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REVEAL BUSINESS MAGAZINE JUNE 2020 |

N I A G A R A

BU S I N E S S

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MA G A Z I N E

Volume 1 I issu e 3

Shop

LOCAL It is more important than ever to remember that we are part of a community, and to support one another.

BARE BRAND

You need to revisit your brand strategy during this unfamiliar ground, it is so important.

plus

MEET THE PRO BATTERY FAMILY

Reveal Business Magazine talks to a Niagara-based, family-owned & operated business, Pro Battery Shops, about their journey and batteries, big and small. Join us as we celebrate their 5th-year anniversary. FREE

VOL.1 • ISSUE 3 • 2020

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June 2020

Vol. 1, Iss. 3

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INVEST OR LIVE IN BEAUTIFUL NIAGARA One of the safest places to live or visit in Canada with multiple opportunties to explore.

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NIAGARA NEW DEVELOPMENT HIGHLIGHTS Amidst the health crisis, Niagara continues to strive and deliver a progressive economy.

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In This Together.

note from the

PUBLISHERS

We recently took a step back to reflect on the last four years of our publishing journey, and how wild this ride has been for us, but also how incredibly rewarding. It’s been a dream come true to pull together each and every magazine, and to build our brand together. It’s been said that it’s not about the destination, but the journey along the way and we couldn’t agree more. We have had the distinct pleasure of meeting and collaborating with some exceptionally talented people from all walks of life, all over the world, and we have some new adventures on the horizon that we cannot wait to explore. And to think, we are just getting started. While it’s nice to reflect on how far we’ve come these past few years, it’s also been a wild ride these past couple of months. We have all been faced with unparalleled circumstances, as this pandemic has unfolded and taken the world by storm. It’s hard to express concisely what we’ve all been through, everyone navigating their own unique situations as best they can. Things are forever changed, and as difficult as it has been, we have been inspired by the grace and love that has moved through our community. We have seen businesses and neighbourhoods come together to raise one another up all across Niagara, and this is one of many reasons why we know that Niagara will remain strong and persevere through. In this issue, it is important to us that we continue to create something that not only resonates with Niagara, but also with those around the world that are truly interested in what we’re all about. That word, NIAGARA, is worldrenowned, and for good reason. We are a beautiful place to live, to grow, and to build business. We are economically strong, and we have the brightest future ahead of us, because we are in this together. Whether you live, work, or play here, we hope that you enjoy reading this issue as much as we enjoyed putting it together. Above all, we wish you and your loved ones the greatest health and safety. Sincerely,

Rowe & Brandy

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REVEAL BUSINESS MAGAZINE JUNE 2020 |

NIAGARA BUSINESS MAGAZINE Volume 1 • Issue 3

PUBLISHERS Rowe Prudente Brandy Henderson

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With Niagara’s ever-changing economic landscape, it is critically important to deliver highly relevant and engaging content to the businesses here while connecting the leaders of today and tomorrow throughout the region. It is out commitment to be the leading platform that delivers meaningful, effective and thoughtprovoking content, both internal and external to out community. We are proud to empower Niagara by bringing you this regional B2B publication, offering vital information for your business and the latest information impacting our Niagara community.

on the cover

EDITOR & CREATIVE DIRECTOR Rowe Prudente MANAGING EDITOR Brandy Henderson ACCOUNT MANAGERS: Brian Fletcher brian@owneragroup.com 905.380.4005 Steven Cahill steven@owneragroup.com 905.321.6970 Miguel Mori miguel@owneragroup.com 905.980.0856 TECHNOLOGY PARTNER Julio Batres-Gavidia, Paradigm Ventures Niagara DESIGN COORDINATOR Raine Gould PHOTOGRAPHY CONTRIBUTORS Emily Winterbottom stock photos @unsplash WRITERS Brandy Henderson Erin King Gabrielle Tieman-Lee Mauricio Zuluaga

Congratulations Pro Battery Shops pg. 24

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Reveal Magazine is published by Ownera Media, a subsidiary of Ownera Group Inc. Opinions expressed in Reveal Magazine are not necessarily those of Ownera Media or Ownera Group Inc, their owners, employees or stakeholders. All submitted content inclusive of photography is assumed to be intended for publication. The right to edit, alter or refuse content is assumed. All material and content submitted to Ownera Media for purpose of publication is done so at the risk of the submitter. Ownera Media does not guarantee the accuracy, completeness or timeliness of the information contained in this publication. Ownera Media is not responsible for any products or services of any third-party advertiser or the content in any advertising of such advertisers.

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NNI IAA GG AA R AA BB UUS SI N I NE SE SS SM AMG AA GZ IANZ EI N E

expand your reach OUR MAGAZINE IS READ AND SHARED OUR MAGAZINE IS READ AND 3 4 COUNTRIES. SHAREDIN IN OVER OVER29

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REVEAL Niagara Business Magazine • Volume 1 Issue 2 • 2019


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CONTENTS economics marketing technology cover feature health & safety business

real estate & development the edge

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NIAGARA ECONOMY BEGINS TO RE-OPEN SAFELY SUPPLIERS, RETAILERS, & CONSUMERS ARE CHANGING SHOP LOCAL

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BARE BRAND

22

MY FAVOURITE TECH

24

MEET THE PRO BATTERY FAMILY

30 32

THE IMPORTANCE OF [PPE] RE-OPEN READINESS & REDUCING RISK

37 NIAGARA TOURISM UP FOR THE CHALLENGE 41 INVEST IN YOUR PEOPLE 45 THE EVOLUTION OF OFFICE SPACE 48 TIPS TO MARKET YOURSELF BACK TO WORK 50 WHAT WORKS & WHAT MAY NOT ANYMORE 51 INFORMATION YOU CAN CUSTOMIZE TO STRENGTHEN YOUR BUSINESS DURING AND AFTER THIS HEALTH CRISIS 52 LIQUIDITY, THE REAL RESILIENCE CAPACITY 56 WHAT DOES BUSINESS LOOK LIKE FOR THOSE WHOSE MARKETS ARE OUTSIDE OF NIAGARA 58 61

INVEST OR LIVE HERE NIAGARA NEW DEVELOPMENT HIGHLIGHTS

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INFORMATION FOR THE NEXT LEVEL OF SUCCESS

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We support physical distancing .

GlassInc.com | 4735 Kent Avenue, Niagara Falls, ON L2H 1J3 | 289.341.0220 | jsimonetti@glassinc.ca​


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THANK YOU TO OUR CONTRIBUTORS JIM DIODATI Mayor City of Niagara Falls WAYNE THOMSON Councillor City of Niagara Falls DINO MIELE CEO & Founder of Innovation & Entrepreneurship, & Former Chief Information Officer of DSBN JESSICA FRIESEN CEO Gales Gas Bars BOB’s Fast & Fresh Convenience AARON TISDELLE President Girotti Machine VALERIE KUHNS Acting Director Economic Development Niagara Region MISCHA BALSOM CEO Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce JUAN GONZALEZ Business Director Trinity Capital International DR. RICHARD MCFADDEN Chiropractor McFadden Chiropractic & Massage Clinic Niagara PAUL DI IANNI Officer Economic Development Town of Lincoln LINA DECHELLIS Officer Economic Development City of Welland ANGELA DAVIDSON Officer Economic Development City of Niagara Falls WILLIAM KOLASA Officer Economic Development Township of Wainfleet JULIA SEBASTIAN CEO HR OffSite KELLY JONES Program Coordinator, Employment Solutions PAOLO MIELE Owner Good Eats Diner JONAS MARTIN Broker Realty Network: 100 Inc.

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NIAGARA ECONOMY BEGINS TO RE-OPEN SAFELY It has been inspiring to see our business community pulling together during this humanitarian global crisis. As businesses across Niagara continue to pivot and navigate various phases of re-opening to the public safely, we connected with a few of our key leaders to provide additional valuable insight: NIAGARA REGION Valerie Kuhns, Acting Director for Economic Development Niagara Region “Since the COVID-19 pandemic reached our community, Niagara Economic Development has been collaborating with all economic development offices across Niagara to support businesses in our region. We are working together as the Niagara Economic Rapid Response Team (ERRT). Our team has been connecting 10

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businesses with the latest information and guidance from Niagara Region Public Health, as well as the economic support available from the provincial and federal governments. Businesses seeking support are encouraged to reach out to us through our website at errt.niagararegion.ca. We are gathering critical data on the unique effects COVID-19 has had on our business community, through two business impact surveys. This information will be vital in informing Niagara’s recovery. The report on the results of the first survey has been widely shared with our regional stakeholders as well as the provincial and federal governments. We’ve also been working together with businesses to support them in remaining connected with their customers. Early in May, we launched OpenInNiagara.ca, a free online directory that lists businesses across Niagara who have modified their

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business practices to allow them to continue to serve customers during the pandemic. Information is crowdsourced and open to all businesses, regardless of community or sector. Already we have over 300 businesses who have added their information. We have promoted the website extensively through print, digital and social media channels to encourage Niagara residents to buy local and support our businesses. The road to Niagara’s economic recovery will be a long one. Continued collaboration between government and businesses will ensure Niagara is wellpositioned to overcome the challenges and embrace the opportunities that await us in the coming months and years.” TOWN OF LINCOLN Paul Di Ianni, Economic Development Officer


Avez-vous besoin d’employé(e)s? Do you need employees?

“The road to Niagara’s economic recovery will be a long one. Continued collaboration between government and businesses will ensure Niagara is well-positioned to overcome the challenges and embrace the opportunities that await us in the coming months and years.” Valerie Kuhns, Acting Director Economic Development, Niagara Region

“These unprecedented times have caused a drastic, rapid shift in every type of business practice. Everything from personal hygiene to new business standards are going to be recognized as the “new normal” for years to come. To maintain safe business practices, EcDev and businesses can work together to appropriately adapt each business throughout their community to these new standards. Although consumer behaviour will change throughout COVID-19, there is still a market for existing goods and services throughout communities. Helping businesses adapt rapidly and effectively to reaching their end-user is one way the businesses community and EcDev departments can work together. Furthermore, as businesses discover safe and effective activities, EcDev departments from across Canada can adopt these practices throughout their businesses community to ensure safety for employees and customers. As a Country

we are in this pandemic together and safe business practices should not be bordered by municipal, regional and provincial boundaries.” CITY OF WELLAND Lina DeChellis, Economic Development Officer “Together we must ensure that businesses follow through with Provincial guidelines for reopening and for what is essentially going to be the new normal. In order to help businesses governments need to reduce barriers and costs “cut red tape” and make it easier for businesses to access government services (Federal, Provincial, and Municipal) which they will need now more than ever. The City of Welland EcDevDepartment, Mayor & CAO have had two “Virtual Roundtable” meetings with local business to discuss strategies and ideas to assist when Province eases restrictions and to hear how Welland and other levels of government can help.”

Le Centre d’emploi peut vous aider à trouver des employé(e)s.

Nous sommes ENCORE ICI pour vous servir même PENDANT LA PANDÉMIE Francophone Employment can help you find employees.

We are STILL HERE to serve you even DURING THE PANDEMIC

info@cerfniagara.com

905.714.1480

905.714.1480 www.cerfniagara.com 300, rue Lincoln, Welland ON L3B 4N4

The Employment Ontario service is funded in part by The Government of Canada


Everything from how we shop to how we cook POST-COVID is different, so Food Consumption & Waste what is this “new normal” when it comes to how we eat?

