April 2021 Volume 3 Issue 8

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Volume 3 Issue 8 • April 2021

published by ZX Media Corporation

SHIFTING PERSPECTIVES Now more than ever, innovation plays a critical role in defining Alberta’s future. Alberta Innovates leads the way by bringing people and resources together to help Alberta businesses grow, create new opportunities and jobs, and solve challenges. Through our world-class expertise, leadingedge facilities and strategic investments, we’re charting the course of innovation that will help renew and sustain Alberta’s prosperity

today, and for generations to come.

Learn how albertainnovates.ca

Clean Resources

Agriculture, Forestry & Food

Emerging Technologies

Health Innovation




“Don’t worry about being successful but work toward being significant and the success will naturally follow.” -Oprah Winfrey

“To be successful at being significant, it takes a village” - Krista Malden

Krista Malden & Kenzie Webber


CONTENT CONTRIBUTORS VOLUME 3 ISSUE 8 The Community This grassroots magazine is a platform for, about and by the community.

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Subscribe for your free issue of Community Now! at www.communitynowmagazine.com Copyright 2019 ZX Media Corporation, Calgary Alberta Canada Community Now! Magazine Copyright 2018, published by ZX Media Corporation. Volume 3 Issue 8 | April 2021 All rights reserved. This magazine or any portion thereof may not be reproduced or used in any manner whatsoever without the express written permission of the publisher and writer.

The Superpower Project Why Entrepreneurship is a Superpower Blaise Hunter | Heroine

Gabrielle Bernstein once said, “Allow your passion to become your purpose, and it will one day become your profession.” We are seeing a continual trend over the years and I am not talking about social media platforms like Tik Tok or Clubhouse. More and more people are trading in their 9-5 jobs to start their own businesses. I believe it is because there’s a desire to bridge the gap between passion and profession. The Superpower Project column is about highlighting various challenges or “kryptonites” facing people and helping us neutralize their effect on us. Though it is great more people are pursuing their passions in the business realm, the drawback can be exhaustion. There are pros and cons with being an entrepreneur but if business owners can hone-in on their superpower, they will be able to overcome any obstacle that comes their way. Entrepreneurship is a superpower within itself, but it needs a trusty sidekick—The Why. The two go hand in hand. Passion ignited the profession but if we don’t continually reconcile the why, the power fizzles out. The zone of genius in business is where passion and reason collide. The pandemic has challenged us this past year and it seems every day a new kryptonite variant seems to come against us. So how do

we channel our superpowers? We must protect the why. Every decision in our busines equals an outcome, positive or negative, but if we continue to work with the why we will develop a never say die resolve. Each day we need to ask the question, “Why am I here?” We need to reconcile our why. It’s the check stop. A business border crossing so to speak. We need to answer this to proceed on the route. Is this a lesson? Is it a test? Is it a warning sign to stop? The why helps us take count and reassess. The why is a supportive role to passion but it is the unsung hero in this story. The why keeps us focused. The why fuels the power. The more society can encourage entrepreneurship the more passion will be sparked in the world. Passion is the birthplace of power. Can you imagine a world where people love what they do and let it be their gift to the world? Can you envision mental health issues dissipating because of individuals tapping into their individuality? Can you picture all the solutions to problems we would uncover because of unbridled passion? Kryptonite cannot stop an inspired entrepreneur. They harness hope for our future. Hope is the ultimate superpower. For more information about the Heroine Movement visit www.blaisehunter.com

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when starting a business “ASKING FOR HELP IS NOT A SIGN OF WEAKNESS” “Entrepreneurs assume this journey is lonely, but it doesn’t have to be. Alberta has a collaborative environment and is always there to help us succeed. Someone has solved the problems you are facing and is more than willing to share their knowledge.” - Jade Alberts,Founder Peer Guidance

it takes a village “Know the direction and revise the journey constantly through a continuing conversation with reality (especially your customers).” - Greg Hart, Design Partner Thin Air Labs 6 // Community Now!

“Do your homework before your business opens. Know your audience, product, vision, prices, expenses, and more. Leverage experts in starting a business. Ask for help. Ask for advice.” - Tara Adams, Founder Abridge Consulting

“Be prepared that your new life is going to cost you your old one. It’s going to cost you your comfort zone, relationships, and sometimes your self-confidence. Do it anyway. Let go, have faith in yourself, in your dream, and in your ability to do the thing. I’m cheering for you.” - Jennifer

“Know your objectives; business, personal & financial.” - Elizabeth(Liz) MacRae, Certified Exit Planner, Co-Founder of VIllage Wealth

Hadley, Founder Fierce Mom

“Ya, it will be extremely hard for a while, and you might not succeed. So what, you think life is supposed to be easy?” - Al Del Degan, Founder of Capturing Legacies

“Starting With Why is the best way to frame an Organization’s inspirational purpose.” - Greg MacGillivray, Founder S2S

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Now that you have had an “ah ha” moment

“An ah ha moment is when the blinders of your brain open up and you cannot go back and think about yourself, your capabilities or the world in the same way again. We believe that transformation happens from huge events but real lasting transformation happens in the ah ha moments when our beliefs are shifted permanently”. - Tammy Sherger, Founder I am Worth It Project


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At What Stage Should Entrepreneurs Ask For Help? At The Idea Stage. The idea is a starting point, and it will only strengthen when others share their thoughts. You never know where the next great suggestion will come from. All great Entrepreneurs ask for help along their entire journey. - Jade Alberts, Founder of Peer Guidance

“There are many reasons business owners should consider reaching out for outside support. Firstly: perspective. Business owners are often so involved in the day-today operations of their business, that their perspective can become narrow. Collect a wide range of views so that you can see an issue or challenge from as many perspectives as possible. This can help you make better decisions and come up with creative solutions to business challenges. In addition to providing perspective, business owners should reach out to available support because there’s no reason to make mistakes other people already have if they can be avoided. Reaching out to support form an organization like Business Link can help business owners to avoid costly mistakes and to achieve their business goals faster and more efficiently.” - Shay Bachelet, Business Link Community \\ 9

SALES vs MARKETING “Marketing and Sales must be joined at the hip. Too often we’ve seen a bit of a clash in objectives which is not productive for any organization. These teams must get together regularly: salespeople need to always be bringing the customer voice, feedback, and their inputs to the table. Marketing folks can help to shape messages and campaigns based on this customer feedback and inputs. Complete alignment between the 2 teams is critical, and specific measures, with time frames, must be established to determine what is working, and what is not. It is my belief that both marketing and sales should be compensated when acquiring customers.” - Kim Caves,sales professional, teacher, global sales-pitch winner, and strategist

“Marketing is one to many while sales is one to one but they definitely should be synchronized. Marketing can do campaigns for lead generation and brand awareness whiles sales can follow up on the leads.” - Pete Lafontaine, Salesperson of the World for Apple Computers, Entrepreneur, Investor, Community Builder

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“Whether it is departments, people or digital, they have to be on the same page. Everyone has to contribute to the growth of the company. This is where many companies waste valuable resources, either money, time or people. Do not be afraid to reach out and talk to others to see what they do.” - Jade Alberts, Founder Peer Guidance

“There is a ton of overlap between the marketing and sales functions which is why they are often discussed as one and the same. Marketing and sales each have their distinct role. Marketing is the business of gaining attention and building influence. The relationship in marketing is one-to-many or many-to-many. The goal is to deliver the right message, to the right person, at the right time. Sales are the steps needed to cover that attention and influence into a transaction and continue the relationship one-to-one. Ideally, a relationship that is mutually beneficial. Another way to look at it is that it is the sales team's job to make the operations job easy. It is the marketing team's job to make the sales team's job easy. And it is the PR team's job to make the marketing team's job easy. Though the idea is simple, the execution is not 'easy'.” - Stacy Richter, The Marketing Mindbender

