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BWA Quarterly Networking Event Garners Premier’s Attention And The Hon. Minister Of Labour Laurie Scott!

The Hon. Minister of Labour Laurie Scott poses with Mike Baker Executive Director of the BWA at the latest Quarterly Networking Event at Humber College.

The Hon. Minister of Labour Laurie Scott poses with Mike Baker Executive Director of the BWA at the latest Quarterly Networking Event at Humber College.

On Thursday, March 28th, the BWA hosted it’s annual Spring Quarterly Networking Event at Humber College School of Trades Woodworking Center.

Many BWA members have experienced surprise visits from the MOL with mixed feelings. While we all want to ensure the health and safety for our employees, it can’t hurt to build better bridges between BWA members and the MOL who focus on safety.

Ron Landry, Provincial Coordinator at the Ministry of Labour’s Industrial Health and Safety Program brought a plethora of information for manufacturers to learn about including – what are the most common infractions, Lost Time Injury rates (LTI’s), past and on-going MOL reports, what companies can do if they receive an order & lots of related MOL resources guides, fact sheets, and reports. As well as sharing 2019-2020 provincial – initiatives outlining the focus area, sector, and phase for the rollout of these initiatives.

Did you know there is an online tool to find Ontario workplace health and safely statistics on business? Ron shared with the group: guides, tools, resources, checklists, and training business owners have access to. Make sure to attend these Quarterly Networking Events to capture all the details.

Following Ron’s presentation, Rob Halverson from Quinn Global provided examples of how various types of glue products and application methods can affect employees and efficiency of transfer of the product. What is the transfer efficiency in your shop? Are the methods being used the most optimal for your employees’ health?

The Cost to Buy. The Case to Save.

Frédéric Perrin (Above) reviewing with the crowd the BWA’s Buying Group at the Quarterly Networking Event.

Frédéric Perrin (Above) reviewing with the crowd the BWA’s Buying Group at the Quarterly Networking Event.

Each week that passes, more manufacturers are preparing and sending in their purchase volumes data to the BWA. Frédéric Perrin, VP of Le Groupe 4CB flew all the way in from Montreal to extrapolate on the data collected thus far.

The BWA Buying Group is an industry-driven initiative that will continue to generate positive results as more companies participate. The initial phase of development of this Group will focus on Wood Sector specific categories, then has the potential to expand to new categories like Office/Shop supplies, Software, Services, etc.

Purchasing data/information is never distributed to any company or person. BWA staff do not see this data & manufacturer information is protected with an NDA agreement.

To date, the BWA in cooperation with Frédéric of Le Groupe 4CB has collected information that represents 19 categories and an aggregate total of purchasing power in the millions. All sectors of the wood industry are encouraged to contact the BWA to send in their purchase volumes. It’s a quick and easy process to be involved. Contact the BWA to find out how to participate.

A Health Check on Benefit Fees

“…we saved over 20%” – BWA Member

JP Coronado (Above) reviewing with the crowd the BWA’s Benefit Plan at the Quarterly Networking Event.

JP Coronado (Above) reviewing with the crowd the BWA’s Benefit Plan at the Quarterly Networking Event.

When service providers help you select a benefit plan for your company, are there hidden costs that are not well disclosed? JP Coronado representing the BWA Benefit Plan provided a case study on how this game-changing benefit plan is different than the rest. If you’re a company with 1-2 years of experience with a benefit provider, you may have experienced teaser rates in the first year, and noticed rates increased after that.

“When we switched to this benefit plan JP is talking about – we saved over 20%, and we’re very happy with it!” – BWA member exclaimed at the Quarterly Event, March 28th.

JP presented the impact of hidden fees and key ratios that providers utilize that greatly affect the efficiency of dollars spent on employee benefits. If you think its time to do a health check on your company’s benefit plan and find out what key ratios can save you money, contact the BWA to learn more.

Online & how your company is seen.

Chris Herbert (Above) reviews digital marketing at the Quarterly Networking Event.

Chris Herbert (Above) reviews digital marketing at the Quarterly Networking Event.

In the digital era, a company’s online presence can make greatly affect the perception of a company. How they’re perceived; how they’re rated; what they present; and the impact that has on viewers. Chris Herbert, Managing Partner at Mi6 Agency, identified some key areas to recognize.

What is the customer experience when they navigate your website? Is your online presence attracting the audience you want? How does your customer traffic filter through your company, and does it get to the right staff?

To finish off the day Humber College provided a tour of their woodworking facility.