Covid-19 has had a far-reaching effect on the world. Being sheltered in place has meant changing old habits and creating new ones for many. We see rapid changes in consumer habits, and nowhere has this been more apparent than in our relationship to food.

“While businesses find ways to prosper in the post-COVID landscape, people continue to adapt to the new normal.”

But with some restaurants still offering take out, others are selling raw ingredients in bulk and changing how we get our food to the table in this new slant. Some restaurants, such as Good Eats Diner in St. Catharines, are now offering bulk items such as meat, olive oil, and eggs for pick up as well as traditional take-out. Unfortunately, according to Waste 360, with the closure of schools, restaurants, theme parks, and cruise ships, items like produce and milk are being thrown out in mass quantities because of lack of demand. Here in Canada, we are facing surplus destruction of potatoes since Canadians eat most of their potatoes in restaurants. There are currently about 200 million pounds of frozen french fries in storage piling up with no one to buy them. Destruction of other crops such as mushrooms, carrots, lettuce, and onions continue because they cannot be sold or given away. For many farmers who sell to wholesale establishments, the cost of repackaging their goods for the retail market is cost-prohibitive. On the bright side, the Dairy Farmers of Canada have donated over 2.5 million litres of milk to food banks while looking to a solution to their milk production issues. With so many restaurants unable to deliver their goods in traditional ways, many Canadians are cooking for themselves. The trend towards home cooking has taken an upturn. This is good news according to (Nutritionist quote here, and expand on the topic of waste at home )

Grocery stores have risen to the challenge by installing social distancing measures from limiting the number of people in stores to protective guards around cashiers. Most have implemented senior hours early in the day, limiting in-store shoppers, requiring facemasks, using only in-store plastic bags, and cash-less payment. As the trend towards home cooking changes, consumer habits such as online shopping and buying local is expected to continue even after the pandemic, according to Canadian Grocer.

While businesses find ways to prosper in the post-COVID landscape, people continue to adapt to the new normal. With their ever-changing relationship to the way they will shop and eat in the future.

SUPPLIERS, RETAILERS, & CONSUMERS ARE CHANGING HOW THEY HANDLE SUPPLY, CONSUMPTION, & WASTE. by Erin King

Covid-19 has had a far-reaching effect on the world. Being sheltered in place has meant changing old habits and creating new ones for many. We see rapid changes in consumer habits, and nowhere has this been more apparent than in our relationship to food.

bulk and changing how we get our food to the table in this new slant. Some restaurants, such as Good Eats Diner in St. Catharines are now offering bulk items such as meat, olive oil, and eggs for pick up as well as traditional take-out.

Everything from how we shop to how we cook is different, so what is this “new normal” when it comes to how we eat?

“When Toronto Mayor John Tory started talking about closing restaurants in early March in the Toronto area, I knew the rest of the province would follow. The day we closed I created a new business plan and that was to use our excellent suppliers to offer fresh quality bulk meats and canned goods. Customers have been amazingly supportive and this has allowed us to continue to pay our rent and utilities.” - Paolo Miele, Good Eats Diner, St. Catharines

Grocery stores have risen to the challenge by installing social distancing measures from limiting the number of people in stores to protective guards around cashiers. Most have implemented senior hours early in the day, limiting in-store shoppers, requiring facemasks, using only in-store plastic bags, and cashless payment. As the trend towards home cooking changes, consumer habits such as online shopping and buying locally are expected to continue even after the pandemic, according to Canadian Grocer. But with some restaurants still offering take out, others are selling raw ingredients in 12

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Unfortunately, according to Waste 360, with the closure of schools, restaurants, theme parks, and cruise ships, items like produce and milk are being thrown out in mass quantities because of lack of demand. Here in Canada, we’re facing surplus destruction of potatoes, since Canadians eat


OVER

CITY OF NIAGARA FALLS Located in the heart of North America’s most affluent consumer market, Niagara Falls is a dynamic, internationally renowned city with a prosperous business community. Niagara Falls is a global marketplace destination with a direct, same day market area of over 150 million consumers, and is built on an economic foundation anchored by tourism, manufacturing, commercial retail, and knowledge-based sectors. We are linked to the world by extensive road, rail, water, air, and telecommunications networks. In addition to having desirable industrial and commercial real estate, Niagara Falls offers a reasonable cost of living and some of the most attractive residential communities in all of Canada. With these advantages and amenities, it’s no wonder that local, national, and international companies exceed their expectations and expand their operations in Niagara Falls. We welcome your business. Come see all the opportunities that flow in Niagara Falls, Canada.

• • • • • • • •

most of their potatoes in restaurants. There are currently about 200 million pounds of Strategic location advantages in include: frozen french fries in storage piling up with Internationally Recognized Address no one to buy them. Destruction of other crops such Trade as mushrooms, carrots, lettuce, Canadian Foreign Zone Designation and onions continues because can’t be Niagara Economic Gateway Incentive they Programs sold or given away. For many farmers who Ontario’s extensive 400 series highways and I-90 corrisell tothe wholesale establishments, the cost of dor through United States repackaging their goods for the retail market Five airports within a 90-minute radius is cost-prohibitive. The St. Lawrence Seaway commercial waterway On the bright side, the Dairy Farmers of Commercial and passenger rail crossings connecting Canada have donated over 2.5 million liters the United States and Canada. of milk to food banks while looking for a Four bridges connecting Niagara to the United States solution to their milk production issues.

OF

FUELLING

FULL SERVE SELF SERVE NIAGARA FALLS Thorold Stone Rd. at Montrose Rd. Thorold Stone Rd. at St. Peter Ave. Drummond Rd. at Scott St. Lundy’s Lane at Carlton St. Bridge St. at Victoria Ave. Portage Rd. at Norton St. NIAGARA-ON-THE-LAKE York Road Niagara Stone Rd. at Creek Rd. FORT ERIE Gilmore Rd. ST. CATHARINES St. Paul St. West at Louth St. Ontario St. at GM Plant Welland Ave. at Francis St. Martindale Rd. at Hannover St. THOROLD Collier Rd. at Confederation

With so many restaurants unable to deliver their goods in traditional ways, many Canadians are cooking for themselves. The trend towards home cooking has taken an upturn. So while businesses find ways to prosper in

the post-COVID landscape, peopleSERGE continue BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT FELICETTI DEPARTMENT Business to adapt to the new Director normal.ofWith theirDevelopment everNiagara Falls City Hall changing relationship to thesfelicetti@niagarafalls.ca way they will 4310 Queen Street Niagara Falls 905-356-7521 shop and eat in the future. L2E 6X5 Ext. 5102

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REVEAL Niagara Business Magazine • Volume 1 Issue 2 • 2019 niagarafallsbusiness.ca

OW NED & OPER ATE D


Reveal Magazines in collaborations with the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce & Brandy Henderson, Co-Chair, Women In Niagara Council

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Shop

LOCAL by Mishka Balsom CEO of the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce

T

he COVID-19 pandemic has brought on swift changes to all aspects of life, and has impacted every business and every person in one way or another. This is the most disruptive event that most of us have ever experienced. Over three million Canadians have lost their jobs, 2.5 million have had their hours reduced by more than half, and 3.3 million are now working from home. In April, more than a third of the entire Canadian labour force was not working, or worked less than half of their regular hours. |

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In these unprecedented times, it is more important than ever to remember that we are part of a community, and to support one another. It is easy to feel distanced and alienated in this era of self-isolation and lockdown. Our participation in public spaces and public life has been curtailed. Our contact with people outside our own households has been limited: a masked greeting to a grocery store cashier through an acrylic screen, a wave to a delivery driver already back in the truck when you answer the door, or a smile through a car window as you open your trunk for a curbside pickup. Our community is where we live, work and play. It’s where we hang out, catch up with friends and family over a coffee, listen to a band, or visit a supper market. It’s where we work, and often our workplaces are more than a source of income: co-workers are our friends, and in many cases, a workplace a home away from home. REVEAL NIAGARA BUSINESS MAGAZINE

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If you haven’t already done so, register your business on these directory sites for free!

A ‘Shop Local’ guide organized by category that spans across Niagara.

An interactive map with filters and keyword searches.

Reveal Magazines in collaborations with the Greater Niagara Chamber of Commerce & Brandy Henderson, Co-Chair, Women In Niagara Council

Interwoven into the fabric of our community, supporting and delivering all of these aspects of our shared lives, are local businesses. They are the retailers and wineries, the restaurants and hotels, the car dealers and art galleries, the farmers and chefs at the local markets. They are part of our community, and they have been as devastated by these developments as any of us. We all have our favourite shops and services. It saddens us when we see the ‘closed’ signs hung in so many of their doors. Some of them will never re-open. Canadian small businesses have been hit hardest by COVID-19. The April Labour Force Survey data showed that almost one in three people working for a small business had lost their jobs since February, but only one in eight employees at firms with more than a hundred staff were now out of work. 60% of self-employed people worked less than half their usual hours in April, and 38% of them did not work at all. Local businesses, however, are fighting back. Many have embraced the new measures, have expanded delivery and pick-up options, or have developed online shopping platforms. They are working to ensure that those who considered them part of the community, who enjoyed and needed what they provided, can continue to do so. And as organizations are preparing to reopen their doors in the weeks to come, now, more than ever, we must support them. Supporting local businesses means supporting our communities, and supporting each other.

to continue serving you. They want you to buy from them, as you used to – maybe online, maybe through delivery, but they want to earn your business again. We must also ask what we want the future of Niagara’s business landscape to look like. If we want to have local shops and local services once the crisis is over, we will have to act now by giving them our business. Many people have been severely affected financially by this crisis. Our hearts go out to them, and we hope that a swift economic recovery will help them back on their feet. For those of us still fortunate to have work, and incomes, we must support our community, and our local businesses. We can emerge from this crisis stronger than when we started, if we work together. Organizations and community members are uniting to support citizens and businesses through these times by actively encouraging everyone, whenever possible, to buy local or to order from a local business online. It will stimulate our economy. Numerous SHOP LOCAL initiatives aim to help local businesses get through the crisis while showcasing the variety of products and services available in Niagara. Every small act gives our business community hope. We are all in this together and we will get through this together. For more information on GNCC’s SHOP LOCAL initiative, check out gncc.ca

We all have our favourite businesses. If we have taken them for granted in the past, we don’t anymore. And those businesses just want

#

Shop

A one-stop solution to connect Lincoln businesses and customers.

An easy to use directory with easily viewable modified hours and services.

A pickup & delivery focused directory designed for your convenience.

A color coded, interactive map organized by service category.

Local essentials currently available that are listed in an easy to navigate directory.

LOCAL A directory of essential services and modified offerings

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| An niagarafalls.ca economic wonder with lots of opportunity for An economic wonder with lots of opportunity businesses businesses and residents to live,forwork, and play. and residents to live, work and play.

