Congratulations to our Winners

Business of the Year 1-15 Employees – Sponsored by TELUS PureFibre

Winner – Pacific Ridge Landscapes

Business of the Year 16 + Employees – Sponsored by Island Savings

Winner – Titan Boats

Not for Profit Organization of the Year – Sponsored by Casman Properties

Winner – Saanich Peninsula Lions Food Bank

Contribution to the Community – Sponsored by Flader CPA & Peggy Yelland & Associates

Winner – Hughesman Morris CPA

Green Business of the Year – Sponsored by Peninsula News Review

Winner – Focus Hair Design

Entrepreneurial Spirit – Sponsored by Camosun/UVic Co-op Programs

Winner – Urban Bee Honey Farm

New Business, Product or Service of the Year – Sponsored by Hughesman Morris

Winner – Trich Analytics

Employer of the Year – Sponsored by BMT, Bottle Depot and Coastal Heat Pumps

Winner – Bayshore Home Health

Outstanding Customer Service – Sponsored by Victoria Airport Authority

Winner – All Care Canada (Sidney)

Newsmaker of the Year – Sponsored by the Times Colonist

Winner – McTavish Academy of Art

Lifetime Achievement Award – Sponsored by Peninsula Co-op

Winner – Michell Family

 

Do it Right or Do it Over

Gather together a group of business owners or managers today and the topic of conversation naturally turns to the difficulty of recruiting and retaining employees. The first of two articles on these challenges, this one will deal with recruitment issues.

The cost to recruit and train an employee for an entry-level position is estimated to be about 16% of a year’s wages. Recruiting costs for senior managers can range as high as 200% of the position’s yearly salary. The recruitment process is time-consuming and expensive. The traditional method of hiring was to place an ad, expect to receive an overwhelming number of calls and applications, screen out most of the applicants, interview the top three candidates and hire the one who seemed to be the best fit for the position. This strategy does not work in this current labour market. Some companies have gotten so desperate they have resorted to paying candidates to come in for an interview. It’s a given that your compensation package must be competitive in order to attract the best candidates but potential new employees are looking beyond compensation. Also important to them is a work-life balance, flexibility, work that feels meaningful, shared values, and opportunities for growth.  

Reported HR woes include “job ghosting” by new hires who just don’t show up for work. Increasingly common are situations where new employees are asked to do a task they don’t understand or are requested to do something they don’t wish to do and simply walk out. These are examples of employees who were not well-matched for the job, were not properly trained, or found themselves in a work environment that did not provide the necessary support. If you don’t have time to recruit, onboard and train new hires properly, you will find the time to do it again

When it’s so difficult to find employees you are tempted to place any warm body. Hiring the right person can bring you new customers. Sometimes hiring the wrong person will result in you having to do a lot of clean up to restore your clients’ faith in your business. Recruiting is a full-time job. Business owners must be looking for the next best employee at networking events, in the grocery line-up, at their child’s sporting event, and at get-togethers with family and friends. When you have identified an appropriate candidate, it is crucial that you take the time to check references and ensure they are a good fit. Go beyond the information and contacts that are readily available. Listen to what is being said and for what isn’t. Once you have made the hiring decision, tailor the orientation and training so as to establish the best possible foundation for your new hire.

And then, when you are congratulating yourself for finally placing a winner, turn your attention to how you are going to keep that person engaged and employed. You don’t want to watch your investment walk out the door to another company which more clearly demonstrates their long-term commitment to their employees.

 

Denny Warner,

Executive Director

Our Economy is Delivered by Truck

You likely have not given much thought to how the items you buy arrived at the store. Almost 90% of all consumer goods (by weight) in Canada are moved, for at least a portion of their journey, by truck. On Vancouver Island that number is much closer to 100% as we rely, almost exclusively, on trucks to deliver our food, fuel, and other consumer goods. The trucking industry has grown by more than 30% in the last 10 years. According to ICBC insurance data, approximately 1000 new heavy duty commercial trucks are added to BC’s roads each year.

There are two issues that are going to materially change the way goods are transported in this country. First, by 2020, trucks and buses will be required to be fitted with Electronic Logging Devices. This is an important safety initiative and it will have significant impact on communities which will need to be prepared to host trucks and drivers with appropriate space and amenities when they park for their mandated rest periods. Companies are in desperate need of employees. Currently 93% of their drivers are men. Women are interested in the relatively high-paying driving jobs but the lack of safe rest spaces with facilities is a true barrier to employment in trucking for most women.

The second issue is an increasing awareness by the trucking industry that they need to become more green. Approximately 14% of all greenhouse gas emissions are produced by motor carriers. Tesla is producing an electric semi truck but the maximum distance it can travel is 800 km before charging and that distance can only be attained on flat terrain with limited load weight. Nikola plans to have its hydrogen trucks in production by 2020. Likely, the trucks of the future will be hydrogen/electric hybrids which will necessitate installation of fueling and charging stations.

For the more than 30 years our Information Centre has been in operation on the Pat Bay Highway, the site has acted as a de facto truck stop. Drivers stop here to transfer loads, take bathroom and smoke breaks, to teach new drivers, and to rest overnight. We don’t encourage all of these activities because their trucks take a toll on our curbs and pavement and the drivers are not always responsible users of the garbage cans and washrooms. Accommodating trucks and drivers is a strain on our Chamber’s limited financial resources. Our signs indicate we don’t allow overnight parking and occasionally the RCMP tell drivers they have to leave, but because they have nowhere else to go, there are several trucks parked here every night. Given our economic reliance on trucks and the goods they deliver, it is in our best interest to be more welcoming by providing safe, rest places with appropriate amenities.