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Marketing Q & A with Stacy Richter,

The Marketing Mindbender At what stage should a company start marketing? A company must start marketing Day 0. Since marketing is the business of gaining attention and building influence, it only makes sense to start marketing before anything else. This applies to new businesses, start-ups, long-run enterprises, and everything in between. New ventures are trying to get their first customers while longrun enterprises may be trying to launch a new product or service. In either case, marketing is THE first step. Thomas Edison said “Anything that won’t sell, I don’t want to invent. Its sale is proof of 12 // Community Now!

utility, and utility is success.” I have learned that you can sell a product or service before it is built. In fact, that is the best time to build it; after you have a paying customer. This seems counter-intuitive but is a cornerstone of successful launches. Why would anyone waste time, money, and resources to build an offer that nobody wants to buy? I feel it is better to know that my widgets won’t sell before I make them. What forms of marketing are there? Any material or communication which is attempting to gain attention or build influence is a form of marketing. I prefer to look at marketing through the lens of the people we intend to reach and the problems we can

Where can a business find help with marketing? (One that fits their budget) First decide if you want Do-It-Yourself (DIY), Done-With-You (DWY) or Done-For-You (DFY) services. The difference between the three will depend on how much time and/or money you have available to put in. The DIY marketing services can require a lot less money to invest but will require much more of your time. Marketing software platforms are a great source of DIY that can be much more accessible. There are no shortage of marketing platforms and apps that can help you market your business if you can put the time into learning them and becoming effective using them. There can be a steep learning curve in DIY.

solve from them and starts with their level of awareness on the following continuum; Unaware > Problem Aware > Solution Aware > Product Aware > Most Aware. The strategies and tactics change depending on your customers’ level of awareness. There is no point in making an offer to a customer who is unaware they even have a problem. Identify what level of awareness your customer has. Then it is your job to move them through the marketing stack:

On the other end, the DFY marketing services (think: hiring agencies or freelancers) will save you a ton of time. The experts worth hiring have already gone through the learning curve and have substantial insights that only many years of experience can bring. DFY marketing services will require an investment of your money instead of your time. The DWY marketing service is in between and can be a suitable balance of requiring investments of your time and money. Experts can be brought in to show you how to implement an effective strategy, and more importantly, help you avoid the land mines of inexperience. Group coaching programs and mastermind programs are great sources for those who need some help and are able to do the work.

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Positive Business Mindset: Acknowledge Your Successes – To be successful in business and life, it is wise to train your brain to acknowledge your successes daily, especially when times are rough. Some days a success might be a big achievement but on others, it might just be getting out of bed. Both count. Actions: 1) Each day, write down three things you did successfully. This can be as simple as brushing your teeth, making your bed or driving somewhere safely. The actual activity does not matter. The magic is in noticing a success and teaching your brain to acknowledge it. 2) Every day find at least one moment to declare “I just learned something new.” Benefits: These actions lead us to feel more accomplished which in turn builds confidence and happiness. This then leads to increased energy applied to our work and business. Joanne Neweduk

Introducing the NEW...

“If you don’t have your health, you can’t have your business.” - Joanne Neweduk

Introducing the NEW...

Host Joanne Neweduk


SALES 101 with the Experts

Pete Lafontaine

Kim Caves

Salesperson of the World for Apple Computers,

Sales professional, teacher, global sales-pitch

Entrepreneur, Investor, Community Builder

winner, and strategist

Before a company can be successful, something must be sold. Acquiring customers is a process and one that must be managed by research, multiple conversations with stakeholders, a strong team, and courage. Who among us hasn’t been frustrated by a pushy sales program whether it is telephone solicitation, door to door or a timeshare promotional give away? Many people think of sales in a negative way and even put up their defenses when facing a salesperson. Bottomline for all businesses that depend on finding customers for income they need to understand where sales fits into the business model.

What do the best salespeople focus on?

Pete: Understanding the customer, know your product/service or how to get the answers, being organized and relationships.

Kim: Building personal brand, (social media/ LinkedIn), understanding the art of discovery and uncovering customer problems by asking good questions (and listening to the answers!). Preparing for a prospect meeting is best rewarded when the salesperson does a lot of homework to build knowledge of the prospect before meeting them. Education strategy vs a deal strategy.

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(continued from page 15...) What are the circumstances that tell you that you are ready to hire a salesperson?

Pete: You are ready for a salesperson when you know who your customers are and the value you bring to them. Without this you can spend a lot of money on sales with very little results. One of the biggest mistakes is chasing un-qualified customers.

Kim: The most effective predictor of sales success is when the founders have been in the trenches finding and securing customers in the early part of the journey. This is an important step in validating the customer need and hearing their feedback to adjust the product and service. Once the ideal client profile is created by the founders, this will be a wonderful launching pad for a salesperson to come on board. Effectively communicating the strategy and the ideal customer will help salespeople narrow the target market and make their time effective and meaningful. How has the role of sales changed in the past year? What does a salesperson look like today? From a salesperson’s perspective? From a customer’s perspective.

Pete: For several years now and because of information available on the internet customers frequently do most of their knowledge gathering before they talk to anyone. Clearly online meetings will continue to be used. A sales person needs to be very organized, have the right information literally at their

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fingertips and be genuine in their discussions with customers. That’s my style but it should be known that not all sales strategies are that way. Think of fake CRA predator calls. Those are simply campaigns set up to find vulnerable people “qualified customers”. The smooth-talking sales person will jump on the line once the vulnerable person engages in the conversation. One thing that hasn’t changed. Getting referred to a customer by a client or friend is gold!! The other thing that has changed is that customers and sales can happen well beyond traditional territories and boarders. I can literally sell anywhere in the world now. Take a look a chat bots and see how they focus the conversation. Amazing when people think they are actually speaking to someone but are following a script or knowledge management system with a bit of Artificial Intelligence on top.

Kim: Customers want to see that you are highly informed about your product/service and how it fits into an ecosystem of competitors and other offers. They want you to help add clarity to all the ambiguous messages they get from a variety of information sources, your website/your competitors’ website, white papers, your history, credibility, peer reviews, etc. Salespeople need to see themselves as problem solvers and listeners. They need to understand the strategy of how companies buy products in today’s world. A wide variety of communication channels are being used to acquire customers and having knowledge of how they all knit together is important.

When working from home takes you to the job site, choose Budget. Celebrating 47 years of being locally owned and operated. Support local, and stay safe.


The Power of the Press Release

Blaise Hunter | CEO | PR Guru

"The medium is the message". Marshall McLuhan, Canadian communication thinker, changed the way we view how content is delivered. This phrase means the nature of a medium (the path through which a message is conveyed) is more important than the actual content of the message itself. We have all heard of the terms branding and marketing, but we often lump those two categories as one. Both are vital to every business, but they are two completely different aspects of highlighting one’s company. Brand identity is who you are, and marketing is who knows you.