NiagaraFalls.ca | NiagaraFallsBusiness.ca


BARE

BRAND Now is the time to revisit your brand strategies. It is so critical to stay current.

written by: Brandy Henderson

For 18

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many businesses, branding and marketing has the potential to be confusing and overwhelming. Not knowing where to start and understanding how to ensure your investments are the right ones at the right time can be daunting. Add a global crisis and to this mix, and the waters can become very muddy and unclear.

core, remains unchanged. Ensuring that your mission can be carried out amidst a crisis and also have a bright future beyond that crisis is why you need to take stock of your marketing and advertising initiatives, and not lose sight of how critically important it is to continue. The fact of the matter is that it will make the difference between whether your road to recovery is as short as possible, or potentially long and painful.

Although the world may be changing, it is important to reflect upon your company mission and the purpose behind why you do what you do. It is likely that your mission, at its

Once you come to terms with the fact that you cannot let your foot off the gas as it relates to marketing your brand, you need to revisit your strategy.

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REVEAL BUSINESS MAGAZINE JUNE 2020 |

Here are a few questions to ask yourself:

BE VALUE-BASED, NOT PRODUCT-BASED

REVIEW YOUR EXISTING ONLINE PRESENCE

Your messaging needs to be relevant to your business, but the last thing you want is to appear to be tone-deaf based upon current circumstances. During times like these, you need to focus less on the actual product or service you provide, and share more about your values, goals and impact in the community. Being more forth-coming about who you are as an organization may not convert to high volume sales on the spot, but it will build up your brand loyalty and place you ahead of your competitors when budgets begin opening up. When developing your content, evaluate the authenticity of your messaging and assess how it will be interpreted. Make sure it shows that you care and have compassion, and that it offers a solution or adds value.

Whether you have intentionally invested in an online presence or not, you have one. Simply put, it is no longer acceptable for a business to claim an online presence is not needed. Our world relies on digital technology to communicate, and the recent crisis has only accelerated the necessity of leveraging our digital world to its fullest potential. Take the time to step back and review what your online presence says about your brand. If you are a small business that has had little to invest in this space, that is ok, as you can still control the message and be visible without overcomplicating it.

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1. Have I created my “Google my Business� business profile? 2. Do I have a clean and simple website that represents my brand? 3. Do I exist on the social platforms that connect with my direct target audience? 4. Do I have an easily accessible way for consumers to contact me, that is clearly visible on my online channels? These are truly the bare minimum, and our current circumstances have only made them a pure necessity for people to be aware of and interact with your brand.

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ASSESS YOUR WEBSITE

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COMMIT TO YOUR GO BEYOND SOCIAL SOCIAL MEDIA PRESENCE MEDIA ADVERTISING COMMIT TO YOUR GO BEYOND SOCIAL This is an unavoidable cost of business Every business that has used social COMMIT TO YOUR GO BEYOND SOCIAL Open it up and ask yourself these questions: SOCIAL MEDIA PRESENCE MEDIA ADVERTISING in todays age and can be an excellent media has probably boosted a post or SOCIAL MEDIA PRESENCE MEDIA ADVERTISING 1. Is my website visually interesting and user-focused?

ASSESS WEBSITE The biggestYOUR anchor, because it is often the first thing people will find or try to find, is brand-building tool when the done form of paid advertising. The biggest anchor, have because is often your website. Websites been itpublicly This is an unavoidable costused of business Every some business that has used social ASSESS YOUR WEBSITE right way, especially right now when This topic alone can take the length 2. Does my website clearly convey what my business does and why? This is an unavoidable cost of business Every business that has used social the first thing people willsofind oristry accessible for YOUR over 20 years, there no in todays age and can be an excellent media has probably boosted a post of or a ASSESS WEBSITE are online more then ever novel or two just to scratch the surface, in people todays age and can be an excellent media has probably boosted a post or to find, is your website. Websites have acceptable excuse for a sub-par website, let brand-building tool when the done of paid advertising. 3. Can visitors get what theyused require from my website in asome clean form and simple manner? 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Set aside the time to review, may come our way, these are exercises and then ensure those plans make sense your as way forms, aside the time to review, adjust and that social media ads aresite, not such the only of theseed channels the right way at right be. Set aside dedicated, uninterruptplatform forfor your company. may come ouraway way, these arebasis. exercises time every 4 weeks tothe plan andtime through some of the elementsThink that adjust and implement on an ongoing you can never step from. Set are executed. Each time you rotate mailing integrations, e-comm API’s and advertising online. 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Each time you rotate That beonline Facebook Instagram mailing integrations, e-comm and through the pattern, your strategy anything else may required to makeorAPI’s the most implement on an ongoing basis. the momentum. pattern, your strategy willthrough build more anything else required toexperience. make the most of your customers’ online REVEALMAGS.COM | OWNERA MEDIA a subsidiary of OWNERA Group Inc. will build more momentum. of your customers’ online experience.


My

Favourite Tech by: Brandy Henderson

.............

New technology that helped us through while staying home & keeping safe.

These past few months have given many of us the opportunity to dive in and try new things. Some we’ve always wanted to try but couldn’t find the time or were unsure of whether it was necessary, and others we’ve had to explore because we just had no other choice. Whether working from home or running a company remotely, homeschooling and learning how to teach or doing everything all at once under one roof, it’s no doubt that life is a handful right now for everyone. We’ve heard from a lot of our readers that there have been some incredible discoveries throughout this journey that they can’t believe they ever lived without. We thought we would share with you just 10 examples of what our readers have claimed to be lifesavers, whether its software or a cool piece of gear.

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Click the link if you’d like more information about these products.


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Sennheiser HD 450BT

Dyson Lightcyle This innovative desk lamp really stands out during quarantine, because it provides light that is similar to natural daylight. Protecting your eyes from the unnecessary eye strain, this intelligent lamp adjusts the light based upon the time of day and then modifies it according to what type of natural light you may already be exposed to. The lamp can get even more intelligent through its smartphone app, detecting sleep patterns and adjusting to your habits.

These stylish, wireless headphones are packed with great sound and bass. They offer active noise cancellation, a great feature for the currently over-crowded home, and come with voice assistant access and 30-hour battery life. The compact, lightweight, foldable design also makes them easy to travel with. A true lifesaver. .

Google Hangouts Meet

Brilliant Control A WiFi wall switch designed to control various smart devices in your home, allowing you to play music, control lighting, set thermostat temperatures, and see who is at your door. Compatible with popular smart home platforms including Ecobee & Nest and has built-in Alexa voice support that allows it to do almost everything an Echo device can do.

QuardioBase 2 Being quarantined at home is tough on the body for the entire family, and using technology at home to help keep tabs on how you’re doing just makes good sense. It tracks fat, BMI, water, muscle mass, bone composition, and even pregnancy. It shares the info it reads with a smartphone app for your easy access. It also looks great.

To help businesses and schools working remotely due to coronavirus, Google has granted access at no charge to its premium features for workplace video chat tools. Allowing up to 250 participants per call, live streaming for up to 100,000 viewers within a single domain, and the ability to record and save has been quite a blessing.

Netgear Wi-Fi Range Extender This is a great device to boost your wi-fi signal and get the fastest streaming power, especially with the additional demand at home for connectivity, keeping mobile devices, media players and computers all connected with a fast, reliable connection that can reach every corner of your home.

Check them out, and if you have a favourite piece of technology that has helped you get through these times that didn’t make the list, drop us a note - we’d love to hear about it.

REVEAL NIAGARA BUSINESS MAGAZINE

| VOL. 1 | ISSUE 3


5

POWER DRIVEN POWER

NIAGAR A REGION’S PREMIER BAT TERY STORE NIAGAR A REGION’S PREMIER BAT TERY STORE

POWER DRIVEN DRIVEN POWER DRIVEN

Pure Power. Pure Performance.

Whether users count on their PurePure Power. Power. equipment for work, to play golf or to Pure Performance. drive around their community, they Pure Performance.

Congratulations on your 5 year Congratulations anniversary. on your 5 year anniversary.

expect performance on demand from Whether users count on their their electric vehicle. equipment for work,users to play golf or to on their Whether count We do too. Crown Deep Cycle Puretheir Power. drive around community, they Batteries are designed, built and equipment for work, to play golf or to Pure Performance. expect performance on demand from proven to perform longer and charge Whether users count on their easier than competitive drivevehicle. around their community, theyproducts. their electric equipment for work, to play golf or to their community, they Wedrive do around too. Crown Deep Cycle expect performance on demand from Batteries are designed, built and their electric vehicle.

That’s why Crown Batteries are the

of golf car andfrom EV equipment expect performance onchoice demand specialists and owners alike. their electric vehicle.

proven to perform longer and charge We do too. Crown Deep Cycle Congratulations easier than Batteries arecompetitive designed, built products. and We do too. Crown Deep Cycle ProBattery Shops! proven to perform and charge That’s why Crownlonger Batteries are the easierBatteries than competitive products. designed, built and choice of golf car andare EV equipment That’s why Crown Batteries are the specialists and alike. choiceproven of golf carowners andto EV equipment perform longer and charge specialists and owners alike.

easier than competitive products. Congratulations Congratulations That’s why Crown Batteries are the ProBattery Shops! ProBattery Shops! www.crownbattery.com choice of golf car and EV equipment

FROM YOUR PARTNERS AT:

FROM YOUR PARTNERS AT:


REVEAL BUSINESS MAGAZINE JUNE 2020 |

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Photography: Emily Winterbottom

on the cover

Congratulations

PRO BATTERY SHOPS Reveal Business Magazine talks to a Niagara-based, familyowned & operated business, Pro Battery Shops, about their journey and batteries, big and small. Join us as we celebrate their 5th year anniversary.

1874 RR 20 #8A, Fonthill, ON L0S 1E6 | (905) 892-8585 | ProBatteryShops.com REVEAL NIAGARA BUSINESS MAGAZINE

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On this photograph, meet the Forbes, (from left to right) Justin, Ashleigh, Kelli, Scott and their beautiful dog, Bella.

PASSIONATE TO ENSURE YOUR VEHICLES KEEP MOVING, MEET THE FORBES – THE PRO BATTERY SHOPS FAMILY. Describe to us your humble beginning?

In 2014 we emigrated from Trinidad and Tobago and After having vacationed in Canada on numerous occasions we knew that the Niagara Region felt like “home” for us. Drawing on twenty (20) plus years experience in the battery business, we saw an opportunity to start something that we felt would be impactful in the region so we began researching and reaching out to previously established contacts in the battery industry to see if we would have

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[

In a family business, apart from loving the people we work with, we share our success with each other everyday, that we are building out of our passion for what we do.

the right vendors to work with. Then in March of 2015 we sought out a location that we felt best covered the region and thus Pro Battery Shops was born. Like many businesses the first 3 years were very challenging particularly as we sought to find our place in a new business in a new country, but we were confident that once we stuck true to our core values and customer centered approach, we would overcome these challenges. For the first 2 years we had a rep who did an amazing job at getting our name out there and helping us to identify potential customers in the region. Although he no longer works with us, we remain grateful for all of his efforts during that time and for the relationship that we enjoy to this day. As a family business, how does an average day at the shop look like? We each have different focus areas of the business that are our strengths with Customer Service being our main focus. Scott takes on the Technical and Industrial Sales/Customer Service, Kelli is in charge of Administration and Retail Sales/Customer Service and Justin

focuses on Outside Sales and Customer Service. In a family business, apart from loving the people we work with, we share our success with each other everyday, that we are building out of our passion for what we do. What could be more special than that right? We work hard to try to keep the home and business separate and for the most part have been successful at it. We rarely talk shop at home and that helps.