If you would like more information on BWA, please contact:

Mike Baker
Executive Director
1-226-668-5455
[email protected]

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BWA Sales Management Training Event attracts Leadership

BWA’s S.M.T.E. attracts Leadership to Milton

Thursday, February 7th the BWA hosted its Sales Management Training Event with award-winning sales trainer and President of Sandler Training Milton, Andrew Wall.

Though the weather was challenging, many attendees made the trek to explore the multi-faceted aspects of leading sales teams.

Do your sales teams have best practices systems in place? What measurables are you currently using? How is performance evaluated and what are its comparables? Andrew Wall provided a hands-on, interactive training session that explored these topics and much more.

Andrew Wall leading breakout sessions with a hands-on approach to learning

“As we get busy, it’s easy to skip a lot of those details. The process is important, no matter how busy you get” – Sales Manager attendee from the event.

Systematizing your sales processes leads to consistency and predictability. The training event also incorporated breakout sessions to put into practice methods learned further imprinting the key points.

This event kicked off with members identifying their challenges in their company and moved forward to uncovering key indicators that can affect desired goals. In the end, BWA members were able to complete the day with a new insight and tools to take back with leading and managing sales teams.

Andrew Wall showing Sales Managers scientific insight on sales teams

Andrew Wall showing Sales Managers scientific insight on sales teams.

Sandler Training has approximately 270 training centres in more than 27 countries worldwide. Andrew Wall has built a highly successful career in sales and management and now focuses on training and mentoring companies and individuals to be successful.

If you would like more information about this event and the BWA, please contact:
Tara Davey
Program Administrator
Bluewater Wood Alliance
e: [email protected]

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BWA members movin’ full steam to Lean.

BWA Lean Road Map Training Event packed the room with manufacturers eager to learn.

On January 24th, 2019 the BWA hosted it’s Lean Road Map Training Event at Kitchener’s premier business hub EDC’s Export Growth Hub at Catalyst 137. 

It was as recent as last December the BWA held it’s Lean Training to a packed room of manufacturers. And by popular demand, the event was brought back to train an even deeper reach of manufacturers staff in all areas of their business. Lean thinking focuses on driving down waste in all areas of manufacturing; the seen waste and the unseen waste cannot hide with Lean implementation.

Throughout the event, Lean Trainers Brad Cairnes (Center of Lean Learning) and Sepp Gmeiner (Lignum Consulting), showcased to their audience an interactive presentation on the fundamentals of lean and provided examples of how it benefits their businesses. Brad Cairnes also brought video footage of top performing wood manufacturing facilities showcasing the power of lean thinking.

“This is awesome, bad @ss, whatever you want to call it!” – Staff Member introduced to Lean.

What areas of your business have you not yet considered that have waste? What areas could you tap into to drive down waste? What do you consider waste? Be ready for the next Lean Training announcements to not miss the next opportunity. Stay up to date by subscribing to our mailing list.

BWA members during the full day Lean Road Map Training Event held at EDC’s Export Growth Hub – Catalyst 137, Kitchener.

For those who want to continue the learning experience and focus deeper on their shops, the BWA has worked with Brad, Lynn & Sepp to facilitate such a request. Many companies are moving forward with the next steps of the BWA Lean Program.

To learn more about the BWA Lean Program and more details about this event, please contact Ryan Tabone at Email: [email protected]

Season’s Greetings from Bluewater Wood Alliance

Season’s Greetings to everyone!

As we look back over the year for the BWA, we have much to be thankful for and proud of. New initiatives have been launched to help our industry, and our membership continues to grow.

Some highlights of 2018 include:

  • Membership now approaching 130 member companies
  • Export development project to IMM Show Cologne, Germany
  • 4 Quarterly Networking Events
  • Launch of the BWA Lean Road Map program with 3 public training events and in-house projects
  • Launch of the BWA Sandler Sales training program with 3 public training events and in-house projects
  • 2 Plant Tour Kaizen events
  • Launch of the BWA Benefit Plant
  • Total event attendance of over 500 BWA members and partners
  • Launch of the BWA Buying Group to be formalized in 2019
  • Hiring of BWA Program Coordinator/Advisor to better serve members
  • BWA speaker at Wood Best Practices Forum, Vancouver BC
  • BWA panelist at TCI International Cluster Conference, Toronto
  • Partnerships with BC Wood, Canada Wood, NGen Canada, MNRF, and NRCan
  • Committed volunteer board of directors providing governance and oversight

I am sure I may have missed something, but we are excited about the future and 2019 promises to be an even better year to serve the value-added wood industry in southwestern Ontario.

Finally, thank you to our devoted members and partners who continue to support the BWA cluster!
Merry Xmas and happy new year!

