Monthly Archives: July 2013

Canadian Business Tips: Get All Your Employees to Ask Questions

success-pano_15320According to Hal Gregersen, a leadership and innovation professor at INSEAD and co-author of the book “The Innovator’s DNA,” asking questions is a practical tool to help you come up with new ideas, solve problems, and gain different perspectives.

To that end, Gregersen developed a questioning method, which he calls “Catalytic Questioning.” In a recent article in the Harvard Business Review, he describes how you can use Catalytic Questioning to nurture creative brainstorming, unearth new directions for your team or business, engage your employees, and determine innovative solutions.

Here’s how to implement this strategy

 

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Business to Business Growing in Canada

Business PBX

Canada’s top tech firms, with the exception of two of them, all have something in common. It isn’t some technological revolution they’re all in on, or some obscure machine that’s changing the landscape, or even a brand new software that’s letting some companies pull their sales and success above the competition. What they all have in common is that they’re selling to businesses, rather than to the general public.

Business to Business Growing Every Day

The reason that tech companies target businesses is pretty simple when one takes a step back and examines the strategy that’s present. It’s all about marketing. Huge, international tech companies have had a stranglehold on the consumer market for years, and attempting to pry their fingers off will take a lot of time, money and effort on the part of Canadian companies who want to squeeze into the mix. So rather than fighting a losing battle, many Canadian tech companies are simply choosing different, and arguably easier, targets.

Why Go For Businesses?

There are several reasons for this. The first advantage of marketing to businesses is that businesses, on the whole, are more concerned with the value of a product. Additionally, once a business has been sold to, it tends to buy in quantities much larger than an individual would ever purchase. Lastly, and this is one of the big ones, the huge conglomerates are not marketing as heavily toward businesses as they are toward individuals. That means that smaller, more local companies actually have a shot at being heard, which leads them to get more clients, more sales and thus to grow as a business.

This strategy is becoming more and more popular among Canadian tech companies. It’s also looking like it is definitely here to stay, as far as successful business strategies go.

Read the whole article Here

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Customer Case Study: Uniglobe Donaldson Travel

When the phones are down in a travel agency, it’s not an inconvenience, it’s a disaster.

Staying in touch with clients is the lifeblood of any travel agency. Agents must be instantly accessible with their customers wherever they are in the world keeping them up to date on specials, deals, travel tips and imaginative alternatives. This level of personal communication access builds close relationships and keeps clients happy and makes them loyal customers.

It’s the core of the travel agency business.

That’s why Uniglobe Donaldson Travel in Cambridge Ontario, part of the $5-billion/yr Uniglobe travel organization, switched to the NEWT™ Managed PBX telephone system because having consistent, reliable and clear communications with their clients is essential.

The Problem

Early in 2012 Uniglobe installed a VoIP phone system from another supplier. From the onset the system was having issues with dropped calls, inconsistent call quality, lost call data and poor customer service. For a travel agency, completely dependent on reliable communication this became an issue of paramount importance.

The Solution

Director of sales Marc Chiarenza was tasked with finding a replacement phone system and he reached out to Jeff Leasa at Fibernetics about the NEWT™ Managed PBX. To fix the dropped calls, and voice quality issues Jeff explained that Fibernetics NEWT™ Business PBX is a Managed End-to-End Solution.

Fibernetics is a Competitive Local Exchange Carrier (CLEC) or Telephone company competing directly against the big players.  Fibernetics is also an ISP and has their own PBX Platform.  This means that one provider does everything and that there would be no finger pointing as to who the issue was for the dropped calls or quality issues.  Jeff explained that Fibernetics could see right to the desktop phone sets and can support any business fully.  Jeff also assured Marc that Fibernetics would fully test and install the system correctly.  Having the proper install is the foundation for a successful and happy customer.  Fibernetics tested the Internet connection to the building first, once it was setup correctly the next phase was installing the system and doing the training.  On the install Mark said, “the transition was seamless.”

The Result

“It was a night and day improvement.”

The NEWT™ Managed PBX operates on the Fibernetics private network, meaning unlike other business phone vendors calls do not transit the unreliable public Internet.

For Uniglobe this provided unprecedented call quality and dependable business communication that the agency can depend on – while saving them money on their telecommunication costs.

“The cost savings wasn’t a major issue…. it’s nice that there is a cost savings… but it wasn’t the initiative to make the switch.”

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Case Study: The Cambridge Chamber of Commerce Installation

“I have never experienced anything, certainly with my staff, with such a quick and easy transition.”

                            – Cambridge Chamber CEO Greg Durocher

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Taking a Ride for Heart & Stroke

And we did it

 

To help support vital life-saving research of the Heart & Stroke Foundation, 28 volunteers from Fibernetics, NEWT™ & Worldline rode in the stifling heat

In the short time it took to complete the ride, somewhere in Canada TWO people suffered a stroke.

For how you can help with the Heart & Stroke Foundation, click HERE.

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It’s a “rare” thing – Fibernetics pitches in to clean up a Cambridge treasure

7621398_orig (1)Fibernetics’ head office is in Cambridge Ontario, part of the “Tech Triangle” that also includes Kitchener and Waterloo. Located petty much right in the middle of Southern Ontario, Cambridge is divided in two by the Grand River, and on the western shore through a large portion of the city is therare Charitable Research Reservea Central Park-sized parcel of privately held land dedicated to environmental and ecological education.

Founded in 2001, the rare Charitable Research Reserve is a 900+acre land reserve situated at the confluence of the Grand and Speed Rivers.  The Reserve is not only a beautiful and culturally significant landscape, but includes trees more than 240 years old and provides an array of habitats that supports rich biodiversity. This pristine landscape is home to an incredible array of flora and fauna, some of which are ranked significant regionally, provincially, nationally, even globally.

rare stewards this magnificent natural jewel striving to preserve the land for future generations by focusing on conservation, ecological restoration, research and education while also providing wonderful passive recreation opportunities to the surrounding community.

This private charity has opened up the property to the public for hiking and education sessions, and they’ve also donated tracks for public vegetable garden plots.

Amanda at rare

All that said, the land rare has, wasn’t always a nature reserve. Rather, it was working industrial and farmland, and the previous owners, seeing as it’s been occupied for over a century, weren’t all that environmental. In places it’s a mess and there is an ongoing program underway to not just clean up what’s there, but to return it to what it was – a pristine environment, completely reflective of naturally occurring Southern Ontario flora and fauna.

And that means cleaning out a bunch of invasive species and clearing up a lot of crap.

Worldine takes their role in the Cambridge community very seriously, and that’s why, working with the United Way, we committed ourselves to helping rare get to where it wants to be.

Worldline at rare

The next time you are in Cambridge, make sure you check out rare and all it has to offer,  beauty, education and appreciation of what a fabulous place we all live and work. And while you’re there, also check out what’s not there – four truckloads of some seriously nasty stuff.

Well done guys.

 

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