What type of customers do you typically work with?

Our customer range is really broad and diverse, ranging from the average homeowner looking for a lawn tractor battery, companies in need of batteries for their UPS machines, a parent calling for a battery for their kids ride on toy, motorcyclists/ATV enthusiasts, the elderly looking for mobility scooter batteries, people who are eager to hit the water, golf courses and camp grounds looking for marine, golf cart and deep cycle batteries, auto garages looking for a reliable automotive

battery supplier and especially the commercial and heavy industrial customer looking for a specific battery for an application, or a solution to an ongoing battery problem which is where our years of experience and knowhow are best put to use.

What is your process for large or small battery orders?

We are generally same day delivery for all customers with the rare exception. Batteries are a distress purchase so One of the areas we do focus strongly on is ensuring that we have a wide range of batteries in stock to supply our customer’s needs.

Where do your customers come from? Our customers are based in the Niagara Region from Smithville to Fort Erie to Wainfleet and even to Port Dover for marine batteries.

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What kind of batteries do you carry? Drawing on years of experience in this industry, when we decided to launch our own brand here in Canada we were very selective on the manufacturer that we partnered with, knowing the importance of offering a high quality product at a competitive price with consistent supply and after sales service to ensure that we build a strong reputation in this market. It has not always been easy and we constantly get called on to sell other manufacturer’s products based on lower pricing, but having had almost 15 years of history selling our manufacturer’s product (under different brand names) we know that we have a product that we can stand proudly behind and hang our name and reputation on.

What are your short-term and long-term goals? Short Term: To continue our efforts to establish ourselves in the region by working to build and maintain our customers trust through honest, value driven, customer focused service and being a socially responsible member of the local business community. Long Term:To be the first choice for batteries and battery related products in the Niagara Region. 28

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How are you helping the community during Canada COVID-19 Response? Since the COVID-19 lock down, as an essential service we started offering free contactless home deliveries for purchases over $100.00, along with hassle free curbside ordering, plus uninterrupted regular deliveries to our fleet and wholesale customers who were also considered essential during this time. It has been truly humbling to see the support of our customers during this time and reminds us everyday of what we love about Niagara and how much we appreciate the trust and loyalty of our customers, both wholesale and retail.

How will your company operate after lockdown restrictions? Similar to other businesses, we have certain measures put in place in store for instance the installation of plexi-glass on our counter tops to limit exposure, Along with regular sanitizing between customers and limiting casual in person sales calling to our wholesale accounts.

REVEALMAGS.COM | OWNERA MEDIA a subsidiary of OWNERA Group Inc.

Have you had any customer battery disaster scenarios that you have solved? There is one that always comes to mind… a couple years ago we were contacted by one of our wholesale customers to evaluate the state of a bank of back up batteries for a major community facility in Niagara. This bank of batteries is relied upon to power the entire facility, including emergency lighting and equipment in the event of a power failure. Upon inspecting the system we encountered multiple batteries that were on the brink of critical failure and may have themselves caused a major accident within the facility. We called on our vendors and by the next day we had all 58 batteries swapped out for the customer. This one was memorable and surely left us with some sore muscles seeing each battery weighed approx. 65lbs and we had to remove the old ones to have them responsibly recycled. Thank you for taking the time to speak with us, Scott, Kelli, Ashleigh, and Justin, it’s truly an honour to have you in our Niagara community and we can’t thank you enough for the services you’re making especially during this critical time that we are all faced with. Again, thank you! – Reveal Magazines


Battery Saving Tips While Your Vehicle Is Not In Use A battery is not an infinite supply of power and most vehicles have a small, constant power draw on your battery. How long a vehicle sits before the battery dies all depends on the car, but there are steps you can take with any vehicle to preserve a battery’s health: CHARGE BAT TERY WEEKLY BY DRIVING CAR FOR AT LEAST 30 MINUTES As your car sits, the battery must keep all the memory stored for your clock , stereo system and the many onboard computers in the vehicle. While the battery drain doesn’ t seem like much, it adds up over time and could get to the point where there is not enough energy left to crank the engine. Running short errands a few times a week is not enough to keep your battery in good health. If you only use your car for short trips or keep it parked for days at a time, the battery won’t have time to recharge sufficiently. To keep your battery adequately charged, it is recommended that you drive the vehicle once a week for at least 30 minutes, preferably at highway speeds to ensure that the battery gets a proper charge.

Congratulations on your 5-year anniversary.

USING A BAT TERY MAINTAINER If your car is parked somewhere close to a Hydro outlet , you can leave a battery maintainer connected to your battery which will ensure that your battery remains fully charged during extended down time and also maintain full power to your car ’s various onboard computers. FOR SEASONAL EQUIPMENT Seasonal equipment such as motorcycles, atv ’s, lawn tractors etc can also benefit greatly from using a battery maintainer when not in use for long periods (including over the winter). This again will ensure that your battery remains fully charged and ready for the next time that you use it. Another option is to remove the negative cable from the battery when these items are being stored. It is important to be sure that the battery is fully charged before you do this. MOBILIT Y SCOOTERS / EBIKES You want to charge these batteries at least once every 4 – 6 weeks when not in use. These units come with their own battery chargers which is what must be used to recharge the battery bank. We recommend using a simple timer on the hydro outlet to avoid overcharging these batteries by running the charger for too long.

From your TCED team


OUR LIVES HAVE CHANGED SINCE THE OUTBREAK OF COVID-19. OVER A FEW SHORT MONTHS, THE WORLD WAS MADE AWARE OF THE FLAWS IN OUR STANDARD HEALTH AND SAFETY HABITS AND WHAT NEEDED TO CHANGE TO CORRECT OUR HABITUAL ERRORS; PROPER HAND WASHING WAS TAUGHT, SOCIAL INTERACTIONS WERE LIMITED AND AN OVER ALL QUIETING OF OUR LIVES ENSUED. BUT THE MOST EYEOPENING OF ALL FOR THE AVERAGE CITIZEN: THE EXTREME IMPORTANCE OF PERSONAL PROTECTIVE EQUIPMENT AND THE RESULTING INFECTIOUS SPREAD WHEN ACCESS WAS LIMITED. 30

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THE IMPORTANCE OF [PPE] BY GABRIELLE TIEMAN-LEE

! Our lives have changed since the outbreak of Covid-19. Over a few short months, the world was made aware of the flaws in our standard health and safety habits and what needed to change to correct our habitual errors; proper hand washing was taught, social interactions were limited and an over all quieting of our lives ensued. But the most eye-opening of all for the average citizen: the extreme importance of personal protective equipment and the resulting infectious spread when access was limited. A recent study in the British Medical Journal [conducted by researchers in China and the United Kingdom] found that during the COVID-19 outbreak, nurses and doctors who worked in highly exposed environments but were appropriately protected with proper personal protective equipment (PPE) did not contract the infection. Surveys of nurses and other staff conducted during the peak weeks of the pandemic regularly reported that PPE shortages were both a problem and a major source of concern for the safety of those on the front line. And though this equipment is considered essential during a virus outbreak, acquiring

PPE has been one of the government’s biggest challenges throughout the course of the pandemic; from struggling shipments, overworked factories and countries outbidding each other for access to a limited supply of masks, respirators and other key medical items. “As such, they say healthcare systems ‘Must give priority to the procurement and distribution of personal protective equipment and provide adequate training to healthcare professionals in its use,” said the study by BMJ. And while PPE has always been a vital tool in protecting the safety of front line and healthcare workers, PPE – including masks, hand sanitizer, gloves and face shields – have now become a vital garment for the day to day life of the average citizen; resulting in the fact that countries must have an adequate supply of PPE in place to safely reopen the economy. Local examples outside of the medical field include the outbreaks that occurred amongst migrant workers in agricultural settings. More than a dozen migrant workers at a St. Catharines greenhouse sickened by the COVID-19 were found to not have been using PPE while working or while living in close quarters during the outbreak. Niagara’s acting

Medical Officer of Health Dr. Mustafa Hirji said the lack of PPE could be what contributed to the spread of the virus. “…The reality is that you don’t know what the interactions (between workers) is like,” said Hirji to a local paper in regards to the outbreak. “Given [this] outbreak, we are recommending their employees now use PPE.” These outbreaks are examples of how quickly infection can spread in a public setting without proper equipment. In the wake of the shortages, many local manufacturers began to retool their factories and businesses in order to produce the needed equipment; making masks a common item now found in local stores. Vicki McKenna, a Registered Nurse and provincial president with the Ontario Nurses’ Association, says the issue of PPE is “certainly a concern. “Everyone wants [PPE], we want it,” said McKenna to a local paper. “There are situations where we know it hasn’t been there when they’ve needed it and those are ongoing issues that we’re dealing with and it’s front and centre for us every day.”

REVEAL NIAGARA BUSINESS MAGAZINE

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To Our Current Day

Guardians & Protectors Thank you to all healthcare workers, first responders, grocery store staff, farmers and food producers, gas station attendants, postal employees, delivery drivers, auto mechanics, waste collection services, construction workers, logistical specialists, and so many more. Each essential service provider is taking great personal risk to defend, protect, and keep our city moving forward.

Thank you for truly saving lives.

from all of us


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RE-OPEN READINESS & REDUCING RISK Announcements arrive to our inboxes daily surrounded plans for various phases of reopening, and industries and organizations alike are seeking answers to some very big questions about how to do so safely, securely, and efficiently. Who is leading the charge, what precautions must be taken, and how are the new policies and procedures being organized and implemented? These are questions that require not only time sensitive answers, but solutions that can be implemented quickly without compromising their effectiveness or unnecessarily driving excessive cost. With recent announcements about what changes are beginning to take place from globally recognized brands like Amazon, Facebook, and Air Canada, it has become clear that businesses of all size and scope need to make quick changes on the frontline. These changes are needed to provide peace of mind to employees, consumers, and the public, but they also need to be effective in combating the potential spread of disease if we truly plan to begin to restore economic strength and prosperity. Beyond the physical distancing guidelines, there is an obvious surge of interest in the use of thermal screening, for example. Some have been bold enough to claim these measures may be an unnecessary reaction to our current situation, however, there are multiple sides to this that must be considered. Take for example the recent employee walkout at Amazon – where workers came together demanding better protection against COVID-19 and potential outbreaks. Workers want and need to feel safer returning to work, to know that their workplace practices will include certain preventative measures designed to protect them, and their families. Customers want and need to feel safer within business establishments and congregations, to be confident that they are protected from those around them. Businesses and employers have duties to be as proactive as possible when considering how best to approach safety, protective and preventative measures and protocols that make the most sense for their businesses, because workers and customers will demand it. ►►► ADVERTORIAL REVEAL NIAGARA BUSINESS MAGAZINE

| VOL. 1 | ISSUE 3


FACTS: The Ontario Government has released a guide/protocol document to help prepare employers put controls into place, making workplaces safer for everyone: TO MINIMIZE THE RISK OF PASSING ON NOVEL CORONAVIRUS 2019 (COVID-19) AT WORK, EMPLOYERS SHOULD: ► Screen workers ⌐ Support people with symptoms to self-isolate ► Ensure people maintain a physical distance of 2 metres or more ► Disinfect surfaces and objects ► Support hand hygiene, particularly handwashing ► Remind workers about good cough and sneeze etiquette and to avoid touching their face ► Work with the local public health unit if any workers have COVID-19 or are exposed to someone with COVID-19

To download the COVID-19 safety plan template, click HERE. For more information, visit ontario.ca

Of course, no single solution on its own is fool proof, but the culmination of these preventive measures in conjunction with policy change is what will reduce risk and increase confidence amongst people. Technology provides us with limitless opportunity to redefine our physical and digital environments, and to ensure that each business deploys solutions specific to their unique needs. THERMAL SCREENING CAMERAS With respect to thermal screening technology, it is important to understand how detecting skin-surface temperatures can benefit infection control in your organization, but also understanding which application makes the most sense for your business. Without the right information, you can easily find yourself installing equipment with a very hefty price tag designed for high traffic entranceways, only to find out down the line that a single entry point system would have delivered what you need at a much lower cost.

