New updates can be found on our client portfolio page! Take a peak at the great companies we have had the pleasure of assisting and working with!

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Client Portfolio Update

A big thank you to Acceleration Performance and Total Rehabilitation and Sports Injury Clinic along with Acceleration Fitness Center for their recent business in assisting in the creation of their company policy and procedure manual.

Their company logo’s as well as links to their websites have been posted on my client portfolio page for more information.


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Ohhhh to be a fly on the wall….

Have you ever imagined how wonderful it would be to watch your staff undetected and undisturbed while they are working. Watching their true dynamics with customers and seeing them work through their daily operational tasks?

Ohhhh to be a fly on the wall….. hearing, & watching everything that happens on a daily basis to know first hand what the heck is happening behind your back.

Since we unfortunately cannot be a fly on the wall, there are ways to gather information and knowledge to learn what is happening at your business when you are not there.

Secret Shoppers (hired company)

Secret Shoppers (hired friends)

Customer surveys or feedback questionnaires

Follow up meetings with staff

Video cameras

At some point in time it does become important to understand as best as possible if your staff are conducting business operations the way in which they are intended. At some point we need to be aware of any kinks in the chain so we can work at solving day-to-day problems. Although there is a fine line between spying and not trusting your staff vs. showing confidence and trust in staff, it is however always important to look out for what is best for your business.

Checking in every now and again is highly encouraged to ensure you keep a handle on your business. After all, the investment is yours!

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Undercover Boss

For me personally, PVR is right up there with the greatest inventions that benefit my life! My most recent PVR lineup consists of the weekly presentations of Undercover Boss Canada. I am excited every week to see which company is featured and what each company finds about the inner workings of their business.

The great thing about this show is that it really highlights how “out of touch” you can become with what happens on the front lines of your business. In particular, what happens during the daily transactions between your staff and customers as well as what challenges and difficulties are presented on a daily basis which make your teams jobs more difficult.

Whether your business is large or small this premise pertains to all businesses. We get so caught up in running our company and staying behind the scenes to manage change and company growth but we often forget that the front line changes as well. Staffing changes with generations, technology changes to process transactions, customers expectations change and product or service requirements change. We forget to “check in” with our older or perhaps out of date processes to really make sure they are working correctly for our company growth strategies.

Here are some questions to consider: When was the last time you watched your staff and critiqued their people skills? When was the last time you walked through your business and took note of the equipment or machines that were not up to date with their maintenance? When was the last time you surveyed your customers to find out what they really wanted?

Some food for thought as we begin to approach a season where people become more alive, a season which brings out new ideas and fresh thinking, a season which has everyone’s eyes and ears a bit more open and in tune with their surroundings. Spring is a season to refocus, rejuvenate and re-train our processes to ensure we are doing our best as a company from both behind the seasons and the front lines.

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Working in teams….is it effective?


The answer is simple, yes and no!

Team work, when established correctly can be of great benefit to your organization, project or task however poorly established team work can be of no benefit at all. Theories tell us that once teams are created the job will surely get done and will get done right, however that is certainly not the case. Just because a team has been implemented, doesn’t mean the team is best to get the job done.

So what are the characteristics of a good team?

Clear Goals

Relevant skills

Trust amongst each other

Joint commitment


Negotiating skills


Support for one another

External support

As with any team (sports teams, work teams, family teams) there needs to be a sense of group cohesion. The members of the team need to feel a connection to one another and believe that the team members have the best interest of the team and commitment to the goal in mind at all times. The team needs to know they are working together and feel a sense that it’s a “one for all and all for one’ mindset. Simply put, strong cohesiveness creates high productivity, without cohesiveness all you have is a group of people working against each other.

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European Lifestyles

Maybe Europeans have it right….?

Back from a wonderful trip to Europe after visiting Germany, Amsterdam and London it was amazing to see how other people live in their respective countries. First and foremost, a huge observation we made was the frequency of cell phone and laptop use by Europeans vs. Canadians and for that matter Americans. I can honestly say, I saw more people on their laptops and cell phones in the Calgary airport during a lay over than I saw the entire time I was away over a 12 day period.

Businesses close from 12-2 each day as a standard practice for lunch breaks, businesses close by 6pm in the evening. People are laid back, easy going but still very focused on future goals, passions, education and personal interests. Walking down the street it is common practice to see people having a casual alcoholic beverage in between their work shifts. The overall mentality of many Europeans is work to live and not live to work. There is a strong understanding that bigger is not always better, life and family and friends are important, not the status of your position, the car you drive or the clothes you wear. Passion and excitement and connections are what is important. I must say it was refreshing, eye opening and somewhat life changing…as cliche as that may seem.

Being in the Human Resource field it is always tug of war between increasing company prosperity and maintaining employee engagement; after my trip to Europe it has definitely opened my eyes to a new way of looking at things. Now obviously I realize different European markets function and are driven differently and major centers can be more “North American” in work mentality than perhaps the smaller centers but from my somewhat brief experience and from speaking to local residents, it is clear there is a substantially different mind-set than what we are perhaps used to.

What we think is right just might not be the best way of doing things

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Defining Expectations

Many business owners become frustrated on a daily, weekly and monthly basis because their staff just are not doing what they are expected to do. Day in and day out staff under perform, don’t complete all the daily tasks, staff don’t treat customers properly and they certainly do not work as a group to get the job done.

So we ask ourselves as business owners…why can’t I get my staff to do their job properly….? This is where it should dawn on you….you have failed to define your expectations!

We take for granted that day-to-day operations are supposed to run smoothly, that staff should pick up and learn and perform by company standards. We think that after a certain period of time following training and probationary periods that staff should be able to function on their own. However….we ourselves take for granted that staff need constant tools provided to them, they need “to-do” lists to know which tasks are to be completed and most importantly they need to know what is EXPECTED of them; not just when they are hired, not just when they have reviews quarterly, semi-annually or annually, but daily, weekly and monthly they should know what is expected of them.

We cannot become complacent and continue to believe our staff just “get it” because unfortunately they do not always get it and as companies change and expectations evolve, staff need to be made aware of the next course of action to continue to make the company successful.

So next time you are frustrated and are trying to find a way to get your staff on the same page….ask yourself “Have I defined my expectations?”

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