M8 Coupé and M8 Cabriolet

• 600 hp M8 Coupé and M8 Cabriolet • 617 hp M8 Competition Coupé and Competition Cabriolet variants • 0 – 100 km/h in as quick as 3.2 seconds and top speed up to 300 km/h • Production to begin July 2019 • Pricing to be announced closer to the Canadian market launch in the third quarter of 2019

R

ichmond Hill, ON. BMW M GmbH is pleased to introduce the new 2020 M8 Coupé and Cabriolet, the new top performance models in the M brand’s lineup. Available in standard and Competition variants, the new M cars take the proven M5 and M5 Competition supercar capabilities to an even higher level while offering all of the luxury and styling that the 8 Series has to offer. The launch of the new M8 is unique in that the race car made its appearance almost two years before the production street vehicles will be available in showrooms. In those past two years of testing and racing in the IMSA WeatherTech Sports Car Championship, the BMW M8 GTE collected three victories, including the prestigious 24 Hours of Daytona, four additional podium finishes and three pole positions. The data collected from the on-going racing program helped develop settings for the new BMW M8 road going car.

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LUXURY

S63 V8 Power and Performance The high-revving (7,200 rpm redline) 4.4 liter S63 M TwinPower Turbo V8 produces 600 hp @ 6,000 rpm and 553 lb-ft of torque @ 1,800 – 5,600 rpm in the M8 Coupé and Cabriolet while the M8 Competition models feature an uprated power unit producing 617 hp @ 6,000 rpm and 553 lb-ft @ 1,800 – 5,800 rpm.

Eight-speed M Steptronic transmission with Drivelogic The eight-speed M Steptronic transmission transfers the M8’s power to the M xDrive all-wheel drive system. The transmission is operated via the new gear selector lever or with the M gearshift paddles on the steering wheel. Both automatic and manual modes are available. The Drivelogic button allows the driver to select the comfort and speed of gear shifts from comfort-oriented to sport and track focused shifting.

M xDrive all-wheel drive and Active M differential The M xDrive intelligent rear-biased all-wheel drive system makes the most use of the new BMW M8’s power and torque to increase performance to supercar levels. The engine’s torque is distributed between the front and rear wheels via the transfer case’s electronically-controlled multi-plate clutch before the Active M differential splits the power between the two rear wheels as needed.

New Setup button and M mode. The BMW M8 features a new single setup button, found in the center console, which enables control over the engine, suspension,

steering and xDrive settings, all of which featured individual control buttons in past M cars. The new setup button now also includes control over the integrated braking system with its Comfort and Sport modes. Pressing the setup button brings up the setup screen on the center display and allows various settings to be chosen and saved to the steering wheel-mounted M1 and M2 buttons. Available Settings include: • Engine characteristics – Efficient, Sport and Sport Plus. • Suspension characteristics – Comfort, Sport and Sport Plus • Steering characteristics – Comfort and Sport • Braking characteristics – Comfort and Sport • 4WD settings – 4WD, 4WD Sport and 2WD

Exterior design and features The functional details of the new BMW M8 Coupé and Cabriolet support the performance capabilities of the new cars as much as they lend themselves to design. Large openings in the front bumper support increased engine, transmission and brake cooling requirements while also imparting an aggressive visual to the newest M vehicles.

Interior The new M8 features exclusive interior appointments to set the cars apart as vehicles that occupy the very top of BMW’s model lineup. The M leather steering wheel includes M shift paddles and red M1 and M2 buttons which can be programmed with various engine,

suspension, steering, xDrive and braking system modes. A new design gear shift lever with red accent sits next to the red start/stop button in the center console. Exclusive M Sport seats with Illuminated M badging below the headrest area are standard. The M8 Driver Assist systems Competition models additionally feature M seatbelts with highlight stitching in BMW Motorsport colors. The 2020 BMW M8 is available with a wide variety of standard and optional driver assistance systems. The systems really come into their own when driving longer distances by relieving the strain on the driver in monotonous situations, such as traffic jams or slow-moving traffic. They enhance comfort and safety both in urban traffic and on longer trips by providing targeted assistance in complex traffic situations. The driver assistance systems process camera images as well as the data gathered by ultrasonic and radar sensors to monitor the vehicle’s surroundings, to warn of potential hazards and to minimise the risk of an accident with corrective braking or steering inputs.