CONTACTLESS INTELLIGENCE Prior to COVID-19, several businesses had placed large investment to deploy touch-screen technology to enhance service delivery and lower costs related to staffing. These devices will now require additional cost to avoid the spread of infection as it relates to hand and respiratory hygiene. Gesture recognition technology has reshaped how people can interact with these devices, moving beyond touch screens and allowing any person to interact with a device by interpreting human gestures and movements, such as movement of hands, fingers, arms, head, or the entire body. The conversion technologies that BRRiJ has developed are suitable for most interactive (touch) screen displays, allowing contactless, gesture-based interaction limiting the potential for infection transfer on hightouch surfaces. In addition to the solutions that apply directly to reducing risk through temperature screening and converting high-touch surfaces


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to intuitive, contactless devices, there are other key areas to review and consider for long-term sustainability. PHYSICAL DISTANCING As businesses continue to re-open, it is expected that a large percentage of the labour force supporting physical distancing Work from Home models will continue operating as such. As businesses define their new percentage allocations of onsite work vs remote work, we cannot forget the safety and security considerations that impact the remote portion. Having the right hardware and software systems are critical to not only keep operations moving but also to keep information protected and cyber-secured. SAFETY INFORMATION The delivery of information is also changing,

and the merge of our physical and digital worlds will become more prominent as the need to strengthening employees, clients, and customers safety communication continues to rise. The installation and use of interactive visual devices, such as powerful LED display screens, is incredibly energy efficient, highly customizable, and cost-effective solutions. LED Displays are not only used for store signage, product displays, high-impact events, or revenue generation but also used as sophisticated tools for safety and risk mitigation communication within workplace and business environment. This is a very critical time, and enlisting the expertise of solution provider like BRRiJ can assist in learning what solutions are available, what options are best for you, and how those options need to be implemented to meet your short term and long term needs.

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If you, like many other businesses, are seeking a better understanding of what solutions are appropriate for you, we welcome a no obligation consult with a member of our expert team. ABOUT BRRiJ Solutions Inc. offers a suite of advanced technical solutions applicable to today’s complex world. We are on a mission to transform how businesses deploy the necessary measures designed to promote the safety and well-being of all. We lend our expertise through every step of the process, being a true all-in-one solution provider. Visit our website for more information on re-opening of businesses by province or territory. BRRiJ.com

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NI A GA R A T O U RI S M U P FOR

THE CHALLENGE The tourism industry is a robust and dominant economic engine, not only globally, but right here in Niagara. We are a strong contributor to the Travel and Tourism GDP performance for Ontario and Canada. There is no denying that tourism generates foreign exchange, regional development, job and career growth and local community strength.

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AMIDST OUR CURRENT CRISIS, THERE ARE HEAVY HEARTS AS IT FEELS AS THOUGH THIS INDUSTRY IS AT A STAND STILL, BUT THE DESIRE TO REBUILD WHILE PROTECTING ONE ANOTHER REMAINS STRONG. As a result of our economic footprint and our strong ability to attract and rebuild travel and tourism, our community must stand strong and support this industry through their recovery efforts alongside holding the government accountable to providing appropriate relief and incentives where necessary.

“Niagara Falls has always been the place for fun! With our innovative SafeToPlay.ca program, our operators have gone above and beyond to make sure that Niagara Falls is SAFE to have fun! See you soon!”

There is a call for collaboration between the public and private sectors to stand united, adopting a global approach to the crisis. Industry leaders share a common goal to restore the strength of the industry as well as rebuild the confidence of travellers and those who work and support the industry.

- Jim Diodati, Mayor, City of Niagara Falls.

The landscape presents a number of challenges, in speaking with industry leaders here in Niagara. Everyone is fully focused on the safety of all, which leads each decision and policy change. The World Travel and Tourism Council has been lobbying for and releasing global health and safety protocols that are designed to provide assurances to travellers that when restrictions begin lifting, they can feel safe to travel again. The public campaign, which promotes resources and messaging around global safety protocols is titled Safe Travels. In addition to the Safe Travels program, industry associations and independent businesses are all working to implement protocols to address the challenges being presented to hospitality, retail, aviation, cruise, and tour operators alike. There is a comprehensive focus on improved hygiene standards that deliver world-class cleanliness. For hospitality, and an example, the changes begin from the point

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of check in. Leveraging touchless digital technology where possible, new policies deployed to increase the use of sanitization at frequent points of contact such as luggage transfers and storage, stairwell, and elevator access points. Amenities like business centers and fitness rooms have been restructured to allow for physical distancing, and restaurant practices have been completely redesigned

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from the kitchen maintenance protocols to the physical configuration of bar areas and seating. Niagara’s travel and tourism footprint runs a long and resilient history, and this too shall pass. It is clear that there’s an incredible support from our community and leaders, so when we asked a question, is Niagara Falls up for the challenge?


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“Without exception, Niagara Falls is one of the major tourism attractions not only in Canada but around the world. Everyone recognizes the name. When it is safe to do so, we will be at the forefront for those looking to visit Niagara. We have everything here; first class hotels and attractions. The beauty of the parks and recreation areas are second to none. We will recover strongly and be very busy as restrictions are lifted,” said Wayne Thomson, sitting Councillor and Former Mayor of the City of Niagara Falls. “Niagara Falls has always been the place for fun! With our innovative SafeToPlay. ca program, our operators have gone above and beyond to make sure that Niagara Falls is SAFE to have fun! See you soon!” - Jim Diodati, Mayor, City of Niagara Falls. With the iconic and wondrous Niagara Falls as our anchor, Niagara region will forever be a world-class destination that leads with safety and security in mind. We are truly in this together, and our future is very bright.

ONTARIO FACTS:

In Ontario, there are 188,000 businesses, 391,000 employees 141 million visitors each year, $34.1 Billion in Tourism Receipts $26.8 Billion in Visitors Spending. $32.7 Billion to Provincial GDP Reference: Tourism Industry Association of Ontario (2018 Data)

A FRAMEWORK FOR RE-OPENING OUR PROVINCE

Our province’s reopening is being guided by a framework that outlines the principles to reopen businesses, services and public spaces to responsibly lead Ontario’s economy back to a strong position. ►►►

READ THE FRAMEWORK

Read more about the LEADING GLOBAL PROTOCOLS FOR THE NEW NORMAL in Hospitality. REVEAL NIAGARA BUSINESS MAGAZINE

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TAKE THIS OPPORTUNITY TO

Invest in Your People NOW MORE THAN EVER by Erin King

The emergence of Covid-19 has forever changed the workplace. With so many working from home, the line between personal and professional can be complicated, while workers who interact with the public encounter a new layer of tension in an already stressful situation. Because of this, many are facing burnout at higher rates.

This post COVID environment can mean juggling childcare, extended work hours, or the feeling that you never really shut down and unplug. In the public sector, stressors from exposure to an anxious public, and the constant threat of illness can make an already demanding job feel unmanageable. In May 2019, The World Health Organization defined burn out as: “A syndrome conceptualized as resulting from chronic workplace stress that has not been successfully managed.” When people become burned out, they often look for ways to leave their job. The cost of replacing employees is considerable. It can be anywhere from 16% of their annual salary for low-paying high-turnover jobs (under $30,000 per year) to 6 to 9 months salary for mid-range positions up to 213% for high paid executives according to a CAP study published in 2012. The costs include advertising, recruiting, training, and lost productivity. When people stay in a job that they are unsatisfied with and burned out from, productivity, quality, and career motivation are also affected. When viewed in this context, it’s in a company’s best interest now more than ever to invest in their workforce. According to Aaron Tisdelle, President, Girotti Machine, “as the baby boomer generation begins to retire we see gaps in the workforce that will impact our regional, provincial and federal economic output. These gaps are most prevalent in the skilled trades. While most parents and

guidance counselors encourage our young people to head to college or university they are missing a great opportunity to get a jump start on life by working in the trades. This young person will begin to earn money as opposed to spend money educating themselves and learning the trade. Employers pay our young people to develop their skills and further their knowledge. Perhaps the most telling and biggest testimony for the trades is the current pandemic and the economic strife and uncertainty it has brought with it to many careers and households. While most industries were locked down and shut down, our trades people worked through it all. They were able to maintain their current living standards as most trades oriented industries were deemed Essential Services and were allowed to continue working. Trades people are essential to our future, they to continue to build the infrastructure and machines that run our world.” It remains, without question, that regardless of your industry or profession you absolutely must invest in your people at all levels. This includes an investment of skills during their time with your organization, leading to a greater sense of value and purpose which has benefits tied to less burnout and lower attrition. As Aaron mentions, involving the younger generation and taking the time to nurture their interests and unique skillsets is also critical and this advice applies greatly to skilled trades but also beyond to other professions. People will always be our single greatest asset worthy of investment.

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► INVEST IN PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT.

HERE ARE SOME WAYS TO INVEST IN OUR EMPLOYEES TO KEEP THEM

Happy &

Engaged:

It shows that by putting the investment back into your people, they’re important, keeping them at the forefront of your industry and giving them an edge for success. ► CREATE ADVANCEMENT OPPORTUNITIES. In a survey from the 2020 Engagement and Retention Report from Achievers, 54% of employees said career advancement was more important than salary, 34% said promotion opportunities would increase their loyalty, and 22% that have no advancement opportunities are looking elsewhere for employment. ► INVEST IN BETTER BENEFITS AND PERKS. Ensure that your employees have everything they need to stay physically and mentally healthy and provide them with a few nice extras. According to Blake Morgan of Forbes Magazine, “Companies that invest in employee experience are four times more profitable than those that don’t.” ► FOSTER A HEALTHY WITH OPEN COMMUNICATION ENVIRONMENT. Nearly 30 years of research confirms that properly executed mentorships can be great for business affecting everything from career outcomes to retention and engagement.

Marketplaces are changing fast, and everyone is working on getting a footing in this brave new world of business. But one thing that never changes is the idea that if you invest in your employees first, your customers will benefit, and business will grow.

“The difference between a good employer and a great

employer, is the extent to which they are willing to invest in their most integral and valuable assets: their employees. There is no better investment a business could make and the rate of return is enormous!” – Julia Sebastian, Chief Executive Officer, HR OffSite

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THE NEXT

EVOLUTION OF OFFICE SPACE Are you ready to change the way you work? It wasn’t all that long ago when office environments started shifting to shared workspaces, hot desks and a more open and fluid floor plan. Ideas of increased communication and collaboration, transparent company culture and more freedom in the workplace were all part of the plan. As a result of COVID-19, we saw many businesses temporarily shutting down or shifting to immediate remote-work solutions, and it’s fair to say that workplaces will never be the same again. A clear shift away from open floor plans, shared seating and crowded boardrooms is taking place. Which begs the question, once the dust settles what should the traditional office now look like?