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Most organizations figure out what their brand identity is, there core values and what sets them apart from the competition, but rarely do they hone-in-on how to effectively market themselves. We are an online world and we have flocked to the mediums of social media to promote our businesses but most companies, small and large, are not taking advantage of a key medium that is more powerful and the most cost effective—The Press Release. As a former broadcast journalist and publicist, I have been on both sides of the press release. I have relied on them for my news stories, and I have written and distributed them as part of a marketing strategy. Over 70% of

journalists still view press releases the best way to receive news tips. Here are four tips for business owners to incorporate right now: What is a Press Release? A press release is a brief, compelling news story sent to targeted members of the media. The goal of a press release is to pique the interest of a journalist or publication to do a story on the focused topic. The press release should contain all the essential information (who? what? where? when? how? and most importantly why?) for the journalist to easily produce their own story. It should read like a mini news story, written in third person, citing quotes, and sources and have a catchy headline at the top. This is sent out to local media via email. When should a business send out a Press Release? A press release is about highlighting all the good things you are doing in your business. It should have substance and be something newsworthy to capture the attention of both the media and your audience. A newsworthy piece of content is timely, relevant, impactful; it should be worth reading or writing about. A business should be issuing press releases every few months because it continues the chatter. Every business owner needs to be their own publicist. Anything can be newsworthy but knowing the right angle and hook is key. Business owners often spend copious amounts of money on social media marketing and they often don’t see great results. The press release is a free and effective way to market one’s business. It has the capability to leverage your business for longevity. The news never stops. Always continue to generate news about your business.

What does PR stand for and does it apply to businesses? Public Relations or PR is all about how the public perceives you and your business. It is a vital skill entrepreneurs need to acquire. PR is a lot like being in a relationship. You don’t just go all out on the first date and that’s it. You need to put the effort in to get to know your audience and for your audience to get to know you. As long as you are in business, you are married to your consumer. Be committed. Be current. Be fresh. Continue to build a strong message that leaves a lasting impression. Trust is everything in a partnership. Continuing to foster trust and communication with your audience creates the heartbeat of public relations. How should businesses use podcasts? Just like press releases are a free marketing tool so are podcasts. This is another untapped power source that gets you and your business in front of a captive audience. Research podcasts that align with your business theme. Reach out to them by email and pitch to them why you are a good fit. Don’t pitch your product. This is the biggest mistake entrepreneurs make. People want to know the person behind the product. They want to have a connection. Be the bridge that joins the product, message, and the medium. Become a master at storytelling. This sets you up to be a great interview. Write out talking points with the 5 W’s (Who, What, When, Where, and Why). Podcasting is a powerful advertising platform. It is a great content marketing tool and in a virtual world, the sky is the limit for your message to be heard. Exposure leads to influence which drives income. The more you can take advantage of pathways that increase your exposure, the more impact you will create.

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Starting the day off in the right way sets you up for a successful day. Deborah Nichols

Journey of Starting a Business; Starting a Business can feel like you’re at Disneyland; it’s the emotional ride of a lifetime, and it can also feel like you over-indulged in fried foods, pop & candy. One minute you are on top of the world, and the next, you’re wondering why you decided to do this to yourself. This month’s Happiness Challenge is a mini survival guide to navigate the highs & lows of life as a business owner. Starting the day off in the right way sets you up for a successful day.

1. Shake your business booty Start your day with a song or playlist that motivates you, gets you pumped up. It gets your energy elevated right away! Remember when you were a little kid, you can hardly wait to see what the day will hold for you. Music speaks to our soul ( even if you’re not a morning person, it’ll make you smile)

2. Magical Mindset Knowing what motivates you is essential to life as an entrepreneur. We can all do hard things. Why not make those hard things a little easier. Find three quotes for the week, one kick-ass quote that makes you feel like you can do absolutely anything. The second one supports your “why” What made you start your business? What did you want to accomplish? The third one makes you laugh; this one is for those times you blunder, maybe you beat yourself up if you made a mistake. As a business owner, you need to be able to laugh at yourself. “Experience is what you get when you don’t get what you want” this quote has always made me laugh. I have a lot of experience!

Ah, the life of an entrepreneur, it's everything. I know I wouldn’t change it for anything. Having small things along the way makes it more fun. Try out these mini-challenges, make them your own and feel like the Business Rockstar you are. 20 // Community Now!

3. Time Tricks We have all uttered these words “ there is never enough time in the day.” Time management is king in the business world. I feel like I could easily be the queen of wasting time. However, I have learned that if I make a plan and schedule it, I can squeeze in some daydreaming and a few songs from my playlist, which makes me happy. I do things that I dislike at the beginning of the day. ( I hear some groans out there, lol) I have a timer that I set for non-enjoyable tasks, the top of my list is probably social media. I set a timer for 15 mins for Social Media, and I do this twice a day. Whats happens when I set the timer? I feel like I can manage anything for 15 minutes. I do the same for email, although I set the timer for 25 minutes. I break up all my tasks this way. I schedule breaks, phone calls, the list goes on. I bought a kitchen time, as I found it quicker than setting my phone. But do what works for you. Try this out for one week, see if it works for you.

4. Trash Talk When you run a business, your mind is constantly working a lightning speed. We need a way to shut this down so you can get a restful sleep. At the end of each day, I do a brain dump. I write everything down that’s running around in my mind, yes, everything. Because by the end of the day, my mind is full, full, full, not just with business things but with personal items also. I set the timer (wink, wink) and write my little heart out for 15 minutes. This clears up the chaos of the mind each day. The challenge is for you to write down everything you need to do or what you’re thinking. Have a notebook beside your bed, in case when you start to drift off to sleep you remember something.

5. Celebrate the Wins It’s easy to get caught up in the things that didn’t go your way. We want to shift your attention away from going down the rabbit hole. Celebrating the small wins elevates and motivates us to keep going, and as an entrepreneur, we need this. You just need to give yourself some kudos each day. It doesn’t have to be flashy; it can be something like you completed a task that has been on your list for a week. Yay, you! Let’s say you kept a positive mindset all day, or you brought yourself back from the edge of the cliff. It doesn’t matter what it is. It just needs to be a win for you. Share your successes; it’s more fun!!

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“If we understand that the world is a complex system with unknowable relationships, we know failure is completely unavoidable.” - Greg Hart

Failure Failure is defined as (but not limited to be defined as) according to the Oxford Dictionary : •

lack of success in doing or achieving something

a person or thing that is not successful

an act of not doing something, especially something that you are expected to do

the state of not working correctly or as expected; an occasion when this happens

Greg Hart, Design Partner at Thin Air Labs joins Krista Malden, Publisher of Community Now! Magazine to explore failure. K: How do you define failure? G: Two version of the definition: 1. There is a nuance here between what is known and what is not. For instance, the standard definition of failure applies to what is known. For example, if someone has a lot of experience climbing steps in their house and then falls on those steps, it is considered a failure. If someone is 22 // Community Now!

supposed to know the answer to a question and they can’t remember or say it incorrectly, they have failed. If someone sets out to become the gold medalist in their sport and falls short, we say ’they failed at reaching their objective.’ Or even in language. Grammar has rules and we can fail to execute against them even when we know the correct application. For instance, writing the question, ‘Are their any people who believe this?’ is technically wrong and I’ve failed to use the right version of ’there.’ But can you

see why I might have? The question I’m asking is about people and THEIR beliefs. This can create confusion that challenges the complex assembly of responses in our brains. 2. If we understand that the world is a complex system with unknowable relationships, we know failure is completely unavoidable. If we know this about the world, it can also help us to avoid blame and instead focus on learning and under-

get to have the catching part all worked out in advance. And yet, we do generally celebrate the result. I think some of this is tied to the fact that only the result of the learning matters - the impact or change that happens. In a social species who have always depended on each other to survive (this starts well before humans on the primate section of the evolutionary tree), outcomes matter. While we might encourage learning, if it doesn’t lead to outcomes, it doesn’t matter. This is where cul-

standing. We can truly work together to see the features of every context that lead to good outcomes.

ture becomes so important. While successful outcomes are vital, they are lagging indicator; we only know about them after they happen. The routine experimentation, failure, and learning is a leading indicator for successful outcomes and cultures that reward and celebrate that behaviour will have more success as long as that doesn’t become an end in itself where outcomes don’t matter.

