Business community comes out for cocktail
The Stanstead Employability Committee held its third annual “Business Community Cocktail” last night in the VIP lounge of the Pat Burns Arena. The event was in full swing soon after it started because of a special game organized for the occasion. The almost fifty business people attending had to move from table to table in a sort of ‘speeddating’ format to discuss specific questions related to employment. “The ques- tions asked were related to the needs that we determined after sending surveys out to the business community,” explained committee member Debbie Bishop.
“Why did you choose Stanstead to operate a business?” was the first question that the participants took turns discussing in groups of about six or seven. The other questions had the participants discussing tricks to hire personnel, employee training, keeping and motivating personnel, and essential qualities in personnel.
Mayor Philippe Dutil, who is on the committee, was very pleased with the turnout and was looking forward to hear the guest speaker of the event: renowned business woman from Magog, Renelle Anctil. “Mrs. Anctil wanted to take a tour of the town before speaking so our development officer, Mrs. Lajeunesse McKay, brought her around,” said the mayor.
Stanstead developer Ali Ettehadieh was attending the event for the first time. “I’m amazed at the number of people here. It’s very encouraging and it gives me hope that we’ll get there. It’s a very good initiative,” commented Mr. Ettehadieh.
The owner of the groupe Deziel, Daniel Varin, was also a newcomer to the event. “It’s nice to get to know other business people. The questions were very interesting and there have been good discussions. There is always give and take in business but if they encourage us like this, we’ll come,” he said.
Stanstead Development Officer Ms. Lajeunesse McKay introduced the guest
speaker, Ms. Anctil, once all the questions had been dealt with. “She is only the fourth woman in the last twenty-five years to win the Merite Estrien,” said Ms. Lajeunesse McKay in her lengthy and well-deserved introduction. “It’s a shame there’s nothing left to say,” joked Ms. Anctil when she got up to speak. Ms. Anctil went on to tell the fascinating story of her family’s challenging rise in the field of hardware (she owns several Rona franchises), sharing her tricks for success along the way.
“The goal of the night is for business people and service providers to connect and then stay in contact,” said Helene Hamel who was animating the event. To make that easier the Employability Committee now has a new website for local business people at www.wix.com/comemstanstead/emploi. “Our hope is that the business people will get to know who the service people are that can help them with employment issues, like the members of the committee from the CLD or the CJE. And they might realize that they’re not alone when it comes to these issues,” added Ms. Bishop.
Rona store owner and Fire Chief Jean Fluet (who has hair for now, see article Firefighters go bald) listening to Ms. Anctil speak at the event.
Award-winning business woman, Renelle Anctil, was the guest speaker at the Business Community cocktail last night.