Some companies, including the likes of Facebook, Microsoft and Shopify have all publicly stated that their employees can continue to work remotely if they choose, and that ties to physical office spaces will continue to reduce over time. Others have expressed a new appreciation for their office environments after experiencing less than ideal home office configurations and family distractions. For those that require or prefer to maintain a physical office environment, even if only part-time, many structural changes have already been set in place.

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We repurposed offices and moved several staff to new rooms – ensuring that everyone has their own space.” - Jessica Friesen, CEO, Gales Gas Bar

Say goodbye to communal snack stations or staff kitchens and say hello to a very frequent cleaning schedule, sanitizing everything from printers and meeting tables, to microwaves and workstations between users.

Entrance ways are being outfitted with thermal screening solutions for the purpose of preventative infection control, reception areas are now home to plexi-glass barriers and waiting areas are spread out to maintain physical distancing requirements. Office buildings with elevators may experience line-ups as a reduced number of people can now enter.

Inside the office, we are seeing more dedicated work areas and zones, and increased barriers or enclosures to workstations.

one instance where having more than one staff in a one room is unavoidable – in that instance we ensure that there is more than 6’ of distance AND that the staff members are comfortable with what has been done to protect them. We also developed policies/ procedures and provided the proper materials needed to protect them when physical distancing was not possible. Strict

Speaking with Jessica Friesen from Gales Gas Bars, their corporate office space was rearranged to ensure physical distancing could easily be maintained, including moving several team members to private offices and restructuring their boardroom spaces.

COVID-19 has forced businesses to make a vast number of changes to processes, both internal and external, and to how the business is situated. The most obvious changes for us at Gales is at our frontline. However, the more challenging changes actually took place within our office space. Our head office is located in an older building, and posed considerable challenges to ensuring staff safety. We had to take a good, hard look at what we could do. We repurposed offices and moved several staff to new rooms – ensuring that everyone has their own space. We now have only

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adherence to these policies is maintained. Moving forward, these changes are permanent, and we needed to further consider possible psychological repercussions of staff that had previously worked as a team in the same room, and are now suddenly segregated. The personal connection is important! We encourage social time during lunch, and have purchased an additional picnic table for office staff to get outside and enjoy some sunshine together. When outdoor lunches are not possible, our boardroom has enough room to adhere to social distancing

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requirements while allowing the group to socialize. As we continue to navigate through the new normal we will continue to make changes if/when required.” says Jessica Friesen, CEO Gales Gas Bar.

The opportunity to enhance workplaces with technology to allow entirely touchless experiences will also become more accelerated, with increased interest in voice activation or gesture based commands to complete tasks like opening doors, riding elevators and using printers. Each company will proceed differently based upon the needs and requirements of the business, Those that are able to continue to work remotely will do so, investing in proper gear like standing workstations and private workspaces away from family and distractions. For those with access to a physical office, it seems like a hybrid work week will be most common, allowing for staggered start times and a weekly mix of remote and office work.

There is one thing we hope will become consistent and expected, and that is to stay home when feeling under the weather. It is no longer acceptable to tough it out and head into work, and if you think you want to give it a try, be prepared to be sent packing.


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tips to market yourself... BACK TO WORK

Life has gotten trickier in this post COVID world, with millions of Canadians out of work and seeking new opportunities as markets slowly reopen. Whether you find yourself wanting to return to a similar placement, or openly looking for a completely new trade or even industry, the competition will be fierce.

In a COVID-19 environment it is important to stay current with the most updated health regulations to make sure you know what sectors are opening up next in your area and of course for you to stay safe in your new work environment. Applying for work and working is safe to do right now but knowing how to apply and interview remotely will be crucial for you to land a new job as HR practices have changed in Ontario. Be sure to keep positive even though our economy and job market has shifted dramatically. Be optimistic as there is a new opportunity that has come from COVID-19 that could be the opportunity you have always wanted.” – Kelly Jones, Program Coordinator, Employment Solutions To begin the process, you will need to get in tune with your strengths. You want to be as prepared as possible to clearly outline how you can add value to the organization in this next role. Identify the skills you have to offer and focus on those skills that you love to put to use.

1. ARTICULATE YOUR SKILLS: Once you’ve reflected on those skills you have, understand how to itemize them and highlight what’s most transferable, such as project management, leadership or sales experience. Since we are heavily reliant on our digital tools today, you need to shine online. Spend extra time updating your LinkedIn profile. Ensure that your social media profiles are ready for viewing and show what you are comfortable with publicly sharing. 2. HAVE A RELEVANT RESUME: Organize by qualities and skillsets, to ensure

your resume speaks to more than just one specific job title or industry. If you’re looking for a job in customer service, but don’t have any paid work in the field, think instead of the skills required for that particular role and where you’ve acquired them. The purpose of the resume is to land an interview, and you will be provided the opportunity to expand at that time.

3. NETWORK: It may be awhile before you can get out to the traditional networking events, so put in some elbow grease online. Now that LinkedIn is polished up, be sure to connect with your professional network and past colleagues. Reach out to previous employers or supervisors and ask if they can provide you with digital recommendations on LinkedIn. Join groups related to your skills and industry of interest, and engage in the conversation online to add value and offer insights where possible. Ask people in your existing network if they wouldn’t mind making appropriate connections. 4.

PREPARE FOR THE INTERVIEW: People are not only looking for a skilled workforce, but for people who are passionate, willing to learn and prepared. Do your homework and review the company, paying special attention to what the focus is today compared to previous. Showing that you understand their journey through this crisis will help you clearly identify your best asset to bring to the table, but will also be greatly appreciated from the other side of the table.

5.

BE TRANSPARENT: Do not be afraid to be honest, and share your true intentions for your future. It may have been difficult in the past to articulate why you may want to switch careers, but in today’s circumstance your full transparency will not only be refreshing, but respectable and well received.

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WE MAKE SENSE OF




pivot WHAT WORKS AND WHAT MAY NOT ANYMORE . . . As each day and week progresses, we shift further into what is being referred to as the ‘new normal’. While no one could have predicted this, there are businesses working tirelessly to pivot and strategize what the future of their business looks like for the consumer and the environment. The most successful businesses will be those that recognize the plans they are putting in place will not only be to survive these tougher times but are future-facing strategies that add value long-term. CROWD-FRIENDLY ENVIRONMENTS From movie theatres to restaurants and gyms, businesses that welcome gathering crowds have been forced to close their publicly accessible locations, all the while seeking alternatives that will allow them remain viable after the pandemic. When permitted to re-open, these businesses may find that not everyone is comfortable jumping into their old routines, and limitedcontact options need to be considered heavily. Restaurants will need to adjust their blueprints to offer far more spacious seating. Movie theatres will have to begin blocking off physical seating between groups while considering a more innovative approach to creating experiences that cannot be replicated in living rooms through streaming services. Many gyms and fitness centres have been offering free digital workouts to keep members engaged during their closure, and now need to consider how to maintain those memberships for people not ready to go back once re-opened.

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MEDICAL PRACTITIONERS & HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS From chiropractors to radiology centres, and more than a dozen sub-industries that have not been directly on the front lines supporting the virus will have to handle a lot of fallout. As people begin to feel safer, there will be a surge of those seeking treatment for routine care, long-term issues, or ailments they had put on hold to deal with down the road. “Chiropractic care is a personal and hands on profession requiring trust; which is one of the reasons I became a chiropractor. The coronavirus has inhibited my ability to gain trust with new patients due to PPE and takes out some of the personal aspect of the treatment. I greet every patient with a handshake and a smile, but because of new regulations a lot of the personalized touch is lost.” Dr. Richard McFadden, from McFadden Chiropractic and Massage Niagara. The personal approach is being impacted by many practitioners but everyone is focusing on the safety and protection of all... Rethinking the flow of staff and patients throughout the office, such as segregating entrances and exits and keeping all doors locked between the transfer of patients. Waiting rooms have become a thing of the past and a variety of appointment arrival procedures are being reviewed. In-person procedures will undergo more in-depth pre-screening on the phone, and patient safety has taken on an entirely new meaning because it includes everything that occurs from the time the patient leaves their home, to arriving in the office, to returning back

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home again. We will be seeing fewer people in smaller places, meaning a likelihood of increased hours of operation to serve the demands. CLEANING SERVICES All services related to cleaning and disinfecting have taken on a completely new dependency. The distinction between cleaning and disinfecting is critical, as cleaning previously referred to the removal of dirt, grime, and debris and not always the very distinct removal of viruses and bacteria. On a positive note, the novel coronavirus is relatively easy to remove from surfaces by using soap and water and standard disinfectants. Commercial cleaning services have adjusted by introducing new guidelines designed to protect both clients and employees, including how employees handle their clothing and footwear at the end of day by changing in isolation and scrubbing prior to entering their home. The return for residential cleaning will also require additional adjustments. For some companies, they are considering asking residents to vacate the home prior to a cleaning service entering, which can be difficult with most of the family working or doing schooling at home but is a major safety protocol. Additionally, residential cleaners that used to work at multiple properties a day and will see those practices change to only one property to ensure the safety of the clients and employees.


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RE SILIE NCE

INFORMATION YOU CAN CUSTOMIZE TO STRENGTHEN YOUR BUSINESS DURING AND AFTER THIS HEALTH CRISIS

FIND OUT IF YOU QUALIFY GOVERNMENT RESOURCES

CANADA’S COVID-19 ECONOMIC RESPONSE PLAN The Government of Canada is taking immediate, significant and decisive action to support Canadians and businesses facing hardship as a result of the global COVID-19 outbreak.

▀ PRODUCTS & SERVICES

MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS

Support for Individuals. Find out more here.

▀ MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS ▀ HUMAN RESOURCES

Support for Industry Sectors. Find out more here.

▀ GOVERNMENT & CORPORATE RELATIONS ▀ OPERATION & FINANCE

now is the time

take ▀______ ▀______ ▀______ ▀______ ▀______

action

AREAS OF FOCUS

OPERATION & FINANCE Rethinking or increasing the focus on safety measures for employees and consumers with compliant operation reconfigurations being the necessity will stike a new balance between physical versus virtual workflow. Review and understand your current supply, demand, production, and assets for any uncertainty and be prepared to measure, protect, & improve your current liquidity.

Your areas of focus as it applies to your overall business goals

PRODUCTS & SERVICES The global impact of COVID-19 has placed restrictions affecting all aspects of product and service delivery, from relevance and demand to disrupted supply chains. Seize this opportunity to improving what you offer along with diversifying your protocols relating to acquisition of goods and distribution of products, inclusive of local/domestic supports that are readily available. MARKETING & COMMUNICATIONS Assess your brand messaging and make the necessary changes/updates to your current communications to meet the safety expectations of your consumers. By increasing your participation with your local community/industry crisis response/recovery plan and leveraging online mediums to share your bright outlook with the captive audience during this critical time, you can have both short-term and long-term benefits that can positively impact your brand and your overall business performance.

Support for Businesses. Find out more here.