In the unknown scenario which is where we find most exploration and innovation, my definition is: A necessary step for learning. Learning is an adaptive response and making mistakes is a key step in that repeating process. K: When we look at the greatest achievements in life, why do we only talk about the successes? (And not the failures that occurred to make the great achievement happen) Denzel Washington’s speech ‘Fall Forward’ gives a great example. He states: “Thomas Edison conducted 1,000 failed experiments. Did you know that? I didn’t either - be-cause number 1,001 was the light bulb. Fall forward. Every failed experiment is one step closer to success.” G: ‘Fall forward’ is a very instructive use of language. Walking or running is a continuous cycle of falling forward and catching ourselves. When we are learning to walk we are pulled forward by the desire to get somewhere and to get something that we want. Parents routinely position themselves to encourage their aspiring toddlers to get to them. We learn to walk by first falling forward and then working out the catching part. We don’t

K: How do you define innovation? G: I define innovation as a change in the way something is (innovation of things) or the way something is done (innovation of ways) that results in the creation of new value. An innovation of WAYS is generally more powerful because it can produce reliable value over time, potentially spawning many new things. K: Without failure... what would we be missing in society? G: Learning, change, significant improvement, most of the most compelling games, books, plays, visual art, and movies. Everything is built around this tension. Without the chance of not generating a successful outcome, nothing would be interesting. Complexity is what makes failure so probable. So many ungovernable relationships with so many degrees of freedom. Lord Kelvin and others, on the eve of the 20th century, suggested that physics (continued on next page) Community \\ 23

(continued from page 23...) was all figured out except for some little details. He saw that as something uninteresting - without the tension of unknown things that require experiments. Of course, we quickly discovered that he was completely wrong since relativity and quantum mechanics was hiding around the corner to unleash more complexity than could be imagined. So much of life is built off of experiments which lead to experience... without failing we can’t figure out what we are Good at or where we belong ... yet failure is looked at as a bad thing. K: Why do you think society has such a bad outlook on failure (and where did it come from)? G: Humans are social creatures and depend on each other to survive. That isn’t always obvious from the headlines as we can easily forget the most essential parts of our nature and fool ourselves into thinking we can do everything ourselves. Even that underlines the core part of our social nature. We are trying to signal to others that we are so competent

that we don’t need anyone else. At the same time we are also signalling that we are so competent, everyone else needs us. There is a fear, an insecurity, associated with not being needed that can still lead to us losing our employment or the support of our fellow humans in some way. This is something that people are essentially afraid of and to ‘fail’ is to signal low competence and therefore harm our relationships with other people and the degree to which they choose to care about my well-being. Knowing this about people leads us to how we can accommodate for that. K: Going back to innovation: without it we have no new... but to get it we have to teach people to be curious and take risks and to believe in themselves. G: It is worth knowing, going back to what is known and what is not, that if we work in a ‘known’ context where we are exploiting some previous (perhaps long ago) innovation, failure becomes not part of learning but a threat to reliable outcomes. If we work in this world for long enough, it becomes difficult to embrace learning and failure even when we switch to a new context that requires it.


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24 // Community Now!

Again, culture becomes important. If the new context rewards and celebrates experiments, most people will conform to that standard of behaviour because it is safe to do so. This is where the concept of the psychological safety comes into play. It is a collection of behaviour that forms a keystone principle of cultures that seek innovation. K: How do we teach people to be curious, to take risks and to believe enough in themselves and their vision .....And to accept that the risk could lead to failure? G: It isn’t so much about teaching. After all, that is a form of telling and doesn’t translate to experience very well. In fact, telling steals learning from people and we want to create the conditions where they will learn. There is a heroic subtext (often not even the subtext but blazing through the headline) that it is all about the entrepreneur believing in themselves and their vision so much that they will endure all the slings, arrows, starvations, failed relationships, and other outrageous fortunes to bring it to life or … not. In saying this, I am not disputing the reality that this is actually true about entrepreneurship. I am saying that it ought not to be. And this brings us back to the conditions we create. Since innovation requires mistakes and failures and since humans are far from all-knowing or infallible, we need to create conditions where we can explore the unknown without continuous, precarious, existential threat hovering over us like the sword of Damocles. Some people will disagree here, believing that the threat of the sword motivates learning and successful outcomes. It doesn’t have to be existential. With the consequences stacked that high, mostly only the heroes are going to succeed when we need lots of people to succeed and be willing to take chances. Bankruptcy laws were created to allow people

to come back from significant financial failure. Without those or the protection of a limited liability (it’s right in the name) corporation, the entrepreneur’s journey we be even more epically heroic. Sure, go for it, but if it doesn’t work, you’ve forfeited your future entirely. If we make it too hard for people to contemplate failing, they will either not start or avoid it to the extent that it generates a catastrophic failure at a later stage. We want to control the exposure in the learning so the inevitable mistakes are small and the learning fast and agile. It is where the philosophy of the agile approach to software development comes from create the conditions for learning by making a continuous series of tiny bets that we can learn from. It is one of the reasons that, when building software, we might say to try and execute the smallest user stories possible so that very little is lost and the most is learned in the highly likely event that it doesn’t exactly work the way we expect it to. K: In the business world disruption is also talked about ... is disruption a good or bad thing? G: Disruption is a fascinating word that, like many words before it, has lapsed into buzzword status. Fundamentally we are talking about a technological change so significant that it displaces the way things are done including entire sets of products, markets, and systems. The most obvious example is the digital disruption that we see expanding and morphing even to include things like the NFTs. What is interesting about disruption is that it can be led, it can be capitalized upon, or we can be victimized by it. In particular disruptions can trigger a transformation of an entire system or, they can be captured by

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Get Outside Never underestimate the power of nature. Sunshine. Fresh air. Exercise. It’s worth it- especially when you think you’re too busy. - Shawna Curry

the status quo to increase the hold of the old trajectory. An example of this is using digital tools to increase economic extraction and further focus the accumulation of wealth in fewer hands but faster than ever. Disruptive technology, while dramatically shifting value chains in a set of markets, may not disrupt larger currents in business and society but instead be captured by it. This is a focusing reality at Thin Air Labs. There are some transformations relating to the social foundations and planetary boundaries that must take place in the world and fast. We want to see disruptive technologies accelerate those transformations and not be captured by existing currents that are leading towards the future we must avoid. In fact, we see an opportunity to curate and guide these disruptions, accelerating the demise of undesirable trajectories.

Tune in every week for a new episode featuring inspiring Albertans who are shaping the innovation sector in our province. If you want to learn more about Alberta's innovation sector, join our volunteer team. Contact info@rainforestab.ca to be a host or featured guest. 26 // Community Now!



SCHOOL OF ROCK | CALGARY 2707-17TH AVE SW 587-353-7625 www.locations.schoolofrock.com/calgary

A Check List for the Health of Your Team

In organizations, things can be more ambiguous. Often, you’re not entirely clear about your role, the expectations placed on you, your expectations of others, the rules, and what success looks like. Let me offer up a model to check the health of your team and to help make things clearer for all. Each section considers the people you serve as well as the people with whom you’re working.

