Environmentally & Socially Responsible Event Planning * Consulting * Staffing * Catering

What our clients say about us...

  • “You have extraordinary attention to detail. You took care of the little things (like the place setting utensil twine and the food platter you sent up to the girls’ room) that we didn’t even think about. We’d be able to tell future clients to feel confident that everything will be taken of with style, even the things they may not have thought of beforehand.” – John, on his wedding

Thursday, February 19, 2009

Recession? What Recession!?


Being an entrepreneur is ridiculously hard. My (strange) analogy of how difficult it is can be put this way:

If life were a river of beautiful experiences in which the you either swim or let the current take you, being an entrepreneur is like forging your own stream. Now during these times perhaps its like shaping that stream with a spoon.

That being said, this is no time to have one's head in the sand or just blindly soldier on. Yes it is truly hard to be and live as an entrepreneur in this financially unstable climate. YET, if it wasn't hard why would be entrepreneurs in the first place? Building your own business should never ever be easy, if it were I'd be terribly worried.

Perhaps there is a recession going on right now, perhaps not, or perhaps its just a slow slide or recovery. I've heard from early optimistic financial forecasts that the recession should come to a close around July. The key thing here is to be able to separate the fact from fiction and neither be swayed by the hype or hysteria. The bottom line is, this too, shall pass. Recessions do, on occasion, occur as the downward cycle of any economy.

During the last two months the office I worked in did extremely well and several people were making a killing in sales. This wasn't just selling shoes, this was real estate. This was clearly in contrast to the doom and gloom that the newspapers and media spun. So what gives? There are indeed people making a money (if not a lot of money) and profiting from this shift in the financial landscape. On top of that, financial analysist state that in a persons life time, they will face at least two recessions.

My first experience of this was in 1985 at age seven, during the big market crash. My dad took some advice from an accountant to invest in several homes, mere months from the market crash. Unfortunately nobody could predict the future. We all were effected by that in someway or form. Sure, I was seven, but in hindsight that still could be felt. Now even more so I have the power to shape how I roll with things. When I was seven all I could do is put on the blinders and focus on whats ahead of me. Ie. growing up

So this would be my second. I'm fully expecting and planning for a third.

So what do we do? We certainly cannot stick our heads in the sand and wait for it to blow over. As entrepreneurs our fat reserves are already lean as it is. We can also regress and put those blinders on and be nieve to the situation around us. This too is not an option. I believe that if an entrepreneur can survive, if not thrive in this recession then all the better. This is one of those defining times in which the all the featherweights run and go back to their day job.

Now more than ever its important to continue to invest in our networks and strengthen our bonds with current clients. We may not be able to help others by shelling out loads of cash to bail them out. But there is more than one way to help someone. There is strength in numbers and its during the hardest of times that trust and friendship are truest. By the sheer act of sharing the experience and doing whatever you can to help others, it can and does come back. Now more than ever this is not a time to count favours, or reserve that special contact for oneself.

Visualization is also key. If it means putting up a hokey picture of your dream home on some secluded island, then so be it. Look at it every day. To quote Robert Kiyosaki "Do-Be-Have". The key is to keep doing whats needed to be done, EVERY day. Galvinization only comes through having a clear and focused goal, regardless of the climate.

Check out free seminars hosted by Enterprise Toronto (Link HERE). Perhaps you already have all the information but, again there is strength in numbers, surrounding yourself with other entrepreneurs who are struggling is a great way to network and find out how you can help each other.

The bottom line is. Its not what you know, its who you know. (To be edited)

Awesome Person Spotlight: Veronica

his is a brief spotlight of some of the people who have been helping/or helped make Simplicity an awesome company.


I chose to write about Veronica because she is a shining example of the type of person that every company, group, or team needs. Imagine: at the end of the event, you and the team simply beat! Running a eight hour shift on your feet can just be sheer exhaustion and short of a shot of coffee of plenty of sugar, you have no idea how you'll survive the rest of the event. NOT for Veronica! Like a dancing dervish, as the close of the event draws near Veronica is all charged up and ready for more!

Veronica has been with us almost since the beginning. Starting with us since early 2007, she has quickly become a core member of Simplicity waitstaff and helped us campaign through the grueling and brisk half of 2007 and is still with with us as we branch off into our community development initiatives.

Quite frankly she is a blessing to our team at any event we do. Her bubbly personality and positive attitude is a fantastic salve for all of us at the end of the day. Unlike many of the staff Veronica seems to gain energy, and like a dynamo is able to inspire the rest of us to keep going till the end and even perhaps remind us of the fun of the event.

One of Ronnie's most endearing qualities is to be able to empathize and relate to others. For this and all the above I'm quite thankful for her sheer awesomeness.

As Simplicity develops and grows I look forward to helping Ronnie connect, continue to seek and define her path in life, whether it be teacher, dancer or as primer for community development. I certainly feel that she has a knack for adding to any community.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

"Being Cheap is not Cheap"

Working for various companies, I've seen a lot of different business and accounting styles. I often wonder if being completely and utterly stingy with every penny really makes a big difference...

Seeing both sides of the fences, I do believe that yes it can be quite effective in watching every penny. But I think in hindsight, the reality of the situation is that being so dramatic as to be called frugal, stingy, what really comes through is being called cheap. Cheapness is never a good thing, in any product, service, or business.

Perhaps the German's have it right, uncompromising quality. Everything from tanks, gliders, submarines, guns, to drafting equipment to the BMW. Its all done with precision and care, that comes with a price tag. Thus they are world renown for their quality and craftsmanship. In comparison, it sure must be great to mass produce lower quality goods, but in the end, your consumer will eventually be left wanting. Regardless of how affordable and cut-rate your services are.

If you're cheap, word does get around. Even worse if your employees get wind of it or witness it. Perhaps it can be said that "Cheapness is not cheap." (Now the new title of this entry.) The effect can be devastating on morale and hinder performance.

In relating this recent lesson to today's worldly economic status. I do recognize that financially the situation is not exactly positive but it is certainly not bleak. It is also certainly not just cause to conduct business as I have seen. Cheapness is not a one time incident. I believe it is a way of living, your choice of actions and decisions, and quite frankly and literally cheapens the overall interaction with clients.

But how do we define cheap? In reality it depends on the situation, but more over it depends on our own standards. What standards do I have for Simplicity? Certainly not cheap ones.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

What have we been up to lately?!

Hey all,

Its been a bit since my last post. Suffice to say we're getting the hang of the bloggy thing. We finally managed to hang up some pictures. Painting to follow!

Surprisingly the month of January has been a really good one for us. Generally its a time known for hibernation and being a snowbird seeking warmer climes. But Simplicity is much more resilient in the fresh start of 2009.

Early in January 2009 we helped bail out another staffing agency with a last minute gig and staffed a client appreciation show for a real estate team. Check out Nella Cucina on Bathurst. Its a dreamy place for people who love to be in the kitchen.

On the volunteering front, mid-January saw Simplicity catering Alpha II Alternative school's Open House. It was a fantastic turn out. Starting last year we've taken the opportunity to come in bi-weekly to cook with the students and give them more opportunity to explore and learn kitchen craft. Information on Alpha 2 can be found (Here) More volunteers to help create learning opportunities are certainly welcome!