Best regards,
Mike Baker, Executive Director

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BWA Lean Road Map Features: Highway to Throughput.

Sepp Gmeiner & Brad Cairns highlight Lean Manufacturing with an in-depth look.

Thursday, December 6th Bluewater Wood Alliance manufacturers assembled at the Kitchener Public Library for in-depth training on Lean Manufacturing.

What does Toyota, Lean and Woodworking all have in common? For one full day, the BWA brought in Lean Training Specialists Sepp Gmeiner of Lignum Consulting & Brad Cairns of Center for Lean Learning & Best Damn Doors spent the day training in detail how the principles of Lean relate to wood manufacturing.

A recurrent reaction to Lean is “I don’t think it can work for me, I’m too custom.” But as the training unfolds throughout the day, the principles showcase that they can apply in all areas of the business. From the office to factory – from kitchen cabinet makers, millwork, office furniture & moldings – Lean works everywhere.

Brad Cairns showcases a clip from one of his employees (Best Damn Doors) giving feedback on Lean Principles in the workplace.

 

“When you follow these behaviors we’re gonna create a great (work) culture”. – Best Damn Doors (employee)

The first half of the event is centric around a deeper understanding of the principles with real-world examples, and then those principles are put into action and proven in real time in a workshop.

Sepp Gmeiner leads the workshop on real-time measured examples.

Fundamental to the Bluewater Wood Alliance is our mission to raise the powers of innovation of our members and increase their know how. The BWA partnering with Brad Cairns and Sepp Gmeiner has built an empowering training platform where manufacturers of wood products and suppliers are gaining an important and game-changing platform to increase efficiencies and drive down waste.

For those who want to continue the learning experience and focus deeper on their shops, the BWA has worked with Brad, Lynn & Sepp to facilitate such a request. Many companies are moving forward with the next steps of the BWA Lean Program.

To learn more about the BWA Lean Program and more details about this event, please contact Ryan Tabone at Email: [email protected]

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BWA Sandler Training Milton – Sales Training Event!

Too much time with prospects without certainty they will become clients?

Customers & prospects over scrutinize price & not seeing your true, high quality value?

Lacking a system for you or your sales teams?

On October 17th, 2018 the BWA Sandler Training Milton – Sales Training Event hosted a full day of training for our members with Andrew Wall – President of Sandler Training Milton.

The day began with Andrew identifying the current challenges of each member to tie in with the lessons to be learned. Often the way we approach, communicate and conduct our sales transactions is a key component to successful sales. The event included techniques to cultivate new behaviors and sales strategies that make for lasting success.

Following the learning sprints, the groups were divided up into workshops to review, discuss, and actively working out methods taught. The interactive learning methods were very positively received.

Members were receiving a lot of valuable sales strategies and methods to employ in their businesses throughout the day. Roundtable discussions also were beneficial in helping members problem-solve common issues shared and helped develop new methods and systems of approach in sales.

BWA Sandler Training Milton Sales Training – October 17th, 2018

Upcoming Sales Events…

As part of the BWA’s ongoing program initiatives, we are working towards more sales training events, and an upcoming Sales Manager training event on February 7, 2019, from 9:00 am – 4:00 pm.  Click here to learn more. Stay tuned for more dates in the coming months.

If you would like more information about this event and the BWA, please contact:
Ryan Tabone
Program Coordinator & Advisor
Bluewater Wood Alliance
e: [email protected]


About BWA – Sandler Training Milton – Sales Program

Sandler Training system has over 250 training locations recognized in over 27 countries around the world. Through the partnership with the Bluewater Wood Alliance, the BWA can provide specialized training to woodworking businesses – raising their competitive edge, increasing their know-how and increasing internalization.

Andrew is an award-winning sales professional with decades of experience in sales and sales management. He has managed hundreds of millions of dollars’ worth in sales in the energy markets and now focuses on mentoring and training sales professionals. Read Andrews article in the BWA Pro’s Corner on how to create a One Page Strategic Plan and help ensure employees understand your business strategy.

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TCI Network Global Conference on Clusters in Toronto Oct 16-18!

Mike Baker, Executive Director of the Bluewater Wood Alliance (BWA), is very excited to be a panelist with other global cluster leaders at the TCI Network Global Conference on Clusters in Toronto Oct 16-18!

Mike will be speaking on day 3 (Oct 18) along with representatives from Denmark, Sweden, and France on the topic of Raising competitiveness through models of cluster organizations.

Details of the day can be seen here: https://www.tci2018.org/day-3/

The Bluewater Wood Alliance continues to be an industry driven cluster model that continues to get international attention! That is because we are the only true managed cluster for the wood industry in Canada!