Vision and Mission

Often “teams” are a loose collection of people who happen to work on the same project and often appear more like an ad hoc, unrelated and disorganized system and less like a single unit.

It’s straightforward being on a sports team. You know what your position is. You know what is expected. You know who’s with you and who’s against you. The rules are clear.” - Steve Armstrong

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Simon Sinek would ask, ‘Why?’ In other words, what are we all working to achieve? If there’s no shared vision and mission, is this even a team? Two questions you might wrestle with as you try to understand your organization are: Who are we helping? To successfully serve, you need to know who it is you serve. Savvy marketers create avatars of their ideal customers to make them real. Who is your team serving? What dent are we making? If you get away from the inbox and your calendar for a moment, what is your team to achieve? If your team is successful in all they do, what will be different? If that’s not clear or if it’s just a little bit “meh,” then there’s work to be done to getting clear on the Why.

Communications What’s the data? There are two parts to communication: the data (the facts) and the judgments (our opinions about the facts). What’s interesting is just how easily we slip from one to the other or how quickly judgments come to resemble facts. As you make decisions as a team, ask yourselves, “What do we know to be true?” What do you want? An essential element of leading teams is understanding wants and needs. If you find yourself at odds with someone on your team, one of the most powerful things you can do is to ask them what they want, and then share what you need.

Connection Who matters? You can’t always treat everyone as if they were equally important to the team’s goals and ambitions.

First, it’s shocking how hard it can be to articulate what it is you want. Second, it’s shocking how quickly that knowledge can clear away what’s superficial and focus the conversation on what matters.

Within your stakeholders, who’s on the A-List? If you could have only five names, who would they be? I bet that you’re probably underserving your ‘AList.’ How could you give them the support and service that they deserve? Who is on the B-List? You are probably over serving these stakeholders. How can you scale back here, so you can direct more time and effort to your A-List? You will need to review these lists regularly to understand how the A and B-Lists can change and to adjust to those changes.

Accountability What’s the promise we’re making and to whom? Our very first question was, “Who are we helping?” Now ask, “What’s the promise we’re making to them, and how are we doing delivering on that promise?” Where are the soft spots? Where do you need to lift your game? How can I help? Ironically one of the ways we break promises is that we over-deliver. We think we know what’s wanted, so rather than check it out and get clear, we leap in and start doing stuff. Before you rush in, slow down and get clear on how they think you can help them. Ask, “What do you need from me?”

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CONFESSIONS OF A BUSINESS OWNER Every time I see something wrong in the world, I think of how it might be a profitable business idea to solve the problem. Owning a business means making shit work!

Sometimes...I respond to client emails from the bathtub...

I broke down crying after seeing my toddler's sad face when he asked if I could play with him. I was in the middle of a crucial prospect call. I love being an entrepreneur!!! It gets lonely

A number of my first drafts are fueled with

at times and comes with financial stress but

a big ol' glass of red wine...then edited with

I wouldn't change a thing. If I had to work

coffee the next day

for a big corporation I would get fired in a

I often watch episodes of The Office to remind me why I chose to be an entrepreneur To sneak work in I sometimes hide in the bathroom to answer emails, so that my family doesn’t know I’m working.

second as I would challenge any BS. I was born to be wild I keep seeing things that don’t exist and ask my poor long suffering husband, “wouldn’t it be cool if?”. I sketch it out, he gently rolls his eyes, improves what I’ve sketched, then we design, patent, and build it. We have 5 patents.

When I make time to relax in a bubble bath, am I really relaxing as I check my emails & my social media posts? I wish I knew how to read my financial state-

I have had days where I felt on top of the

ments so I was more confident when I have

world with a step forward or a success fol-

to meet with the bank.

lowed by wanting to curl up in a ball and become a coffee barista all in the same day.

30 // Community Now!

We bought a small trailer to see Canada, but knew we were going to store it while travelling for at least a few days, so I sketched out a way to lock an RV or trailer without damaging the body of the trailer itself. Chris refined my design and we patented it. RV Protection

I Google my business name and see who else pops up. Then I go to Go Daddy and

There have been days that I

buy up all the domain names that remote-

never got out of my pj’s and

ly are similar to mine and theirs. Yes, I am

brushed my teeth at 4pm in the

that competitive. No, I’m not proud of it. Lol. #totalworlddomination


I love going to the movies during the day. I put my phone on vibrate and ignore the world. I wish I didn’t buy into the belief that “if you keep working hard, you’ll eventually be successful.” I worked my tail off with a blind belief that I just had to keep going.

I do a weekly live where I give tips and trick to make it through the rest of the week and sometimes I come up with an idea 30 minutes before I go live.

Sometimes the best thing you can do is to

I do my hair and makeup so I look ok for my

acknowledge that you’ve done everything

video posts on social media, but I change

you can and that your plan isn’t going to

my tops and record a bunch of different

work. I’m not a failure. The business is. I’ve

videos all at once so I don’t have to do my

learned a lot and it’s time to move on to

hair and makeup as often and I don’t look

something new.

like I’m always wearing the same clothes…

I have a shot of Baileys and Coffee to start my day off

bottoms are always leggings or pyjamas. I LOVE Zoom work and working from home!

I truly believe that working for yourself is the best job in the world and the worst job in the world!!

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How many hats does an entrepreneur wear? ?
















? CR


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Building B1, #201, 2451 Dieppe Ave SW, Calgary, AB T3E 7K1

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Change up your work space Working in different environments provokes inspiration. Do walking meetings. Rent an office for a day. Be creative in where you work. - Shawna Shawna Curry Curry

NETWORKING Why is building and learning from a strong network important? Learning from other’s experience and knowledge is a great way to leverage information and avoid pitfalls. The entrepreneurial journey can feel isolating and it’s helpful to know that you are not alone in your experience. Relating to others and seeing that you are not alone in your challenges and frustrations (even failures) can build confidence and give you the push you need to keep going. Lastly, networking is important because you can gain access to support, mentorship, new opportunities to make sales, exposure for your business, and opportunities for partnerships that could contribute to the growth and success of your business. You're going to need people who can hear you out, brainstorm solutions to challenges, provide space to vent, pass on their own experiences, and show they care. - Shay Bachelet, Business Link

There is nothing more important than networking. The ability to have the opportunity to talk to other like-minded people that have been through what you are going through is priceless. You may think you are alone, but you are not. Alberta has a collaborative, entrepreneurial community, and I have introduced new entrepreneurs to wily old vets, and they always have time t share their knowledge. Look at my Telling It Like It Is Facebook Live show. I get weekly requests for introductions and many Thank yous for giving people a platform to share their stories and knowledge. - Jade Alberta, Peer Guidance

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What would Calgary's innovation sector look like if every interaction and idea stemmed from a place of trust, collaboration, and diverse thinking? That is what Rainforest Alberta works to fulfill. Rainforest Alberta is based on the premise that the nature of complex innovation ecosystems is comparable to biological systems. Talent, ideas, and capital are the nutrients required to grow such systems and are maximized by human behaviors allowing these nutrients to move freely, like in Rainforests. Optimal social behaviors require trust across social barriers, encourage diversity of talent, and promote experimental collaboration among individuals. This creates a culture of trust.

We are an inclusive movement of doers, leaders, and dreamers working together to improve Alberta's innovation ecosystem through commitment to a culture of trust and giving back. We believe that our province has the right ingredients to be fertile ground for growing innovative ideas into sustainable, globally competitive ventures. We create space for honest conversations and meaningful collisions in our community. It is within the Rainforest where anyone can come to learn, share knowledge, give back and support the upcoming ideas and entrepreneurs in our own backyard. If you are curious about what is happening in Alberta's innovation sector and how you can get involved, join the Rainforest Alberta movement by signing our social contract, attend our events or follow us on social @RainforestAB.

