Who's Who Women in Business


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a new year is a time of reflection, when people are mindful of the possibilities for the year ahead. That's why SHEday has been held in January since the inaugural event in 2015. This January, a diverse group of 1,100 people at RBC Convention Centre Winnipeg participated in a day that was as inspiring for organizers and speakers as it was for the audience. "I was definitely inspired by the women who spoke and presented their stories on stage during the day, but I was also taken aback by the warmth and enthusiasm of the women in the audience," says Colleen Dyck, founder of The Great GORP Project. "The electricity in the room was palpable and downright infectious! Every conversation I had was absolutely uplifting. I was reminded just how much we all really have in common, despite the vast differences in our career paths, backgrounds and talents." Invited to speak on a millennial panel, Dyck was frank about her insecurities as a young entrepreneur, particularly when she started her company, which makes high- quality energy bars. And she appreciates other woman who are open about their fears and vulnerabilities. "It helps me put my own problems in perspective. It's so easy to unwittingly hold yourself up to ideals by comparing yourself with others, and very often it's not even a true picture of the other person." Women's Enterprise Centre of Manitoba CEO Sandra Altner says women conduct business differently than their male counterparts, and they bring a different perspective to the table. She notes that many SHEday sponsors are large corporations or businesses owned by men who recognize the importance of supporting diversity. More businesses are discovering that promoting and valuing women is good for the bottom line and, increasingly, their customers are more aware of that fact, as well. "What that says about a company … is that a different perspective is valued and that therefore this is likely to be a better company to invest in, or a better company to work with, or a better foundation for a better relationship down the road." At Dyck's Niverville-based business, moms of school-age kids work shifts that fit around the school bus schedule, so they don't have to worry about day care. It's an accommodation that represents an evolution, not only in the workplace, but in the ways families operate, she says. "The more employers who are willing to consider the issues and think outside the box the better off we will be as a society. We have to do this together. I think many companies are already on the right track — we can't forget to acknowledge and celebrate the wins along the way." ❚ VOLUME 3, MAY 2017 PUBLISHER Bob Cox MANAGER OF NICHE PRODUCTS Barb Borden Barb.Borden@freepress.mb.ca EDITOR Pat St. Germain pstgermain@mail.com WRITERS Bob Armstrong Michelle Bailey Sharon Chisvin Sherry Kaniuga Wendy King Janine LeGal Andrea Geary Kristin Marand Jennifer McFee Holli Moncrieff Pat St. Germain Jim Timlick PHOTOGRAPHY Darcy Finley Michael Roberts, Duality Photographic DESIGN Jane Chartrand View online at winnipegfreepress.com/ publications who's who special business edition women Women at Work DIVERSITY DRIVES WORKPLACE AND SOCIAL EVOLUTION The Great GORP Project founder Colleen Dyck was among the speakers who inspired participants at SHEday this January. Photo by Darcy Finley

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