Bank of Canada Survey of Consumer Expectations – Q4 2022

Business Outlook from Bank of Canada

The BOC just released its benchmark Consumer Expectations survey from Q4, and, while the results aren’t necessarily surprising to anyone in the SMB community, they do present some opportunities. First, the highlights: Consumers have reduced purchases of discretionary items Access to consumer credit has worsened, and real wage growth has declined, further pressuring households Consumers … Read more

There’s Always Room to Be Better

No matter how many years you’ve been in business, how many customers love you, what your financials and KPI’s indicate: you can be better. If you disagree, I’ll invite you to visit your local Apple Store.  There, you’ll see best in class: retail customer service floor management processes payment and receipting processes upsell programs staff … Read more

A New Model to Boost Productivity

workplace - scandinavian model worksheet

Spain recently announced a brave new national strategy to improve worker productivity. The model was introduced during the pandemic, and is referred-to as the ‘Scandinavian Model’ – at its core is a belief that productivity will rise if working hours are reduced. It’s only for full time employees, and Spain intends to – at least … Read more

The Value of Mystery Shoppers

the value of mystery shoppers

Mystery shopping – the act of having someone pose as a customer, with the intent of gathering non-biased insight into the customer journey with your business – is a valuable undertaking. The value of engaging a mystery shopper is directly related to two things: Your potential customer lifetime value (the higher the PCLV, the greater … Read more

Canada Small Business Financing Program

Canadian Small Business Loan Program

From the CRA site: ” The Canada Small Business Financing Program makes it easier for small businesses to get loans from financial institutions by sharing the risk with lenders. Term loans can be used to finance the following costs: purchase or improvement of land or buildings used for commercial purposes purchase or improvement of new or … Read more

Bank Loan Loss Provisions Up

loan loss provisions

In this morning’s Globe and Mail, James Bradshaw reports ‘Scotiabank’s fourth-quarter profit slips on higher costs, increased loan-loss provisions.’ In his report, Bradshaw notes that “Provisions for credit losses spiked from ultralow levels last year”.  He goes on to note that “Scotiabank continued to face pressure on its profit margin on loans, with its net … Read more

Retirement Readiness Calculator

retirement calculator for smb owners

SMB owners are notorious for ‘kicking the can down the road’ on the subject of retirement readiness. Too many priorities? This worksheet is a useful tool to get a sense of where you are now, and where you need to be: Please note that this is provided for information only, and is not to replace … Read more

What’s Your Business Worth?

business value calculator

A key component of the net worth of any SMB owner is the value tied-up in their business. While most people have a good idea of their personal net worth, its easy to overlook the potential sale value of their business. This calculator (presented for information purposes only) will give you a sense of the … Read more

Great Service Doesn’t Just Happen – It Needs to be Managed

How bad service can kill your business

SMB’s often make the mistake of thinking that they have ‘great service’…usually because the business was built from scratch, often as service as a core value. But, when the business grows, the ability to manage service as effectively as in the ‘old days’ can too-easily slip away.  Without a service-management structure in place, the gradual … Read more