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Peer Guidance makes sure you have access to knowledge regardless of your financial situation. Our team of Entrepreneurs has been through every situation imaginable and has lived what you are going through. We want to share our experiences and guide you to success.

WHAT CHALLENGES DO PEOPLE BRING FORWARD TO PEER GUIDANCE WHEN THEY ASK FOR HELP? We see many issues from financial, marketing, people, contracts, growth and partnerships (how to construct a partnership to ending one). We see many different situations and hear tons of stories. The majority are positive and solvable. Unfortunately, there tough conversations and with very challenging decisions.

Jade Alberts - Peer Guidance - Jade Alberts Consulting 403-771-1301 www.PeerGuidance.ca • www.JadeAlbertsConsulting.com www.LinkedIn.com/in/JadeAlberts

There is a gap between your skill ‘what you do’ and the skill of taking what you do and being successful. No one teaches you that…..how to take your skill out into the day to day world and create success. That’s how I help people, by helping them build the solid foundation of worthiness first, worthiness is your beliefs, overcoming fear, self doubt and having the confidence to get started. Knowing you are good enough. Then I fill the gap showing them how to take their skill and create big success. Worthy & Wealthy iamworthitproject.com | admin@iamworthitproject.com

NEED HELP What is the benefit of having an assistant? It gives someone the ability to put their energy and time where they would like or need to within the business. What is an online assistant ? Someone who can assist with day to day operations and administrative tasks virtually.

Is an online assistant affordable for a startup? Yes. With VA’s available all over the world, it is just a matter of finding the right VA for your business.

What stage of business should someone be looking for an assistant? I would say within the first 5 hires. Typically the first 5 hires includes but in no particular order, Sales, Marketing, Administration, HR and IT/Web Lenneal Howden, Virtual Executive Assistant


NOT FIT ALL Donna Dahl Coach /mentor/ advisor/ - what is the difference?

A coach is a personal confidante who fulfills a purpose in your vision or agenda. A coach is a voice of inspiration—someone who is more than a teacher or an instructor. You can, of course, pay for lessons or watch videos to receive instruction. On the other hand, having access to a coach as opposed to learning from pre-recordings adds that human touch. A coach is someone who works with you to address your mental side of the game—be that in sport, in business or the game of life. A coach works with you as you focus on the issues at play impacting on your results. For optimal results, it is important, therefore, that your coach is someone with whom you can be

comfortably honest and for whom you have regard and respect. It is then that your coach can take you beyond the skills you have acquired and into the deeper realms of strengthening your confidence in your competence, your capabilities and your influence. Expect to spend several months or even years working with a coach. A mentor is someone who may have paved the road you are about to embark upon. Think of a mentor as someone who knows where the potholes are located—someone who knows how to navigate around them and over them and can offer the benefit of their experience.

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(continued from page 41...) A mentor is someone for whom you have a high regard. When someone who you view as a mentor accepts you as a protégé, that is most special. It means you are being given the gift of time and the gift of relationship. It offers you a golden opportunity to learn from a master. A mentor is not necessarily your coach. Think of a mentor as a guide. Expect to spend six months to a year in a mentorship relationship. An advisor is someone with whom you consult for direction. An advisor is someone

whose answers you value because they have the expertise you seek. Advisors may be persons who offer information related to specific needs or events. Their period of service to you may be as a single event or may be short-term or intermittent. As your needs change, expect that you will change up the advisors and mentors you work with over time. The same can be true in the world of coaching. There is no one size fits all. Professional sport has countless stories of changing up the coaching roster. Once the need the coach has tackled is fulfilled, it is on to the next.

We are a community instilling hope and connection in the lives of young people aged 17 to 24, exiting street life.

Change is Possible.

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We flipped the traditional case management model and the results are powerful My childhood was dark, I didn’t have guidance from anyone and I was moved around a lot. Try to imagine what it would be like never staying in the same home for longer than six months. It made it impossible for me to get a proper education. By the time I was 18 my family had left me to the wolves and it felt like the few services I had in my life said; “Goodbye have a nice life.” I don’t believe I was given a fighting chance. I held on so tight, I did everything I could to not become a statistic. Becoming homeless was very scary for me. Depression, fear, anger, hatred were the only emotions I felt. I can barely put into words what it was like having my life end up somewhere I never imagined. I wanted help, but no one was giving me the help I needed. I was at the point of giving up entirely when a friend told me about a place where ‘they care about your future not your past’. I decided to go to The Doorway. Instead of the usual, “This is what you have to do, now do it,” I heard, “What is it that you want to do and how are you going to do it?” This really took me by surprise because they left it up to me. Their trust made me feel worthy of going to treatment and the person they still saw in me gave me enough confidence to pursue my GED. They talked TO me instead of AT me. I realized that I have the tools necessary to make change, and I was the one that made the changes. Dee, Age 20

No young person should have given up on their future before the age of 24. YOU can change a young person's life forever. Change is Possible

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"...they treated me like a person, not a disease as a lot of others had in the past." -Tyson, Age 21 Community \\ 43

How do you juggle family and owning a business - Jennifer Hadley, Founder Fierce Mom You absolutely CAN have it all. Anyone who says otherwise is missing out on key strategic planning. The thing is, that we limit ourselves by beliefs that we have decided are true without even discovering if that’s really possible. I’m a single mom of two kids and I work from home, work out every day and run my own business. I make time for my relationships that matter, I volunteer for causes that matter to me, I travel as much as possible, and I absolutely LOVE my life! How? Easy - I live the life I want because I build the life I want. It all comes down to strategic planning and curating your life around your values. The first step is to visualize what you want your life to look like, and then allow yourself to live that life - without worrying about others opinions, or what you’re “supposed” to do, or feeling guilty for wanting that life. Once you get past what I call the "head stuff”, it’s just a matter of planning and logistics. Figure out what matters to you the most - time with your family, exercise, volunteering, etc… and then build those important non-negotiables into your day. If you set three MUST DO’s in your planner every day and each of them are tied to one of your overall goals, you’re winning. Put those things into your schedule, and fill your days with activities that fill your heart. You’ll find that those activities also fulfil your business needs, family, and personal life. And yes - schedule your reading time, your yoga, your meal prep, your movies nights with your kids - make an appointment with yourself and honour it, and you’ll see how quickly you’ll be more fulfilled because you’ve filled your days with things that ignite you and fulfil you. You’ve got this! It’s all just a matter of pre-planning! 44 // Community Now!

Leaving a “job” (corporate life) for entrepreneurship Get all your credentials in place Get a few partners in place Get a few clients lined up Have lots of savings in the bank Be prepared to make no money Be a good person and work with other people that are good people Tara Adams Abridge Consulting

Make sure you are not suffering from what I call the either/or syndrome. This is where you believe that I have to quit my job first before I become a business owner. It’s not either/or…………….and this is what holds most people back. However when I teach them the planning and preparation that can be done (and frankly should be done) before leaving your ‘job’ it increases confidence and better prepares them for the transition to a business owner. Sometimes they also realize that they prefer to stay in their job. - Tammy, Founder I am Worth It Project!

