Blogs list

Loren Kroeker - MNP LLP- Loren Kroeker

Federal Budget Highlights - Sponsored Article On Tuesday, March 22, 2016, the Honourable Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance, delivered the new Government of Canada’s first Federal Budget, Growing the Middle Class. According to Minister Morneau, “our plan will recapture the hope and optimism for the future that existed in previous generations, and put it to work for the next. Real change is not just about today or tomorrow. It is about revitalizing the economy in the years and decades to come, so that it works for the middle class and helps those working hard to join it.” Projecting a deficit of $29.4 billion in 2016-17 with a gradual decline to a deficit of $14.3 billion in 2020-21, Minister Morneau also announced the repeal of the balanced budget legislation enacted under the previous government. For the full document, click here To learn more, contact Loren Kroeker, CPA, CA, Senior Vice President, Tax, at 250.734.4330 or Loren.Kroeker@mnp.ca.  

Photo : Loren Kroeker March 30, 2016

Philip Aubry - Perley-Robertson Hill & McDougall LLP - Philip Aubry

Investor Crowdfunding Coming to Ontario - Sponsored Article The Ontario Securities Commission (“OSC”) announced last month (November 5, 2015) that it will join Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia in allowing businesses to participate in equity crowdfunding regulations.  Provided all necessary Ministerial approvals are obtained, investor crowdfunding will finally come into force in Ontario and other jurisdictions on January 25, 2016.   Although accredited investors have been allowed to participate in equity crowdfunding since 2013, the new regulations will allow all investors to participate, with restrictions on how much they can invest, as well as limits on what the company can raise in order to limit risk. Under the OSC’s new rules, businesses will be required to offer such equity stakes through registered crowdfunding platforms.  These crowdfunding platforms will be responsible for background checks and other due diligence on companies and investors. Other key conditions of the new OSC regulations include offering non-complex securities such as common shares and non-convertible preference shares as well as issuers will be required to complete a Risk Acknowledgement Form and an offering document.  In addition, businesses will have a limit of $1,500,000 in capital they can raise and investment limits for investors will be $2,500 per investment and in Ontario, $10,000 total in a calendar year per investor.  Accredited investors are limited to $25,000 per investment and in Ontario, $50,000 in total per calendar year. Although crowdfunding has many benefits including faster access to funding for start-ups and businesses, there are a few issues a business should consider prior to using the crowdfunding exemption. Some of the…

Photo : Philip Aubry January 07, 2016

Karin Pagé - Perley-Robertson Hill & McDougall LLP - Karin Page

My employee suffers from a disability: What do I need to know? - Sponsored Article According to the Canadian Life and Health Insurers Association, an average of 1 in 3 people will be disabled for 90 days or more at least once before they reach age 65. As an employer, you have an obligation to accommodate any employee suffering from a disability and any medical leave associated with such disability – to the point of undue hardship. But, what does that actually mean?  There is no simple answer to that question as such will be dependent on the particular employee’s circumstances, and those of the employer, taking into account cost and health and safety considerations, if any. The duty to accommodate includes both procedural and substantive elements. Therefore, an employer must demonstrate that it took steps to explore and assess accommodation options for the particular employee. Your employees must also cooperate in the accommodation process, including: informing you of any accommodation needs; answering questions and providing information regarding relevant restrictions or limitations, including information from health care professionals, where appropriate; participating in discussions regarding possible accommodation solutions; and meeting agreed-upon performance and job standards once accommodation is provided. At various stages of their disability, an employee may require modification to their work schedule, work environment, and/or responsibilities. An employer must consider whether such accommodation is feasible, without causing undue hardship. Naturally, what may cause undue hardship to one employer may not be for another. An important factor is the size of the organization. While a large organization may be in a position to transfer an employee to another…

Photo : Karin Pagé May 16, 2016

Dale Barrett - Barrett Tax Law Firm - Dale Barrett

The Lifetime Capital Gains Exemption: Plan ahead - Sponsored Article People often ask me about the Lifetime Capital Gains Exemption (the “LCGE”), which for the 2015 tax year is $813,600, and many just assume that any capital gain can be covered under the exemption.   Actually, the LCGE allows one to dispose of Qualified Farm Property, Qualified Fishing Property, or shares of a Qualified Small Business Corporation and not pay any capital gains tax on the first $813,600.  And as the wording suggests, there are qualifications. In general only ½ of a capital gain is taxable, and with the LCGE, the 2nd half can be non-taxable too up to $406,800 (in 2015) – by virtue of a capital gains deduction. With many people either actively in the process of selling their business or planning for this eventuality, there is a great deal of confusion as to what kinds of sales would be subject to the LCGE, and thus many people don’t take the necessary steps to protect themselves, which can cost hundreds of thousands of dollars. The Qualified Small Business Corporation A gain from the sale of shares of a Canadian controlled private corporation can qualify for the LCGE if a number of conditions are satisfied; one of those being that at the time of sale, all or substantially all of the assets (90%+) of the business are used principally in an active business carried on primarily in Canada.    What this means in practice is that the in the course of an audit the LCGE could be at risk if the Canada…