The latest-generation Head-Up Display. The latest generation of the BMW Head-Up display system features a larger projection area, optimized graphics and additional content. The BMW HeadUp Display projects information directly into the driver’s field of vision where it can be assimilated without any need for them to divert their eyes from the road. This includes details of vehicle speed, speed limits and overtaking restrictions, Check Control messages, status indicators and warnings from the assistance systems, detailed route guidance and turn instructions, as well as telephone and entertainment lists. The displayed information can be adjusted via the new M mode button on the center console.

Live Cockpit Professional with iDrive 7 The BMW Live Cockpit Professional in the 2020 BMW M8 combines the latest-generation of the iDrive, featuring a high-resolution digital 31.2 cm (12.3”) instrument cluster display behind the steering wheel and a 26 cm (10.25”) center display diagonally across.

BMW Connected: digital services for individual mobility. BMW Connected is the companion app for BMW drivers. Intelligent connectivity helps users to reach their destination easily and with minimal stress – and not only from within their car; BMW Connected is an all-embracing concept designed to seamlessly connect the driver and their smartphone with their vehicle.

CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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ESTATE PLANNING

If effective estate planning is a must for any ENTREPRENEUR, why are so many unprepared? Death and taxes are two topics that no entrepreneur likes to discuss. Unfortunately, they go hand in hand and, as the saying goes, are both inevitable. With more business owners across Canada at or nearing retirement, their attention is shifting to passing assets to the next generation.

ARMANDO IANNUZZI

Tax Partner at KRP

Armando Iannuzzi is a tax partner at KRP LLP, a Markham, Ont.-based accounting firm for entrepreneurs. Learn more at www.krp.ca

Indeed, as the ranks of the Baby Boom Generation begin to thin, Canada is experiencing the greatest transfer of wealth in the country’s history. While estimates vary, Boomers are in the process of passing along at least $750 billion in assets to their children. PwC Canada data shows that 70 per cent of private business owners are planning to sell or transfer their companies in the next five years. Unfortunately, most Canadians aren’t ready for the Grim Reaper’s arrival. An Angus Reid survey released last year found that 51 per cent of Canadians lack a will, and only 35 per cent have a will that is up to date. Why? Twenty-five per cent claim they’re too young to bother, while 23 per cent say they lack the assets to justify drawing up a will. The reality is that many in the entrepreneurial community are just as unprepared as rankand-file Canadians. That’s because they’re so laser-focused on starting, managing and growing their businesses that they forget to plan for their eventual demise. For entrepreneurs, lacklustre estate planning is simply not an option. They not only have their personal finances to consider, but also the future of their business and the potential nightmare scenario they leave family members or business partners in the event of an untimely—or ill-prepared—passing. Pre-mortem estate and succession planning is the only effective way to avoid a range of challenges from unnecessarily high taxation, to probate delays and conflict or uncertainty over who controls the business. Estate planning is a multi-faceted process that takes time and careful planning to properly manage. I’ll spend the next two articles outlining pre- and post-mortem succession strategies—with a heavy emphasis on taxplanning—but not before exploring the

