Calgary’s dynamic Small Business Week (SBW) is a triple boon for the community, generating motivation, respect and understanding about the vital components encompassing small business.
According to recent statistics, more than 98 per cent of Canadian businesses have fewer than 100 employees.
“The whole purpose behind why we host SBW is to recognize the many contributions that Calgary small business makes to the local economy,” says Adam Legge, president and CEO of the Calgary Chamber, the key organizer of Calgary’s weeklong business event. “In challenging business times, like the past couple of years, the event is even more important because small businesses get hit the hardest during a downturn.
“We have grown Calgary’s SBW into the largest celebration in the country. Last year, the conference had over 1,000 attendees and was an opportunity for many small businesses to showcase their products and services to hundreds of possible clients.
“The awards brought recognition and increased brand exposure for 40 of Calgary’s dynamic small businesses through a variety of media and promotional opportunities,” he points out.
Exposure is important because many people still stereotype and misunderstand small business.
Meticulon, one of last year’s SBW award winners, is a Calgary business proving that autistic adults can be valuable employees in the IT sector. According to CEO Garth Johnson, “Small business is sometimes thought of as unsophisticated, unprofessional and unprofitable. Nothing could be further from the truth. Successful small business owners are on the cutting edge of their market. And there are many with less than 50 people generating millions in annual revenues.
“Calgary is a business community where your word is your bond and your word is your brand. Calgarians like innovation and they love to support new ideas and ventures.
“The award was unbelievably helpful for us in moving from startup to sustainability. It helped us earn support from our existing customer base and we grew by over 30 per cent in the coming months. What could be more motivational than being recognized by your peers who you respect and wish to emulate?”
“Small businesses must have the right people, the right culture, be open-minded to different ideas, be consistent, disciplined and creative, and have a good plan,” explains Greg Garcia, president and CEO of Calgary Elite Roofing, also a winner of a 2016 SBW Award.
“The awards give a small business instant credibility and leverage in your industry, open the door for small businesses to meet people they couldn’t meet before and learn from their expertise in marketing, legal, business development and more.
“Winning the award is like having a permanent shot of adrenalin. Our business has grown about 20 per cent since we won last year.”
“One of the biggest parts of Small Business Week is about inspiring entrepreneurs,” Legge emphasizes. “Whether it is exceptional keynote speakers who share their stories of success and failure or learning new cutting-edge strategies that will help small business owners think differently, bigger, bolder and keep them one step ahead.”
The details about Calgary’s (October 16-20, 2017) Small Business Week are at www.smallbusinessweekcalgary.com.