GOVERNMENT & CORPORATE RELATIONS Be prepared to align your safety compliance with evolving government official orders and understand the criteria and qualifications to access available government assistance and financial resources at both provincial and federal levels. Leverage applicable funding, relief, or deferral programs to create the appropriate recovery strategies and mitigate the strain on your production and labour operations. HUMAN RESOURCES Strengthen your workforce by allocating proper investments into online learning and digital skill development as it applies to navigating a more virtually productive environment. Consider your investments on implementing digital/online tools that are designed to merge the physical and digital aspects of your future work environment.

As originally published on Niagara Falls Navigator, May 2020

Are you a business that can supply products and services in support of Canada’s response to COVID-19? Canada wants to hear from you. Find out more here.

Top

5 Helpful Tips

for businesses operating from homes

1 Have a Dedicated Workspace helps to keep focused 2Make a Schedule helps with productive routine 3 Take Breaks helps to keep your mind sharp

4Get Dressed

helps with business mindset

5More Communication

helps to be mindful of time If you have tips you’d like to share that works for you, send it via email at:

nfnavigator@owneramedia.com

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Liquidity THE REAL RESILIENCE CAPACITY by: Mauricio Zuluaga, Trinity Capital International One of Warren Buffett’s most popular quotes claims: “It’s only when the tide goes out that you learn who’s been swimming naked”. Today, when the world is facing a storm as a consequence of the COVID-19 pandemic disruption, most businesses, no matter their size, are struggling to navigate the crisis. The social and economic effects currently taking place are just comparable with the Great Depression that started in 1929 and lasted until the late 1930s. This time, however, everything is happening faster. In a matter of days, the global economy fell into recession, as a consequence of the lockdowns and the social distancing regulations adopted to avoid the virus spreading. COVID-19 has rapidly transformed consumption habits which took years to be created. The new reality is testing the business adaptation capabilities and their future may depend on how resilient they are. Traditionally, resilience has been defined as “the ability to recover quickly after something unpleasant”. Today, its meaning may be summarized in one single word: liquidity. It is the business’s ability to meet their regular obligations that lets them see the future with confidence. The lack of liquidity is a common issue among small and medium-sized

companies and according to recent studies published by Bloomberg, most of them had just enough cash flow for up to two months. This situation becomes a national concern when analyzing the role played by small businesses in the economy and labor market. In Canada, as it happens in most countries, the biggest job generators are micro, small, and medium enterprises. According to official data, the Canadian economy totaled 1.18 million employer businesses. Of these, 97.9% were small businesses. For a large number of them, current access to liquidity depends on external sources, such as tax rate reductions, credits, or government subsidies or grants. Access to cash ultimately depends on business operations and management, rather than on third parties. Small and mediumsized businesses, start-ups included, should work on their own liquidity risk management. This is the best way to help small businesses to navigate through COVID-19 and get ready for the post-pandemic world. Now is the time for action, not simply for reflection. The current situation is the perfect opportunity to start working on managing liquidity and increase business resilience.

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FIVE STEPS TO LEAD THE SMALL AND MEDIUM BUSINESSES’ ECOSYSTEM: I. BUILD SAVINGS There is no liquidity without having a saving culture. Crisis management plans are based on prevention, and savings are the best protection that a business can get. By improving companies’ money management skills, and changing daily spending habits, organizations can make a big difference. Small daily expenditures are usually underestimated, but when looking at them as a total, they have a huge impact. Some studies have revealed that those expenses can explain up to 20% of the offices and companies’ expenses. By creating a spending discipline culture and reserving a percentage, at least 10% of the monthly net income, small and mediumsize businesses can create future liquidity to bypass difficulties. To conclude, the key point to guarantee future cash access is to adopt a savings strategy. II. LONG TERM STRATEGY Before the pandemic, a usual business plan for a small and medium-size organization used to cover the short horizon. An outlook of two months used to be the average. Today, it is important to start thinking of more long-term planning, and double the length of time that a company expects to navigate with no income. 54

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III. LIQUID ASSETS The conservation of liquid assets, those that can be transformed into cash rapidly, to serve as a cushion in case of a possible shortfall is more important than ever. Payables and promissory notes, tax refunds, among others, are useful instruments when the urgency for cash comes. IV. EMERGENCY LINE OF CREDIT Access to credit is a fast and good way to get liquidity and face challenging times. It is important to build a strong reputation to be able to get loans easily, based on good records. At this point, the recommendation for small businesses is to start creating that reputation into the banking system, even if that means to start with a low amount of loans that are paid back quickly. That is just the beginning, but in the future, an emergency line of credit can save a business. V. GRANT INNOVATION The business ecosystem has a large offer of grants. Every year, local governments and private organizations seek to recognize and grant with a monetary incentive small and medium-size businesses that are impacting the

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Niagara Region and the Canadian entrepreneur ecosystem positively. Those grants can make the difference and help entrepreneurs to find a new source of cash. The primary role of liquidity-risk management is to prospectively assess the need for funds needed to meet obligations and ensure the availability of cash under normal and stressed conditions. Crises are not opportunities per se, but the way we deal with them may open great possibilities. After COVID19, disruption, countries, organizations, and families are struggling to carry on. However, this situation has brought us a unique opportunity for reinvention, a very fashionable word these days. Beyond new business ideas, a new way to forecast the company’s performance may include a new pandemic outbreak as a potential risk, and there is not a better vaccine in the business world than liquidity.


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WHAT DOES BUSINESS LOOK LIKE FOR THOSE A focus must be placed on implementation of structural changes that will transform society in a way that would positively impact deeper issues as they relate to job training, education, and beyond.

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A crisis has the tendency to reveal existing challenges in one’s economy, and our current exposure to the coronavirus is no different. Not only has this been a frightening reminder of our own mortality, but also rapidly unmasking the vulnerabilities that existed.

Our recovery period will not be based solely upon how the government presses forward, but also greatly depends on how the business community in Niagara responds and how our localized community directly supports the businesses of Niagara.

Compared to a time when the economy was based on local agriculture and crafts, more agile to bounce back and restore economic strength, the impact of COVID-19 falls to a more complex economy that plays host to a more fragile, geopolitical order. The potential remains that we may see the deepest recession in living memory, but the true path forward lies directly in the backyard of our local communities. This is a time to come together, to reflect on our values as a society and assess our weaknesses so that we can rebuild stronger than before.

Many of our manufacturers have continued to operate through the pandemic as a result of their products being considered essential, such as Innio, operating out of Welland. The parts and services provided by this facility impact natural gas and power generation services worldwide. Most of the manufacturing companies have adjusted in any capacity possible to ensure the safety and wellbeing of their workforce. Providing alternating shifts, adjusting building configuration, and redirecting as many departments to work remotely as possible, are just some of the changes that allow the continued production of goods and services that keep the economy pushing forward.

Businesses across Niagara are experiencing something that even the best disaster recovery plans could not have been prepared for. Many disruptions that business prepare for are often localized, impacting a specific geography, facility, or third-party entity. A pandemicrelated disruption is more systemic, impacting everyone including workforce, customers, suppliers, and competitors.

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Those in the wine industry are also adjusting, as the heart of the industry lies with small retail shops family farms and local restaurants that supply a major portion of our famous Niagara wines. According to Wine Growers Canada, the Canadian wine industry has a total economic


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WHOSE MARKETS ARE OUTSIDE OF NIAGARA? impact of $9 billion and winery tourism brings in $1.5 billion annually to Canada’s economy. With a reduction in travel and less visitors purchasing these wines, many wineries are offering free shipping, contactless curbside pick-up and where possible, increasing what is provided directly through the LCBO.

need to support the local economy by helping their neighbours, being more aware of what is taking place in their community and seeking out opportunity to offer helps, and of course by increasing their household acquisition of local goods and services whenever possible.

Although a crisis rapidly exposes our weaknesses, it also has the power to show us just how quickly drastic changes can come about in an incredibly short period of time. A focus must be placed on implementation of structural changes that will transform society in a way that would positively impact deeper issues as they relate to job training, education, and beyond.

REDUCTION OF EXTERNAL RELIANCE

ADOPT A COMMUNITY DRIVEN MINDSET Applied at an internal and external level, being community-minded needs to be a top priority. Workplaces must address the immediate and future needs of their workforce, deploying the safety measures needed to regain confidence ensuring the reliability of their workforce. Members of the community

Each business needs to review how much of their operation relies on external factors, both from a consumer perspective as well as a product and supply perspective. Depending upon the size of your business this could be a process that spans your entire supply chain, product development, location decisions, and manufacturing models. Companies with national workforce may consider localising satellite offices in various hubs across Canada, whereas companies with a local Niagara footprint might consider increasing the percentage of goods and services that they acquire from local vs international sources.

EMBRACE TECHNOLOGY AND REMOTE WORK The reliance on digital tools has possibly been one of the fastest adjustments to take place as a result of the virus. With companies being forced to take the leap, allowing remote work, and investing in technology that they have explored but not yet committed to. These transitions that were explored out of necessity will also be some of the best investments made as it relates to restoring the strength of your business, by lowering traditional overhead as it relates to office space as just one example. Through these past few months, the pandemic has truly reminded us of what is important, which coincide with what the pillars of our economy should be rebuilt upon. By localising our efforts to focus on health, safety and providing for one another, we can use this crisis for the good, and finally, get it right.

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INVEST or L IVE HERE by Erin King

THEY SAY YOU CANNOT HAVE IT ALL, BUT IF YOU LIVE IN THE NIAGARA REGION, YOU MIGHT JUST BELIEVE YOU CAN. Located just south of Toronto and west of Buffalo, NY, the Niagara region has something for everyone. From scenic country vistas and pristine waterfront to world-class entertainment, higher education, and glamourous casinos, it has it all. For the just under 450,000 people who call Niagara home, they would not have it any other way. Nestled under the Niagara escarpment, uniquely situated between Lakes Ontario and Erie, the region boasts a series of complex microclimates created by the ancient rock beds that make up the region. Fertile grape-growing soil was formed by marine sediments deposited when the area was covered by a shallow sea over 500 million years ago. All of

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View from Niagara Falls & the Niagara River

these contribute to the unique flavor and character of the region. Niagara is made up of 12 municipalities, each one distinctly different. Whether you’re looking for a big city atmosphere or a quaint country lifestyle, between Grimsby and Fort Erie, you’re bound to find it. As an example, Niagara Falls prides itself on offering big-city living with hometown comforts. Packed with metropolitan amenities accessible from the comfort of your own backyard, you will never have to go far. With the average house price at about $439,000, getting on the property ladder is an achievable goal. Compared to our next closest region, Hamilton Wentworth, where the average house price is $544,980, Niagara offers real value. In Niagara Falls alone, there are over 37,000 residential households with an rising demand being matched by ongoing developments year after year.** “Niagara Region is known for a friendly atmosphere, mild climate, great quality

of life and welcoming Southern Ontario community, it’s no wonder people are moving to Niagara. The region has people visiting from all over the world and is still affordable for buyers to purchase a home with some detached homes selling for under $400,000.” – Jonas Martin, Broker, Realty Network : 100 Inc. Brokerage. Niagara is also one of the safest places in Canada. According to its annual Uniform Crime Reporting Survey, Statistics Canada gave St. Catharines, the third-best rating in Canada for violent crime. The study cited area resources and a sense of community as additional factors contributing to the overall wellbeing of residents. Niagara is also a remarkably safe place to live in terms of natural disasters, according to the Stats Canada Fact Sheet, power outages from ice or windstorms are the most common types of emergencies in the area. After an emergency, almost 95% of residents reported being able to resume routine life within a week, with over half getting back on track within one to two days. Factors contributing to this resilience were a strong sense of belonging, self-sufficiency, neighborhood trust, and civic engagement. The employment landscape of Niagara is strong, with a total of 220,385 jobs reported in 2019 with the top 5 sectors by employment being accommodation and food services, retail trade, healthcare and social assistance, manufacturing, and construction*. Regardless of profession, Niagara is brimming with promise within an industry or trade that satisfies your employment needs. Entrepreneurial opportunities are endless, with access to a variety of services and resources for existing businesses and start-ups. When raising your family, you do not have to look beyond our borders for higher education with Brock University and Niagara College close by. Brock University is the only school in Canada and internationally to offer the MICA (Mathematics Integrated with Computing and Applications) program.