Photo : Dale Barrett November 23, 2015

Gregory Sanders - Perley Robertson Hill & Mcdougall LLP - Gregory Sanders

The Use of Trusts - Sponsored Article Trusts have been around for six centuries.  In that timespan, their uses have evolved as circumstances have changed. Trusts were first used to distinguish between legal ownership and beneficial ownership.  Trusts evolved out of this environment to find equitable solutions to difficult problems.  Today the basic concept of a trust remains the same.  It allows one person to have legal ownership while another person has beneficial ownership. The use of trusts has evolved dramatically over the years and varies depending on the nature of the jurisdiction in which they are used.  For example, jurisdictions that have complex tax systems have developed trusts in order to provide for tax and estate planning.  However, in jurisdictions where tax is not a motivating factor, the use of trusts is a key ingredient in asset preservation. Trusts are not a static environment.  As circumstances change, the use of trusts in different jurisdictions continues to evolve and new and inventive uses can be applied. It has not been long since Leona Helmsley, heir to the hotel chain, decided that she needed to ensure her pets were cared for following her death and wanted to provide a fund for their care.  What better way to do that than through the use of a trust.  But how can you have a trust where the only beneficiary is a pet and, even more thoughtworthy, how can you ensure that the trustee use the proceeds of that trust for the benefit of the pets?  It’s not as if the pet can initiate…

Photo : Gregory Sanders April 18, 2016

Alicia S. Natividad - ASN Law Professional Corporation - Alicia S. Natividad

Are you Protected as a Director? - Sponsored Article Directors for profit or not-for-profit corporations may be exposed personally for certain statutory liabilities, subject to the availability of a due diligence defence.  Directors can protect themselves from liability by getting directors’ liability insurance and getting an indemnification from the corporation. Section 124(1) of the Canada Business Corporations Act (CBCA) sets out that a for-profit corporation may indemnify a director or former director, an officer or former officer of a corporation, or an individual who acts or has acted at a corporation’s request as a director or officer, or an individual acting in that capacity, against all costs, charges and expenses, including an amount paid to settle an action or to satisfy a judgement which was reasonably incurred by an individual in any civil, criminal, administrative, investigative, or other proceeding because of such individual’s association with a corporation.  Similar provisions are found in section 136(1) of the Ontario Business Corporations Act (OBCA), section 80 of the Corporations Act for Ontario not-for-profit corporations, and section 151(1) of the Canada Not-For-Profit Corporations Act. Essentially, an indemnification is a contractual arrangement or an agreement given by a profit or not-for-profit corporation to a director or officer of such corporation indemnifying the individual from having to pay any damages, costs, or expenses arising from any civil, criminal, administrative, investigative, or other proceeding by reason of such person being a director or officer of such corporation. An indemnification agreement may not be necessary if a by-law of a corporation includes an indemnification of a director or officer of…

Photo : Alicia S.  Natividad May 16, 2016

Shann Bosnell - TUC Managed IT Solutions - Shann Bosnell

When Lightning Strikes – Why Business Continuity is Critical! - Sponsored Article On August 20, 2015 a Google Data Center serving European customers in Belgium experienced something out of the ordinary.  It was struck by lightning.  Not once.  Not twice.  But 4 times in succession.  Whoever said “lightning does not strike the same place twice” was sorely mistaken.  Although the data center systems were built to redundancy, the lightning still ended up causing damage.  That damage resulted in the loss of customer data that is not recoverable.  In the grand scheme of things, the data lost accounted for only 0.000001% of a percent of all the data stored.  Sounds like a small percentage, right? But, what if you were one of the companies whose data was affected? What if that data was critical to your business?  I’m thinking you wouldn’t care about percentages. Statistically, data is far more secure and available in a data center than in nearly every businesses’ server room.  Ultimately, most companies don’t have the capital and experience to build a data center to match a professional facility.  But, what the example above has shown, is that even massive data centers provided by companies like Google are still susceptible to failure and disaster.  Most people think that because they move their solutions and data “to the cloud” they don’t have to worry about data loss.  Statistically speaking, moving to hosted solutions absolutely helps ensure data availability and backup, yet no solution is perfect.  Despite the Google example above, not all failures happen due to natural disasters.  What’s worse than a tornado or…