Start capitalizing on building your network NOW! Make sure that you have built a rock solid network of individuals that you trust and that will support you in your endeavors. You are going to need these people later on. Make sure you are also vested in them. Don’t just call them when you need help, but truly get to know them as people. - Adette Lacerte, Founder Nine and Three Quarters Coaching Community \\ 45

MAKING WORK FUN! With Robert Manolson Why is team building important? “Not finance. Not strategy. Not technology. It is teamwork that remains the ultimate competitive advantage, both because it is so powerful and so rare. But that is not to say that teamwork is doomed. In fact, building a strong team is both possible and remarkably simple. But it is painfully difficult.” – Patrick Lencioni

How do you do team building during a pandemic? “With so many organizations large and small now having staff work at home through the online platform, you may be asking yourself “How do you actually do TEAM RE-BUILDING during a pandemic? More specifically, how do you do TEAM RE-BUILDING online during a pandemic? C

What does it mean to have fun work experience? Since the release of his latest book, The JerkFree Workplace: How You Can Take the Lead to Create a Happier, More Inspiring Workplace, the #1 question Mike Kerr has been asked is this: Is a jerk-free workplace realistic? Is it even possible? “Of course it is!” responds Mike. “And given the enormous toll and costs associated with work jerks, aiming for a jerk-free workplace is definitely a most worthwhile goal!” – Mike Kerr How do you incorporate fun into work (at home) “The most important first step to incorporating “Fun at Work” is to organize a set of standards in your best practices model around the driving belief that we need to have more fun at work. Your company is a great place to work, right? Focus on adding even more value to your business model by integrating fun at work policies and practices. This type of approach will be viewed as leading-edge for your organization, the work days will be more meaningful and your employees will enjoy the total work experience.” – Robert Manolson 46 // Community Now!

Here's the good news! Fire off an email to me. robert@powerfulplay.ca . Yes. I know. Your inbox is so consistently full that it causes even more stress and gets in the way of positive mental health. No worries. You can call me anytime. 780.297.4103. Let's talk! Everything starts with a conversation. Let's discuss your particular situation.” – Robert Manolson

Why should work environments incorporate workplace mental health? Two reasons. It is the right thing to do. There is an impressive business case. Why should mental health be a concern in the workplace? It is the highest want, need and cost to an employer. -Tara Adams Abridge Consulting








At Pixeltree, we believe that founders, of any and all professions, should feel confident developing digital products. Our incremental, iterative, and empathetic approach to product development supports founders and helps them produce products that not only satisfy their core business goals, but provide them with a stronger technical understanding of their ideas. Pixeltree also commits ourselves to hiring and mentoring local talent and actively participating in our start-up community. This helps us extend the work we do as a software consultancy further than products we develop, helping us truly really embody the notion of Tech with heart.




3:29 PM

Part 2 of Understanding Cyber Security

Q & A with Dominic Vogel Founder of Cyber.SC How did you get into cyber security? And why? When I was in high school I knew I wanted to do something with technology but I wasn’t sure what. My dad (who was a computer science high school teacher) brought home a stack of IT/computer magazines. He thought there would be something in there that interested me. I found a magazine called “Information Security Magazine.” I read it cover to cover and I knew right then that was my calling in life. I truly grateful for the opportunity to be able to empower organizations to thrive in the digital age by making them resilient in the face of cyber risks and threats. 48 // Community Now!

How do people get cyber security? Engage a trust cyber security advisor or cyber risk leadership service. Cyber risk is not a technology issue. It’s a business risk. It’s not a problem that you can push off to the IT team or your IT service provider. If you are a business owner, executive, or board director the responsibility of cyber risk falls on your shoulders. It is no different than financial, operational, or personnel risk. If your organization doesn’t have the internal leadership expertise around cyber risk management (and most SMBs do not) consider engaging outside expertise.

Why do companies of all sizes need cyber security? Over 75% of all global cyber attacks are focused on small and midsize companies. There used to be a time when only the big banks and healthcare companies needed to worry about cyber security (they still do!) In an age of a digital economy, where organizations are increasingly virtualized, organizations of all shapes and sizes, and all sectors need to proactively address cyber security. For many small and midsize organizations cyber risk is an existential risk. Many do not have the big war chest to survive a data breach or sustained cyber attack. When should a company think about getting cyber security? Yesterday. Seriously cyber risk is consistently mentioned as being one of the top three risks facing all organizations globally. The World Economic Forum for the past five years has labelled cyber risk as being a risk that every company needs to address. Whether you are a small 15 person company or a large multinational enterprise of 15,000 employees you need to invest in cyber security. It will definitely look very different at every organization but it must be present. Effective cyber security must be interwoven into the DNA fabric of the organization. As your company morphs and changes so too does your cyber security capabilities. The investment in cyber security needs to be commensurate with the value of the assets you are protecting. You wouldn’t spend $1 million dollars protecting a $25,000 asset. But you might spend $50,000 protecting a $500,000 asset. Starting your cyber security journey doesn’t have to involve big expendi-

tures and buying fancy technology. Effective cyber security is about the basics and doing them well. Train your staff on cyber security awareness, train them to be able to identify the most common scams and online threats. Develop policies around secure data handling. Ask your IT service provider or internal IT team how current technology investments are addressing cyber risk gaps. What happens if a company if affected by a cyber threat? Or is attacked? Ransomware is one of the most common cyber attacks affecting organizations (particularly small and midsize companies) right now. It’s the 21st century equivalent of kidnapping. Basically your systems and data are held for ransom. You don’t regain access unless you pay the ransom (generally via a digital currency like Bitcoin). Can you imagine your organization being down for a whole day? Or whole week? Ransomware cripples organizations. We do not truly realize how dependent our companies are on digital assets until they are taken away! Furthermore if personal information (such as social insurance numbers) are compromised (commonly referred to as a data breach) your organization, executives, and board directors can be held legally liable if it can be proven that there was insufficient oversight and governance over cyber security.

www.cyber.sc Community \\ 49

SUPPORTING LOCAL Why is it important to support local If we aren't, who is? Not every purchase or hire has to be local, but if everyone makes an effort to support locals as much as possible, it will only make our economy stronger. - Jade Alberts, Founder of Peer Guidance

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Mo Aladin There are 4 main things to consider in purchasing a franchise, Motivation, Selecting and Assessing, Op-research and Long Term Viability. So what is your

motivation for getting one, there are two main reason, I want to buy a job or I want to invest money in a venture. Buying or working a franchise is the most successful as you are 100% committed, skin in the game, living and breathing it. Investing is very tricky as handing it to someone has its challenges. Write your reasons down on why you want to do it. To go about selecting, that starts with what is your aptitude for that business, will they train and support , how much money is needed, how does the corp make money, royalties, rent, etc, read the earning if publicly traded company, where do you get the money? Assessing is by talking to the people involved, see what they offer, “potential return on your money”, area where you would relocate, how long have they been around, is it just “trendy” as in flavour of the

month (eg cup cakes), talking to happy franchisees, reading franchising magazine, and other sources. This is where all the Kool Aid someone is selling you should stop now its time to do op-research, talk to franchisees that they don't what to talk to, call across the country to ones you don't know, tell them you are looking for a franchise opportunity and are curious about the business. Do web search on any litigation against them, ask people who are generally in that business to give you feedback on what you are getting yourself into. Finally, does it have legs and long term viability, has the organization updated their systems, technology and offerings to be viable? Before you put pen to paper, ask them what happens if it fails and how will you support me. The biggest advice i can give you make sure you get everything on paper, if they are offering rent relief if it goes south, if they are going to send people to help, do they have royalty relief, rent relief, get every nuance on paper.

Explorer Group Canada LTD

The Largest Multicultural Marketing Company in Alberta. Connecting you and your business with over a quarter million Chinese Customers”.