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two most fundamental estate planning considerations. The first is being proactive and assembling a team of trusted professionals who can help you manage the complex process of putting your personal and corporate affairs in order. This should include a chartered accountant, a wills and estate lawyer and a financial planner with experience in the field. And be sure to put them in direct communication. All too often plans are made in isolation, such as a lawyer designing a will without consulting an accountant on the most tax-efficient planning strategies. Your team should be collaborating at every stage to ensure your plan is customized to your unique circumstances. The other fundamental consideration: is having a will in the first place. While an obvious point, as the data show, it’s one that’s often overlooked. Owners of corporations should have dual wills; doing so will help mitigate probate fees. If there are several owners of the same corporation you should ensure that there is a proper shareholders’ agreement in place that deals with a death of a shareholder and how that shareholder’s estate will be compensated on a buy/sell. Will your business partner take full control when you die? If you’re the sole owner, perhaps it will be your children or another family member such as a spouse? But do they want to? We’ve seen many companies passed on to children who lack the interest or expertise to continue its operation. Many times a pre-mortem sale of the business is the best strategy to maximize taxplanning opportunities, minimize inter-family squabbling and ensure that your wishes are carried out to the letter. Whatever way it’s structured, having a will with a power of attorney and a well-defined succession plan in place is a must for every entrepreneur—no matter their age. In the next article in August, I’ll delve into the intricacies of pre-mortem estate planning.


Ted Baker London Parals Leather Derbys

Contemporary style in rich premium leathers with subtle interest details that elevate these derbys.

ERMENEGILDO ZEGNA Torino Suit

BUSINESS CLASS

Precisely tailored in a slim silhouette, the Torino suit boasts a roped shoulder, high arm holes, and trim pant. Their premium AchillFarm wool is blended with silk and finished with a crosshatch pattern that exudes laid-back elegance. The sophisticated two-piece ensures a confident and masculine presence that is quintessentially Ermenegildo Zegna. Convey professionalism and complete the look with a timeless tie and crisp collared shirt. Available at : www.harryrosen.com

• Leather upper • Almond toe • Lace-up vamp • Leather lining • Padded insole • Rubber and leather sole • Imported Available at: www.thebay.com

Canali The Kei jacket goes from strength to strength with every passing season – it’s so comfortable and light, and it has such a natural silhouette. This year, Harry Rosen is launching Canali sportswear in all its stores, including soft, fine cotton piqué knits like this one, in a variety of colours. Available at : www.harryrosen.com

Montblanc Westside Briefcase Single Gusset

Montblanc Explorer Eau de Parfum Montblanc Explorer is an invitation to a fantastic journey, an irresistible call to adventure. This unconventional woody aromatic leather Eau de Parfum reveals a fresh green Italian Bergamot, contrasted with a powerful Vetiver from Haiti, and combined with rich and exclusive Patchouli from Sulawesi. Be prepared to discover new horizons. Woody leathery aromatic. 100 ml. Made in France.

Available at: www.thebay.com

This sleek design from Montblanc combines effortless style with versatile functionality. Excellently crafted from pure Italian leather, it's a well organized briefcase with designated room for your mobile phone, documents and writing instruments. The Westside features a comfortable top handle with the option of a shoulder strap, perfect for morning walks to the office. Available at : www.harryrosen.com

CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

47


STARTUP

Starting Up? Have a Day One Growth Mindset Authors: Gautam Lohia and Chris Coghlan

CHRIS COGHLAN Co-Founder at Apply Digital

Chris Coghlan, leads global business development with a goal to uncover the best opportunities for his team to apply their craft. He brings strong marketing, product and digital thought leadership to Apply. Before Apply, Chris was co-founder & CEO of Blitzoo Interactive, a digital product development firm that was acquired in February 2016. Prior to that, Chris was EVP Client Development for Blast Radius where he helped forge long-term partnerships with some of the world’s strongest brands.

You’ve got a great idea and want to start your own business. With so much competition these days, how do you make sure your company succeeds? While my business partner Chris Coghlan and I didn’t know our exact path when we started our latest venture about 3 years ago, adopting a Day One Growth Mindset helped us and our company build the success we have today. Stanford professor Dr. Carol Dweck, in her pioneering psychology work, summarizes her findings on people with the growth mindset as: “Individuals who believe their talents can be developed (through hard work, good strategies, and input from others)...They tend to achieve more than those with a more fixed mindset (those who believe their talents are innate gifts).” Our goal from day one of our new venture was to establish a digital product studio to produce globally-recognized work for international clients. In order to achieve that goal, we embraced the Day One Growth Mindset in three ways: 1

GAUTAM LOHIA

Co-founder Apply Digital

Gautam Lohia, oversees client management and operations at Apply. He loves building technologies, teams and partnerships. As a passionate but soft-spoken leader, Gautam is always ready to roll up his sleeves and guide his team through the most challenging situations. Gautam believes successful products focus on providing results rather than features.