Photo : Shann Bosnell September 14, 2015

Lorraine Mastersmith - Perley-Robertson Hill & McDougall LLP - Lorraine Mastersmith

“SAFE” Capital Raising for Emerging Companies - Sponsored Article One of the biggest challenges facing emerging growth companies is raising capital to fund growth. Depending on the stage of the company’s growth, funding can come from a myriad of sources, from friends & family, angel investors, government programs, venture capital and private equity through to accessing the public markets. In the early stages of pre-revenue product development, establishing a value for the company at which to price equity investments can be difficult. To facilitate access to capital in this early stage, a relatively new alternative that is gaining in popularity is the Simple Agreement for Future Equity or “SAFE”. First introduced in late 2013 by the Y Combinator accelerator in Silicon Valley, the SAFE (followed by a similar agreement dubbed the “Keep It Simple Security” (“KISS”) by another accelerator, 500 Startups in mid-2014) presents start-up companies with an alternative to equity or convertible debt financing. These documents are short (usually only 5 pages) and flexible agreements, designed to be simple to understand, negotiate and administer. In exchange for providing cash to the company, investors obtain a contractual right to receive the company’s equity at a future date, at a price to be determined at that later date. Similar to convertible debt or debentures, this alternative is a quick and relatively simple way to provide companies with cash in exchange for a promise of future equity, with a significant difference in that these instruments typically do not accrue interest and do not have stated maturity dates. The SAFE (or KISS) is essentially an…

Photo : Lorraine Mastersmith September 14, 2015

Solomon Gold - Perley-Robertson Hill & McDougall LLP - Solomon Gold

What Information Does an Applicant Have to Include When Filing A Patent Application? - Sponsored Content You’ve decided that you want to file a patent application for your invention.  What information about the invention do you have to disclose in your application? The Canadian Patent Act states that an application must correctly and fully describe the invention and its operation or use as contemplated by the inventor.  To meet this requirement, the application will include a written description of the invention, supported by drawings, where appropriate.  The application will also include at least one claim which defines the scope of the applicant’s invention.  Care is usually taken when consulting with a patent professional to craft claims that best capture the invention by including components that define the invention while at the same time differentiate from what has come before.  While the scope of the claims has traditionally been seen as the most important part of the application, courts in Canada and in the United States have recently been considering what constitutes an adequate description as well. A patent is often thought of as a bargain between an applicant and the government granting the patent.  In exchange for the applicant’s disclosure of the invention in the application, the government grants a patent for an invention meeting criteria for patentability, the patent giving the patentee exclusivity in what it has claimed for the term of the patent.  The application will be published eighteen months following filing, and the description must be sufficient to enable anyone to practice the invention once the period of exclusivity expires. Therefore, what is set out in…

Photo : Solomon Gold August 14, 2015

Warren Creates - Perley-Robertson Hill & McDougall LLP - Warren Creates

Federal Express: New Immigration Program, One Year In - Sponsored Article On 1 January 2015, the federal government launched a revamped ‘Express Entry’ system for economic immigration to Canada. Before this new program, potential economic immigrants to Canada followed a straightforward application process with a predictable outcome. So long as an applicant met the qualifying criteria, included the right documents, and applied before the yearly application quota was met, the application would eventually be approved. Though the wait was often very long, each applicant was ensured an eventual decision on their application. The new system is designed to eliminate backlog and ensure swifter processing times. Under the new system, each prospective economic immigrant fills out an online profile. Once complete, the electronic database assigns a points total based on a “Comprehensive Ranking System”. Points are awarded for factors such as Canadian work experience, education, and language skills. A profile will only remain in the system for 12 months, after which it is removed and the individual must reapply. Candidates who meet the requirements of one of the four federal Express Entry programs are accepted into the Express Entry Pool. From this pool, the federal government periodically picks the top-ranked candidates and invites them to pay the processing fee and submit a formal application for permanent residence. Ontario Express Entry In June 2015 the Ontario government launched two Express Entry streams under the Ontario Immigrant Nominee Program (OINP). These streams allow the province to nominate candidates from the federal Express Entry pool who meet certain education, skilled work experience, and language ability standards and who…

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Photo : Warren  Creates January 18, 2016