View from Lake Ontario Shoreline

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Brock’s Department of Health Sciences boasts the only undergraduate degree in Public Health in Canada. World-class infrastructure investments include the Cairns Family Health and Bioscience Research Complex and the Marilyn I. Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts. Niagara College is home to More than 130 diploma, degree, and advancedlevel programs, as well as more than 600 credit, vocational, and general interest part-time courses. Niagara College also offers world-renowned wine, beer, and culinary programs. Niagara is host to many excellent recreational facilities, including the St Catharines aquatic center, a modern building with two state of the art pools. The Walker YMCA in St. Catharines and the McBain branch in Niagara Falls are bright modern facilities with contemporary gyms, a variety of classes, and clean, modern pools. If you are looking for something to do, Niagara has diverse recreational and cultural opportunities. The amateur sommelier can travel wine country without ever having to get on a plane and tour the more than one hundred wineries. You can use NiagaraWineryGuide.com. to make your itinerary. If the theatre is more your style, Shaw Festival, located in the heart of picturesque Niagara-onthe-Lake, offers world-class theatre with 60

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small-town intimacy. The performing arts center in downtown St. Catharines plays host to world-class rock shows, comedy acts, theatre, and dance. Located inside the center is the film house for film buffs who want to stray off the beaten path. If you’re looking for nightlife, the casinos of Niagara Falls might be more your speed. Outdoor opportunities are both family and community friendly, such as Happy Rolphs or Safari Niagara. History, arts and culture are also available to enjoy outdoors by exploring many pieces of public art or visiting Queenston Heights, the location of one of the most critical battles of the war of 1812, nestled high atop the Niagara Escarpment. Deep in the Niagara Gorge, stairways lead to 4 kilometers (2.5 miles) of rugged paths that wind through this pristine pocket of Carolinian Forest, through prehistoric geological formations. The Niagara Parks Botanical Gardens Established in 1936, offers visitors 99 acres (40 hectares) of beautifully maintained gardens, featuring their world-famous rose garden featuring over 2,400 roses. These are just a few of the many extraordinary outdoor adventures waiting for you in Niagara. Niagara is a diverse, inclusive, familyfriendly area with a rich multicultural heritage, with multiple settlement agencies and cultural organizations providing services for newcomers

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designed to connect you with the community. Immigration guides are accessible in more than 22 languages, from Arabic to Urdu, through the Niagara Region directly. Our Folk Arts Multicultural Center is where we celebrate and promote cultural inclusion. By fostering social and economic wellbeing among all immigrants and newcomers, we build the rich tapestry that is our community. A yearly festival bringing together all the different ethnic clubs in celebration of all cultures has been a region-wide staple for many years. The residents of the Niagara Region are as lucky as they come. It is a safe, affordable place to settle down, with a strong sense of community and a commitment to diversity. Whether you are starting a business or joining a team, the region holds promise for all, with business blossoming and growing within our borders. The bustling wine region and healthy tourist trade make every weekend an adventure. Whether you love the great outdoors or the classics, everything you could ever want is a stone’s throw away in Niagara.

*employment data provided by EMSI 2019.1 ** household data provided by City of Niagara Falls Community Investment Profile 2019


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Niagara New Development Highlights T

hese past few months have brought forth a situation that could not have predicted or prepared for. Many of our iconic industries sectors that depend upon the influx of visitors from around the world to seek and explore our beautiful region have come together in solidarity to spread hope and love until a time when it is safe to once again explore. As a region that has made it a priority to come together as One Niagara, it is without question that our future is very bright. Each municipality, with the support of the region, have been pressing forward with existing initiatives designed to push economic prosperity. The undoubtedly attractive benefits of doing business here have drawn more than 120 companies from around the globe to plant roots here and an abundance of residential growth. ►►► REVEAL NIAGARA BUSINESS MAGAZINE

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Courtesy of: Angela Davidson, Officer Economic Development City of Niagara Falls

CITY OF NIAGARA FALLS The prestigious Montrose Industrial business park is located off Montrose Road Between QEW McLeod & Lyon’s Creek Road interchange. Niagara Falls Council committed funding in 2019 to develop Blackburn Parkway and create and service 13 lots in its new 60-acre industrial park. Niagara’s Centennial Construction Limited won the bid for the Blackburn Parkway Road construction project that was completed in late fall 2019. Joining already built Star Warning Systems in the business park are several business expansions and new businesses to Niagara Falls. There remain some available lots that the city is aiming for economic prestige manufacturing businesses to create and generate jobs for Niagara residents. Currently, under construction is the new Blackburn Brewhouse and growing site expansion location for Cantex. With most of the lots already sold, the City’s Business Development Department believes the City must have land available to meet anticipated demand over the next several years.

TOWN OF LINCOLN Located east of Victoria Avenue North and west of Jordan Harbour, the Prudhommes Development Project is still in the planning stages, now approaching detail design for Phase 1. The completed project will include a mix of residential, commercial, retail, and green space. This project is a cornerstone waterfront development throughout Niagara Region and is currently the most significant along Lake Ontario in Southern Ontario, with a devotion to leading edge sustainability guidelines and green technology.

Courtesy of: Paul Di Ianni, Officer Economic Development Town of Lincoln


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Courtesy of: William Kolasa, Officer Economic Development Township of Wainfleet

TOWNSHIP OF WAINFLEET D&D Diamond Cutting and Coring was established in 1986 by brothers Doug and Dave Buiter, initially purchasing equipment from a retiring contractor and never imagining that the business would grow to what it is today. Initially and to some extent today, the concrete cutting and coring business is where their expertise lies. However, the brothers have expanded their expertise and ventured into other areas of the construction industry. They are currently undergoing a significant facility expansion and modernization to assist in their growing operations throughout Southwestern, Ontario, Canada.

CITY OF WELLAND

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Courtesy of: Lina DeChellis, Officer Economic Development City of Welland

Quickly becoming a shining star in the international spotlight, Welland boasts easy access to 75% of North America’s purchasing power, getting your products and services to market. With a continued increase in business growth, the demand for housing has been supported through the many residential projects recently approved or moving into the next phases of construction. This includes The Village on Prince Charles, a 7.4-acre residential property that will present approximately seventy townhouses built by Carey Homes. Phase two of the project is currently underway as fifteen homes located in phase one have already received occupancy.

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EDGE the

the

INFORMATION FOR THE NEXT LEVEL OF SUCCESS

“We must let go of the life we have planned, so as to accept the one that is waiting for us.” – Joseph Campbell

ONLY T HOSE WHO WILL RISK GOING T OO FAR CAN POSSIBLY FIND OUT

how far one can go

“I shall pass this way but once; any good that I can do or any kindness I can show to any human being; let me do it now.” ETIENNE de GRELLET 64

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REVEAL Niagara Business Magazine • Volume 1 Issue 2 • 2019

Stay Motivated

"You can't always get what you want. But if you try sometime, you'll find, you get what you need," – Sang The Rolling Stones


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“Nothing in life is to be feared,

it is only to be understood. Now is the time to understand more, so that we may fear less." - Marie Curie

“You do not want to regret not being agile or moving fast enough to prepare for the new normal that awaits us.”

Your business processes will require adjusting. Do not get caught with fear or worry, but instead come to terms with the fact that the way you used to do things is now forever changed, and that is OK.

"Worry is like a rocking chair: It gives you something to do but never gets you anywhere." - Erma Bombeck OUTLINE WHAT NEEDS TO HAPPEN, AND THEN THINK ABOUT HOW IT CAN HAPPEN “Is it shifting to remote work, adjusting workforce policies, or leveraging more online services? With technology, there is always a way,” says Dino, as he mentors small to medium businesses in the space of technology and education. “While this is a challenging time, it is also one full of opportunity, and together we can all flourish by supporting one another, businessto-business, and neighbour-to-neighbour. The incredible power that we have at our fingertips is priceless, and our ability to harness that power to navigate through this crisis ensures success is available to us all. “We use the internet every day and in every way. It went from being interesting and optional to being fundamental to our businesses and lives. It helped us pivot from emergency mode to sustainability mode. We rely on new tools to connect, share, learn, socialize, and work.

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If you’re offered a seat on a rocket ship, don’t ask what seat! Just get on. – Sheryl Sandberg

Many companies will not go back to the way things were. Pre-crisis, many companies were moving towards digital transformation but were being held back by hierarchy, company culture or lack of investment ability. This crisis has forced many of us to embrace what we already knew, leading us to see the benefits of collaborative digital tools that we have at our disposal.”

- Dino Miele, CEO & Founder of Innovation and Entrepreneurship and Former Chief Information Officer of DSBN

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PRIME AMBASSADOR


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Francesca Maiolo, CFP, CIM, FCSI Senior Investment Advisor | Financial Planner | Life Insurance Adivsor

We’ll guide you towards achieving your long term goals.

LM Private Wealth | Manulife Securities 1266 South Service Road, Suite C2-3, Stoney Creek, ON, L8E 5R9 P: 905-538-0202 ext. 222 | E: francesca.maiolo@manulifesecurities.ca Stocks, bonds and mutual funds are offered through Manulife Securities Incorporated. Insurance products and services are offered through Manulife Securities Insurance Inc. Banking products and services are offered through referral. LM Private Wealth is a trade name used to carry on business related to stocks, bonds and mutual fund products only. Please confirm with your Advisor which company you are dealing with for each of your products and services. Manulife Securities related companies are 100% owned by The Manufactures Life Insurance Company (MLI) which is 100% owned by the Manulife Financial Corporation a publically traded company. Details regarding all affiliated companies of MLI can be found on the Manulife Securities website www.manulifesecurities.ca. Please confirm with your advisor which company you are dealing with for each of your products and services. © 2020 Manulife Securities, all rights reserved.

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SOLUTIONS INC.

THERMAL SCREENING SOLUTIONS

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Reveal Niagara - Business Magazine - Vol. 1 | Issue 3  

Whether you live, work, or play in Niagara, Ontario, Canada, we hope that you enjoy reading this issue as much as we enjoyed putting it toge...

Reveal Niagara - Business Magazine - Vol. 1 | Issue 3  

Whether you live, work, or play in Niagara, Ontario, Canada, we hope that you enjoy reading this issue as much as we enjoyed putting it toge...