Douglas Weekly – March 18

Douglas Weekly - Mar 18
Photo from: South Island Prosperity Partnership's Official Facebook Account.


On the Rise
A short recap of the South Island Prosperity Partnership’s (SIPP) fourth annual Rising Economy Conference.

Five minutes from downtown Victoria, just over the Bay Street Bridge, the Delta Ocean Pointe Resort buzzes with excitement as entrepreneurs, politicians and innovators flood the hotel’s ballroom. Inside, these folks shake hands, trade small-talk and swap business cards. Then the lights dim, and SIPP’s CEO Emilie de Rosenroll kicks off the Rising Economy Conference’s opening plenary.

What followed were three days of presentations and panel discussions about everything from artificial intelligence to the blue economy to macroeconomic trends. The goal: to help business owners and entrepreneurs seize opportunities and prepare for economic challenges on the South Island. Says de Rosenroll, “Rising Economy from the very beginning has always been all about building more resilience and encouraging business leadership.”

SIPP also unveiled Victoria Rising — a website designed to fill the skills gap on the South Island. “It’s focused on attracting talent where we have shortages and gaps,” says de Rosenroll. “We’re really trying to show the dynamism of the market here and … the diversity of people and lifestyles.”

Victoria Rising isn’t just a website — it’s an initiative, too. “What we want to do is work with companies and help customize material for them to use in their recruitment,” adds the CEO.

Find out more about SIPP here and the organization’s Victoria Rising website here.


Lifelong Learning Outside the Classroom

Education shouldn’t end with school. By creating a culture of continuous learning, companies can thrive and build a team of loyal, high performers.

In the movie Good Will Hunting, Matt Damon plays a self-taught genius working as a janitor who famously slams a smarmy Ivy Leaguer with these memorable words:

“You dropped 150 grand on an education you could have gotten for $1.50 in late charges at the public library.”

The wisdom he offers is profound, because what your business needs to get ahead may be at your fingertips. Formal education is vitally important, but there is plenty of knowledge to be gained outside the classroom.

The phrase “hire for attitude, train for skills”  has been attributed to former Southwest Airlines CEO Herb Kelleher, but it’s a widely held belief that soft skills (i.e. work ethic or humour) are often more important to success than hard skills (i.e. accounting or computer programming). Studies by Harvard University, the Carnegie Foundation and Stanford University have all concluded that 85 per cent of success comes from having well-developed soft skills, while only 15 per cent comes from hard skills. Hiring on this notion and maintaining an always-learning culture will help businesses position themselves well among their competitors and attain long-term success.

Moreover, lifelong learners are intrinsically more loyal (as long as they are given ample opportunities for professional development). They’re also more engaged at work and have higher levels of fulfillment and enjoyment. Lastly, a learning mindset promotes creativity and problem solving, both vital to innovation.

Workers need to keep learning and gaining skills at every level, especially in technology and related fields. Encouraging lifelong learning ensures agile and adaptable talent with relevant skills and the flexibility to pivot when the next change rolls through.

Read the full article here.


Coming up:  


March 19-22: Indigenous Youth Leadership Training Event

March 20: Chai ‘n’ Chat Entrepreneurs Networking Event

March 21: Saanich Peninsula Chamber March Mixer

March 21: Building Cultures of Belonging Seminar

March 22: Victoria F*ckup Nights 

March 27: Hiring Foreign Worker Opportunities Webinar

March 28: Tech Social


April 3: Designers Mixer

April 8: Introduction to Coding Workshop

April 11: Victoria Chamber Emerge Connector

April 16: Victoria Chamber of Commerce Annual General Meeting

April 17: Business Transformation Roadshow

April 18: Saanich Peninsula Chamber April Mixer

April 23: Advanced AI: Friend of Foe — UVic Lecture

April 30: Breakfast with Premier David Eby Presentation 


May 7: Greater Victoria Business Awards Ceremony


June 11-13: Local Government Management Association Conference