For many years we have considered how we could make better use of our site on the highway and potentially make use of the property behind us to accommodate trucks. We will continue consultations with the BC Trucking Association and initiate discussions with BC Ferries, Ministry of Transportation and our own MLA, Adam Olsen in our efforts to provide support for the trucking industry. Our economic well-being depends on it.

Building Bridges Between Institutions – Part 3

Employers report that new workers entering the workforce often do not have the skills required to fulfill the terms of their employment. In addition, much of the existing workforce requires retraining to update their skills so companies can continue to compete in the changing economy. Educational institutions and local employers would benefit from a closer working relationship. We are pleased to participate in organizing is the EduTech trade show, scheduled for the fall, which will do exactly that – provide a direct link between Peninsula employers, educators and students. (more…)

2017 Crystal Awards Nomination

Award Criteria by Category
  • Business of the Year Award: 1 - 15 Employees

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. Continuing business success through:
      • growth (can be revenue/sales, profits, employees, products/services, customer base)
      • employee satisfaction and retention
    2. Exceptional customer service by continuously striving to exceed customer expectations, and by delivering high standards of service with creativity and innovation.
    3. An on-going commitment to quality through employee motivation, quality processes, employee education and management involvement.
  • Business of the Year Award: 16+ Employees

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. Continuing business success through:
      • growth (can be revenue/sales, profits, employees, products/services, customer base)
      • employee satisfaction and retention
    1. Exceptional customer service by continuously striving to exceed customer expectations, and by delivering high standards of service with creativity and innovation.
    2. An on-going commitment to quality through employee motivation, quality processes, employee education and management involvement.
  • Not-for-Profit Organization of the Year

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. The organization’s commitment to its clients
    2. How the organization has contributed to the community
    3. How the organization supports employee growth and development and contributes to their well-being, satisfaction and motivation
    4. How the organization motivates, rewards and recognizes its volunteers
  • Contribution to the Community Award

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. How the business has ‘given back’ to the community through corporate sponsorship (i.e. cash donations, contributions of services, goods or materials, in-kind).
    2. The types of events the business has supported over the past year (i.e. community activities, festivals, events, sporting events or teams, cultural events, social initiatives)
    3. How the business provides mentorship and leadership in encouraging and facilitating community pride and spirit amongst staff while both at work and away from the work environment.
  • Green Business of the Year Award

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. A long-term commitment to environmental sustainability through leadership and the integration of environmentally responsible practices into culture of their business
    2. Key “green” projects that have been implemented in the business and how they have been tracked and measured
    3. How the company engages stakeholders and/or clients and/or the community in activities that support environmental sustainability.
  • Entrepreneurial Spirit Award

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. Personal efforts to establish or expand the business
    2. An innovative product or a valuable new service, or one which has adapted and improved a current product or service to keep pace with the times and the needs of its clients
    3. A commitment to continuous improvement and growth
  • New Business Award

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. Being in business for two years or less
    2. Significant growth and a plan for continued growth
    3. A commitment to providing a high quality product or service
    4. Excellent customer service
  • Employer of the Year Award

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. A workplace culture reflecting the importance of work/life balance
    2. A commitment to providing a healthy and safe work environment
    3. A commitment to providing on-going training and/or professional development opportunities
    4. A positive workplace culture encouraging respect and engaged employees
  • New Product or Service (Existing Business) Award

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. The development or introduction of a new product or service between January and December 2016
    2. The innovative nature of the new product or service
    3. The usefulness of the new product or service
    4. The actual or potential benefit of the new product or service
  • Outstanding Customer Service Award

    Applicants in this category must demonstrate:

    1. How their customer service strategy contributes to an exceptional customer experience with positive reviews or recognition
    2. How their customer service strategy encourages customer loyalty
    3. How their customer service strategy has resulted in a more motivated and engaged staff
    4. How their customer service strategy has improved operational excellence

Nominate Your Choice Now!

Thank you for your nominations. Nominations are now being reviewed. Sept 8th, 2017

It Takes a Region to Raise an Economy – Part 2 of 3

Last month I discussed the strategy of growing the economy by attracting more people to live in an area and suggested the most desirable groups to target based on their ability and willingness to contribute to the overall health of a community are baby boomers, entrepreneurial immigrants and millennials. Now we will look at how the quality of place matters in attracting newcomers. (more…)

Economic Growth through Population Growth Part I in a series

There was a significant shift between the old and new economies that occurred between the 1990’s and 2000’s. The old economy is filled with success stories of companies whose road to prosperity began initially by identifying an inexpensive place to do business in a community with preferential zoning and taxation policies and ideally, an established industrial park. People followed the jobs. Manufacturing businesses, largely dependent upon fossil fuels, were responsible for much of the economic growth. (more…)

Shut Up and Listen!

Many years ago I had the privilege to work on a community economic development project with Ernesto Sirolli. Lessons from that project and from his book Ripples from the Zambezi: Passion Entrepreneurship and the Rebirth of Local Economies, have long resonated. His lifelong passion for empowering entrepreneurs is inspirational and instructional when considering how we provide aid or assistance to countries or to people in our own communities. (more…)