Canada is a nation of entrepreneurs.
The Canadian economy thrives on small and medium-sized businesses, with 90% of exporting companies having fewer than 100 employees, yet still producing 25% of the total value of Canadian exports. With more than 1.1 million small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in Canada, and about half (55%) having fewer than four employees, Canadian business is primarily small or medium, and can arguably be considered our lifeblood.
So it’s no wonder that every October comes Small Business Week (SBW), where we celebrate Canadian small businesses and everything they do! This year, SBW takes place from October 20th to October 27th, and Benefits by Design has some ideas on how to participate that we’re excited to share with you! 2019’s theme is, “showcasing the people behind the business”, which is not only a great theme for SBW, it has fantastic benefits to workplaces on the whole. After all, celebrating an individual’s success and rewarding their good deeds has been proven to increase employee engagement and productivity.
So let’s get ready to celebrate, participate, and improve our businesses!
Why Participate in Small Business Week?
We’re going to have to answer our question here with another question:
Are you a small business owner yourself?
Because if the answer is yes, then why wouldn’t you participate? It’s an excuse to celebrate your own successes, an opportunity to build and grow your business, and celebrate your employee’s accomplishments and showcase their work and why it’s important. It’s an entire week dedicated to you and everything you do! So don’t feel weird about bragging about your great organization a little bit – this week is all about you.
If you’re not a small business owner, the statistics say that if you’re employed in Canada, you probably work for one. That means it’s time for you to shout from the rooftops what you bring to the table. Remember – this year’s theme is “showcasing the people behind the business”, and that means you. Consider what you do at your organization to make it better and how you help it thrive and grow and then share it with someone else, and get them to do the same. We think you’ll be surprised by what you learn.
Showcasing the People Behind the Business
At Benefits by Design, our mission is to help working Canadians. Though we’re pushing almost 100 employees and don’t consider ourselves a small business anymore, we’ve been there. So, for SBW, we asked some of our employees to share how they fulfill our mission. Here’s what they had to say:
Oliva Adams, Graphic Designer, Kingston, ON:
“I help working Canadians by designing content that helps them to understand their benefit plans in a simple way, letting them get back to living their best lives worry-free!”
Darcy Shea, Regional Director, Toronto, ON:
“I help working Canadians by supporting Advisors to connect business owners with the benefits plan that is right for them and their employees.”
Willow Munro, Client Specialist, Port Coquitlam, BC:
“I help working Canadians by supporting them in the day-to-day administration of their benefits plan and connecting them with the coverage they need to keep their employees happy and healthy.”
Justin Karch, Business Analyst, Kingston, ON:
“I help working Canadians by analyzing data to improve client support and technology platforms, and improving upon our current customer relationship management solutions to make the world of group benefits more accessible to our clients.”
Adam Busschaert, HR Generalist, Toronto, ON:
“I help working Canadians starting right from within BBD. Together with the rest of the HR department, we provide employees with ongoing support throughout their employment.”
Try a similar exercise amongst your own employees. Not only is it a great way to participate in SBW, but it’s rewarding, and reinforces your mission, vision, and values and the role your employees play in reaching them!
4 Ways to Participate in Small Business Week 2019 (And Beyond)
Not sure how to participate? Here are a few ideas:
Share success stories
This year is all about celebrating your employees and the people behind the business, so it’s the perfect time to celebrate success! Encourage your employees to share stories or how they fulfill your mission statement (like we did above). Share the message on your website or social media channels for optimal reach – and don’t forget to us @bbdcanada!
Attend a BDC Small Business Week Event
The Business Development Bank of Canada (BDC) are the brains behind Small Business Week, and to celebrate the occasion, they are hosting a number of events across the country and online! Check out the events below and see what’s happening in your area, or register for one of the online webinars!
Keep it up year-round
Participating in SBW is a great first step, but it’s important to keep things going beyond a week-long celebration, particularly when it comes to showcasing your employees. Remember that recognizing and rewarding employees provides big boosts to your business and reinforces your mission, vision, and values!
Participate in our Small Business Week email campaign!
All next week, from October 21st to October 25th, we’ll be distributing a daily email sharing available resources, tips, and tricks to help small businesses better utilize available services.
Celebrate your success and take a step towards a better business by joining us for our email campaign!