Agri-food supercluster could super-charge Canada’s economy

Nine groups await word from Ottawa on which gets to tap the $950-million supercluster innovation fund

Agri-food supercluster could super-charge Canada’s economyThe supercluster effect is one of the intriguing outcomes of dangling dollars in front of sectors hungry for innovation investment. Nine groups await word from the federal government on which gets to tap the $950-million supercluster innovation coffer. Ottawa established the fund last year to help reshape the Canadian economy and set it up for future…

7 quick and easy SEO tips for small businesses

These seven easy SEO tips can have a great impact on your website

7 quick and easy SEO tips for small businessesIf you are running a small business, SEO can seem complex. Primarily driven by Google, SEO best practices are always changing, which can make tackling them on your own seem even more difficult. Here are seven easy SEO tips that can have a great impact on your website and which any small business owner can…

New Year’s resolutions that will boost your business

In the gig economy, more and more of us will be out on our own. That means we need to hone new skills to help our enterprises succeed

New Year’s resolutions that will boost your businessAs 2017 morphs into 2018, more than numbers on the calendar are changing. Technology, communications, media, weather – even the way we work and earn our livings – aren’t what they used to be. It used to be jobs, jobs, jobs. That’s what we wanted for ourselves, our partners, our kids; it's what politicians promised…

Mastering the fine art of marketing for the betterment of your business

The best marketing plans make offers that benefit customers and give the businesses involved tangible boosts

Mastering the fine art of marketing for the betterment of your businessBusinesses go all out during the holiday season to get us to spend our carefully-collected coins in exchange for glittering goods and services. Every form of media jingles and jangles with inducements for us to get to an establishment or website and partake of the delights offered. No wonder we become jaded. And no wonder…

7 essential rules to creating a social media policy

You will have a difficult time winning in court if you never told employees they couldn’t do what they did

7 essential rules to creating a social media policyIt’s relentless. You find stories every day on Google that announce how someone got fired for posting senseless comments on social media. We call that getting “dooced”. You’ve probably been alerted to potential disputes such as these: Are you legally exposed when it comes to the rights of employees who want to freely post on…

How to spark entrepreneurship in students

Students should be encouraged to think beyond their own thesis research project and consider other options - such as entrepreneurship - for their career

How to spark entrepreneurship in studentsI recently had the pleasure of being a judge for the University of Calgary’s first Innovation 4 Health hack-athon. This biomedical engineering (BME) graduate-student-led competition brought together multidisciplinary teams to design solutions for surgery and recovery problems posed by health-care professionals. Over four months of almost full-time work, a team of five BME graduate students envisioned…

Just say no to sugarcoated communications

Got a bad taste in your mouth? Maybe it's from all those sugar-coated messages you keep getting

Just say no to sugarcoated communicationsSugar-coated messages are in bad taste. In survey after survey, people ask for straight talk on all issues. They don't want artificially-sweetened words that supposedly will help the medicine – that is, the tough messages – go down. When you sugarcoat communication, you're superficially making something attractive or palatable. That's inauthentic, which can cause more…

Chronic compromising why most small businesses fail

Learning how to start with no, rather than starting with yes or maybe, will boost your business success

Chronic compromising why most small businesses failThe mortality rate for small businesses is scary. Approximately seven out of 10 new small businesses survive at least two years, half almost five years, a third more than 10 years, according to research. And 25 per cent last 15-plus years. The reasons for the high mortality rate changes little year-to-year. High on the list…

Tips for terminating employees with dignity

Most managers, regardless of level, handle the uncomfortable task of terminating employees badly

Tips for terminating employees with dignityMost managers, regardless of level, handle the uncomfortable task of terminating employees badly. The biggest mistake managers make is terminating them in a harsh, unkind and insensitive way. The manner in which employees are fired often fuels lawsuits. Right or wrong, if employees feel that they are being unfairly treated, they perceive it as grounds…

Three traits define extraordinary leadership

True leaders possess what is identified as the following three intangibles of leadership: will, fortitude and self-efficacy

Three traits define extraordinary leadershipLeadership is one of those mysterious intangibles pundits have yet to get their hands around.  Considering the number of books and articles written about the subject, it's doubtful that it will ever be satisfactorily explained. Nevertheless, new insights keep coming. Why do certain CEOs relish taking on challenges that have literally ended the careers of…