Phone: 780-340-8643

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Advice on Owning,

starting and running a retail business Follow your passion to your vision. Determine your product mix and demographics. This doesn't mean it can't change over time. It's the vision that will lay your foundation. When I was very young, my vision was to own a children's clothing boutique. Today I own a woman's apparel and accessory boutique. The commodity is different, but the concept is the same in terms of wardrobing, sales, and customer service. • Have a sound business plan. Know where you're going, and be flexible to adapt. • Negotiate! Your lease; suppliers' goods; freight charges; almost everything is negotiable. • Location, location, location. Buying the assets of an existing business or starting from "scratch", ensure your demographic has easy access to your business Nancy Rosychuk; Owner NV Fashions

The world of retailing is changing rapidly and I would make sure you completely understand what you are getting into and have a clear vision and understanding of how you will bring value to your market. I often joke when saying that the way to make a million dollars in retail is to start with ten million dollars. In order to have a successful retail business requires a large skillset and the ability to wear many hats. Being in retail can be exciting but also comes with risk. - Karen Judge, The Happiness Collaborative

For retail location location location! Know your customer base. Make sure you know your prod-uct, are willing to add new items and have money in the bank. Not enough cash flow is the downfall of new businesses. Also be willing & ready to work long hours Kathy Malden, KCO Enterprises

Eat Good food fuels your mood and energy. Maintain healthy habits by separating food and drinks from your work as much as possible. - Shawna Curry Community \\ 53

The Importance of Planning Q & A with Elizabeth (Liz) MacRae, Certified Exit Planner, Co-Founder of Village Wellth When should someone look into or make a plan to close/sell/hand down their business? This question can vary when considering closing or selling. It's important to first understand what they have. If you have a sellable business, why close? If you are trying to sell your business but don't have anything really salable there is a problem.... What makes a sellable business? This can vary based on industry and size. For some businesses they will be selling off pieces of the business; a client list, or liquidating and selling off equipment and inventory. For others, who are looking to sell the company as a whole, there are a

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few key factors the typical buyer will look at; What is the owners role and if they work in the company are they paying themselves appropriately for the work that they do in the company? Is the business profitable and making enough to cover the debt servicing on a loan that the acquirer takes on in order to purchase the business? What does the future of the industry look like? How profitable will the business be in the future after it changes hands? Before deciding to start the process to sell, hand-down or close the business, do the homework to understand who potential acquirers are and where the value of the business lies. Having an exit plan in place will help to answer most of the questions above. When to begin the exit process; In a perfect world...you begin with the end in mind. Exiting your business is like death and taxes, you can't avoid it. When the day

arrives that you make the decision to jump out of the ownership lifecycle it could be for any number of reasons or at any time. At a minimum you should be starting to plan the exit at least 3 years out. Why is planning so important; By planning early you can expand your buyer options, align your personal finances, impact the business value, improve business attractiveness and take the time to tax plan. Without a plan you end up leaving your sale to chance. What service do you offer to businesses; We support individuals, groups and companies in preparing to acquire owner-managed companies. Our digital platform allows buyers to connect with the guidance and support they need to navigate the buying journey while giving existing business owners access to qualified, vetted and motivated buyers.

Participate In A Weekly Facilitated Discussion Group Series with 5 People!

FOR MORE DAILY POSITIVE MENTAL HEALTH • How Can We Give & Receive Support That Makes A Difference In Our Lives? • What Are The Best Recommended Daily Coping Strategies? • Is There a Difference Between Mental Health & Mental Illness? • And More! Much More! FREE INFORMATION PACKAGE By Contacting Robert Manolson robert@powerfulplay.ca


Financial Literacy Q & A with Shannon Pestun, Founder, Pestun Consulting Inc., Co-Founder, The Finance Cafe Why is financial literacy important? Financial literacy is important because it can be the difference between business failure and business survival. The main reasons for business failure is inexperienced management and a lack of planning. 82% of small businesses fail due to poor cash flow management and 65% of failed businesses attribute their closure to lack of financial management.

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Why do you think people lack financial literacy? Financial literacy is a learned skill. Most entrepreneurs don’t go into business because they’re interested in finance - or have a strong financial background. Instead, they go into business because they’re passionate about what they do and have a deep understanding of the product or service they offer. At the same time, running a business requires an entrepreneur to wear many hats, and finding time to devote to building financial literacy

skills can be difficult - especially in the early days of a startup, when entrepreneurs are mostly focused on finding customers and keeping the revenue flowing.

finances - at all stages of your business. The entrepreneurial journey is full of twists and turns, opportunities and set backs - all of which have a financial impact.

Being a consultant, how do you help women in business?

Financial goal setting, combined with knowledge is an entrepreneurs’ super power. Advice can come from many people - including other entrepreneurs, bankers, financial advisors, accountants and business consultants, like me!

As a former business banker that focuses on the advancement of women’s entrepreneurship, I provide business and finance advising services that allow women - and their - companies to realize their full economic potential. I also help women navigate through the financing landscape by helping them prepare to meet with bankers and investors. At the same time, I’m the Co-founder of the Finance Cafe - a new online business finance community that focuses on financial literacy for women entrepreneurs. When should entrepreneurs seek financial advice or re-evaluate their financial goals? Being an entrepreneur comes with financial risks - and it’s important to have a plan for managing both your personal and business

Why is it important to set your own personal goals before business goals. It’s so important that before you set business goals, that you clarify your personal goals. Business is personal - as is the journey. If personal goals aren’t being met, it’s hard to stay engaged and committed to what you’re building. Not all entrepreneurs have the same motivation for starting a business - some want a flexible lifestyle, some want to build big enterprises. Only when entrepreneurs have clarity around their personal goals and motivation does the process of building and executing the right strategy become clear.


Building Purposeful, Engaged & High-Performing Organizations! www.scenarios2strategy.com gm@scenarios2strategy.com

Sleep is the number one performance enhancing agent. You’ll do better in your business by focusing on your sleep than any other task. - Shawna Curry

Community \\ 57

“Thank you,

for ALL you DO – Krista Malden

Thank you to all current and past contributors Elizabeth MacRae

Zanika Malden

Deborah Nichol

Jade Alberts

Jennifer Hadley

Greg MacGillivray

Mo Aladdin

Fierce Mom

Shawna Curry

School of Rock

Stacy Richter

Kim Caves


Made by Momma

Pete Lafontaine

Alberta Innovates

The Doorway

Kathy Malden

Deloris Walker

Safe Haven Foundation

Steve Armstrong

Tara Adams

Fresh Start Recovery

Dominic Vogel

Nancy Rosychuk

Simone House Recovery

Shannon Pestun

Karen Judge

Pixel Tree

Joanne Neweduk

Donna Dahl

Cyber CS

Stacy Richter

Useful Bags and Masks

Dominic Vogel

Greg Hart

Adette Larcete

Diane Swiatek

AL Del Degan

Banbury Crossroads

Les Mottosky

Rainforest Alberta


Marilyn Dyke

Nicole Langton

Jill Quirk

Shay Bachelet


Kenzie Webber

Business Link

Dave Malden

Tracy Beairsto

Blaise Hunter

Sophia Fairweather

Kathy Malden

Robert Manolson

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Our Mission: Promoting curiosity, communication and engagement in making Alberta a stronger and better place to live, to be educated, do business, promote innovation and community celebration. www.communitynowmagazine.com Facebook: @communitynowmagazine Twitter: @communitynowma1 Publisher@CommunityNowMagazine.com

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