2

3

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We acknowledged we don’t know enough: we admitted we will never know enough as individuals, but through constant learning and collaboration with others, we’ve been able to nurture an infinite collective knowledge that enables our company to flourish. We vowed to always be ambitious: growing and developing wasn’t enough to help our company succeed. We also needed the desire to grow. On the very first day of our new venture, Chris and I set some pretty lofty targets, and those are the targets that keep us moving forward. We resolved to be ultra flexible: in an industry that is endlessly evolving, adaptability and swiftness are key. For our business to consistently deliver successful solutions, we must continually

try out new methods, test new technologies, and be responsive, elastic, and resilient. We believe anyone—from our clients and team members to new business owners and young professionals—can adopt a Day One Growth Mindset using these simple yet effective business strategies:

Hire the right people Surround yourself with people who have a desire and capacity to learn. People you trust. People who enjoy the challenge of overcoming obstacles, who want to influence an industry. Seek out people who are synergistic thinkers and doers. We started by building a strong leadership team and then scaled up our roster of specialized talent.

Reward positive behavior Recognize employees who achieve their goals, and also recognize those who put in the effort. Emphasize learning, reflection, and progress just as much as success and achievement. Understand that failure is an essential part of growth and can be a positive learning opportunity for the whole company.

Build a culture of learning Provide each of your team members with a learning budget to use at their discretion, and encourage them to share their learning with others. At Apply Digital, we also organize company-wide Days of Learning and hold a weekly platform where team members can share their knowledge.

Use scalable systems Having a Day One Growth Mindset means investing in scalable systems. While the upfront cost of such systems might be high, the long-term benefits are immense. For example, our back-office is automated, efficient, and will allow us to easily scale for the next 3 years.

Leverage your networks Growth, knowledge, and opportunity can come from anywhere. Your network is a goldmine


of possibilities. Over the past three decades both Chris and I have built up a wide network of friends and acquaintances. To support our growth mandate, we utilize these important relationships not only to target potential clients, but also to identify potential partners and employees.

Stay ambitious Growth flourishes when you step outside your comfort zone. Establish two sets of goals: those you know you can achieve, and those you hope you can achieve. Then forget about the former and passionately pursue the latter with an ambitious attitude that inspires all of your decisions as you move your company forward.

Grow for the right reasons Growth is an essential part of any company’s success. But it’s not just about doing good business, it’s about doing good for your people.

People are a company’s key asset and if you grow with your people as the focus, they'll stick with you every step of the way.

Know when to say “No” It can be hard to say “no” when you’re first starting out, but knowing when to say it is instrumental to upholding a growth mindset. For example, we’ve said “no” to things like: •

well-paying opportunities that don't fit our service offerings

well-qualified candidates who don't share our values

temporary solutions (because they often create more problems in the long term).

Knowing when to say “no” helps keep our company tracking in the right direction.

company Apply Digital celebrated its three-year anniversary in March 2019. A successful venture employing 75 people in three businesses, our clients include brands like Disney, Freedom Mobile, and AGI. We credit it all to having a Day One Growth Mindset. It hasn’t always been easy, however. We’ve often had to step out of our comfort zone and make hard decisions. But we’re prepared to take the risks because this ideology has proven its benefits for us time and again. If you’re looking for ways to grow and energize your company, consider adopting a Day One Growth Mindset. It has inspired our business decisions well beyond our company’s initial years and will always be an integral part of our future planning strategies as we continue to grow.

