Thursday, April 26, 2012

Oh no BBQ!!

Michelle with our banner
Big Red broken down saves the day
Thanks Mom!

Once again Costless customers and staff came together at the Art Museum downtown for the annual Jeans Day BBQ. 

Always on my mind is the weather for a big event like this. In past years we've been rained out and had glorious sun.

Never in my mind was the possibility that our huge BBQ called "Big Red" would break down! No BBQ = No BBQ.

Just as we thought all hope was lost - Vancouver's finest food trucks and surrounding hotels came to the rescue and were able to cook over 1000 hot dogs till Big Red was fixed.

A big Thank You for all your support !

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Culture: The Competitive Advantage

What a great speaker we just had at our Vegas Internet show! Jim Fitzgibbon, the past president of Four Seasons Resorts.
The title of his presentation was "Culture: The Competitive Advantage" so I was all ears.
Jim didn't disappoint, with a fantastic speech about his history with Four Seasons, and the many ways he built one of the most respected brands, thru his passion for company culture and developing his people. He captivated us with some fantastic stories and lots of take away quotes. Here are a few:
1. Mantra - 3P (People Product then Profit)
2. Train people on the small details a thousand times and the big things take care of themselves
3. Any time you stay at a Four Seasons, ask the manager to attend the morning staff huddle. They love to have guests visit and see culture and accountability in action. One part of the huddle sounds interesting, when they ask everyone "What mistakes did you make yesterday, and what did you do about it?"
4. "Culture is what employees do when you are not watching"
5. It's about Trust
6. My favorite was Jim's story and quote from Herb Kelleher, the Chairman of Southwest Airlines, on what was their secret weapon was. "It's our culture and people - Our competitors could copy everything in our strategy tomorrow but can never copy our culture and they know it"
Jim wrapped up his talk by giving away 7 nights at the Four Seasons in Bora Bora @ $1800 per night. It was a software developer from Norway who won, and when asked who we would take with him on the trip, the guys eyes popped open and he said "I don't know, I don't have a girlfriend!"

Saturday, April 21, 2012

Viva Las Vegas

This week, Shawn and I were in Vegas for an Internet show. We've attended many shows over the years, and this is one of the best ones - great learning events, incredible speakers, ridiculous food (that's Chicken and Waffles Shawn is about to dive into) and the best rockin' pool side parties with open bar.

BUT - it's kind of weird taking over an entire resort in Vegas and 98% of the attendees are guys. Now, I'm very happily married but hanging with thousands for computer dudes for 5 days in Vegas just seems wrong.


Friday, April 20, 2012

Moments of Truth

Today we pay tribute to our Sesame Street learning theme with a wrap up party. This was our last quarter theme that was focused around "Learning" and all our departments had a chance to trumpet their achievements. Some notable presentations came from Purchasing, Sales and our Drivers.

First, Purchasing - they did a great job over the past 3 months training other departments on how many of our internal processes work. Feedback was that these training sessions will save hundreds of working hours by other staff who now felt more informed.

Second - the drivers invited the sales people to "ride along" for a day and see how orders are delivered and customers were handled face to face. Feedback was a new level of appreciation for the hard work the drivers do each day, and how much the customers love their drivers. Now let's see if we can get a few drivers to come answer phones.
Our party continued with a giant spread of Mexican food followed by the roll out of our next quarter theme - Disney and our Moments of Truth (MOT). MOT for Costless is anything we do that touches or is seen by a customer, from an invoice to a truck to even the way a box is packed. We will be focused on all the MOT details, just like Disney does so well.

Finally we wrapped up our Theme Party with a private Laser Tag event. What's better than blasting a few coworkers on a Friday after work? It was a great turn out and a ton of fun.


Thursday, April 19, 2012

As a student of happiness, I am always seeking out new inspirational books. About a year ago my wife gave me the book 1000 Awesome Things. I have used the book and subsequently the website and blog for many quotes and bite size moments of happy reflection.

It was interesting to read the article that Neil Pasricha, the creator of 1000 Awesome Things, will be shutting down his blog. He has an incredible story that is worth learning more about.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Study finds Canadians amongst the happiest in the world

This headline really caught my attention! I consider myself a "student of happiness" and am always on the lookout for articles and studies on happiness. There is too much bad news in the media and I wish there was an all good news station (but don't get me started!)
Have a read on this great study and conference with the UN and the country of Bhutan. Can you guess what country is the happiest and where Canada placed.
An interesting side note - our sister company is the Danish word for Happiness :-)