Just a seed of an idea in December 2015, our

Learn how over 250 B2B companies have increased leads by 30-100% Contact us today to get on the path to accelerate sales and profit growth. Call us: 416-583-5831

themezzaninegroup.com

CANADIANSME MAGAZINE I JULY 2019 I

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EMPLOYMENT UPDATE

Canada's job vacancies rate sets new record:

435,000 jobs go unfilled in Q1 2019 Canada's private sector job vacancy rate advanced again in the first quarter of the year, reaching 3.3 per cent, up 0.1 percentage point from the previous quarter, according to the Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB)'s latest Help Wanted report. In total, 435,000 jobs sat vacant for at least four months during the first quarter of 2019. "The national vacancy rate has been steadily climbing for the past two years and it reached another record high last quarter," said Ted Mallett, CFIB's vice-president and chief economist. "The rate of growth is slowing compared to this time last year, but employers in Quebec, BC and Ontario are having a harder and harder time finding workers, especially in the smallest businesses." In most provinces, labour shortages were a bigger concern for skilled positions rather than semi-or unskilled ones. Vacancy rates exerted a

strong pressure on wage levels—employers with at least one vacant position expected that they would increase average organization-wide wage levels by 2.2 per cent, compared to 1.3 per cent for those with no vacant posts.

Job vacancies by province Quebec maintained the highest job vacancies rate in the country at 4.1 per cent, a 0.1 per cent increase over last quarter. British Columbia (3.6 per cent) and Ontario (3.3 per cent) followed, each advancing by 0.1 per cent. Vacancy rates in Saskatchewan (2.3 per cent), Newfoundland and Labrador (1.9 per cent) and Prince Edward Island (1.8 per cent) advanced but remained below the national average. Rates in New Brunswick (2.8 per cent) and Manitoba (2.4 per cent) remained unchanged, while those in Nova Scotia (2.3 per cent) and Alberta (2.1 per cent) fell by 0.1 per cent.

Provinces

Vacancy rate

Change

Unfilled jobs

Quebec

4.1%

+0.1%

120,800

British Columbia

3.6%

+0.1%

69,400

Ontario

3.3%

+0.1%

174,800

New Brunswick

2.8%

6,600

Manitoba

2.4%

10,400

Saskatchewan

2.3%

+0.1%

8,000

Nova Scotia

2.3%

-0.1%

7,000

Alberta

2.1%

-0.1%

33,800

Newfoundland & Labrador

1.9%

+0.1%

2,800

Prince Edward Island

1.8%

+0.1%

900

Job vacancies by industry

About CFIB

Vacancy rates in construction (4.9 per cent) and personal services (4.7 per cent) outpaced all other industries and the national average. Businesses in agriculture (3.8 per cent), hospitality (3.7 per cent), professional services (3.6 per cent) and transportation (3.6 per cent) also faced tight labour markets. Overall, vacancy rates advanced in all sectors, except for manufacturing (3 per cent), oil and gas (2.3 per cent), finance (2.1 per cent) and information (1.9 per cent), which saw no change.

The Canadian Federation of Independent Business (CFIB) is Canada's largest association of small and medium-sized businesses with 110,000 members across every industry and region. CFIB is dedicated to increasing business owners' chances of success by driving policy change at all levels of government, providing expert advice and tools, and negotiating exclusive savings. Learn more at cfib.ca.

For information on the overall results by province and industry, please consult the Q1 2019 Help Wanted report.

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SOURCE Canadian Federation of Independent Business


Conceptual image only, subject to change.

A NEW SICKKIDS WILL RISE. This is Phase 1: the new Patient Support Centre (PSC). Phase 2 will be building a new, state-of-the-art Patient Care Centre (PCC) that lifts, not limits care. Thanks to donors who believe that twenty-first century medicine needs to be practiced in twenty-first century buildings, we are over halfway to our fundraising goal of $1.3 billion. The PSC is where a transformed SickKids begins. Join us.

SickKids

Limits


www.smeexpo.ca January 20, 2020 Toronto, Canada Metro Toronto Convention Centre

Photo by Banter Snaps on Unsplash

Profile for CanadianSME

CanadianSME July Edition  

The heat is on and the small business industry is in full bloom. With more SMEs being launched on a daily basis more than ever before, Canad...

CanadianSME July Edition  

The heat is on and the small business industry is in full bloom. With more SMEs being launched on a daily basis more than ever before, Canad...