Michael Citrome - Barrett Tax Law Firm - Michael Citrome

Bad Debt? Could Be Worse - Sponsored Article The Income Tax Act is the Federal legislation that governs income tax in Canada. It’s a big, complex piece of legislation that is constantly being updated, not in the least because it is one of the government’s most important tools for steering Canada’s economy. Want Canadians to save for their retirement, buy homes or replace their computers? The Income Tax Act is there to promote it. Investing? Know Your Rights  One of the policy objectives of the Income Tax Act has historically been to encourage Canadians to invest in small business. The lifetime capital gains exemption for small business corporations is a well-known example of the Income Tax Act making it possible to profit from the sale of your business to the tune of over $800,000 of tax-free capital gains. But what about the dark side of business investments – when you lose money? The Income Tax Act has created a special category of loss, called an Allowable Business Investment Loss or ABIL (pronounced like “able”), that makes the loss of certain investments a little more bearable, if you fit into the category.  Not All Losses Created Equal So first of all, what’s a loss? Logically, you’d think it means the opposite of income. But in Income Tax, there are different kinds of income, and so there are also different kinds of losses. Most investments, when you profit, give rise to a capital gain. Capital gains are treated differently from other forms of income. For one thing, unlike ordinary business income, generally only…

Photo : Michael  Citrome October 12, 2015

David Lowdon - Perley-Robertson Hill & McDougall LLP - David Lowdon

Better Capital Raising Opportunities for Small Businesses and Start-ups - Sponsored Article A New Family, Friends and Business Associates Exemption for Ontario The first source of funding for many small businesses or start-ups is the owner’s network of family, friends and business associates.  While other jurisdictions have a prospectus exemption catering to this fundraising opportunity, for several years Ontario has not. The Ontario Securities Commission (“OSC”) recently announced a new prospectus exemption for investments by family, friends and business associates (the “FFBA Exemption”).  The FFBA exemption came into effect on May 5, 2015. The FFBA Exemption recognizes that existing networks of family, friends and business associates may be the most cost-efficient way for early stage companies to raise capital without disclosure requirements or intermediary involvement.  It will likely broaden access to capital beyond what is currently available under the existing Private Issuer exemption and it replaces Ontario’s much narrower Founder, Control Person and Family Exemption.  It will also increase investment opportunities for investors who are closely related to the corporation but who would not have qualified under previously existing exemptions. The FFBA Exemption introduces two new requirements.  First, an issuer will be required to submit a report of exempt distribution to the OSC.  In addition, a risk acknowledgement form must be signed by both the investor and the issuer.   The FFBA Exemption has the following key conditions: It is available to both reporting and non-reporting issuers but is not available to investment funds. The exemption applies to a distribution of any security by an issuer or selling security holder. There is no limit on…

Photo : David  Lowdon June 12, 2015

Amy Alksnis - BrazeauSeller.LLP - Amy Alksnis

What is a Shareholders’ Agreement and Why Does My Company Need One? - Sponsored Article Clients often wonder why they need a shareholders’ agreement, particularly in a family-owned business where each of the shareholders are related to each other by blood or marriage. Entering into such an agreement is sometimes construed as a sign of distrust of the other shareholders, and met with a response such as “we’re family and we can work out any issues between ourselves; we don’t need an agreement for that.” However, just as no one enters into a marriage expecting it to end in divorce, very few business owners into a new business relationship expecting it to turn sour. The reality is that these types of relationships do not always progress as pleasantly as expected, and coming to an agreement during the “honeymoon” stage of a business relationship on how future events and potential disputes are to be dealt with may save the parties from bitter disputes and costly litigation down the road. Further, a shareholder agreement typically deals with inevitable life events, such as the death of a shareholder, and is not limited to the resolution of disputes that may or may not arise. A shareholders’ agreement is a contract between the shareholders of a corporation, setting out the rules for the management and operation of the corporation, and the rights and obligations of the shareholders in relation to one another. A shareholders’ agreement is not a one-size fits all document, and should be structured to fit the unique situation of a corporation and its shareholders. While there is no “standard” form…

Photo : Amy  Alksnis May 16, 2016

Barbara Sinclair - BrazeauSellerLLP - Barbara Sinclair

Cash-in-lieu of Parkland Amendments Approved By Planning Committee - Sponsored Article Ottawa City Council will be considering changes to the City’s cash-in-lieu of parkland dedication policy when it meets in September, 2015.  As a condition of development or redevelopment of land, the City may require that a certain portion of land proposed for development be conveyed to the municipality for park or other public recreational purposes.  Section 42 of the Planning Act for Ontario and the City’s current policy permits a developer to make a cash payment to the City when it is not possible to dedicate land in the area where its development is proceeding.  Land conveyed to a municipality under Section 42 is required to be used for park or other public recreational purposes, but it can also be sold by the City for cash. The dedication of parkland by a developer works best for subdivisions where space and planning allow for surplus land for public spaces to be incorporated as part of the development, but it is not always suited to high-rise projects on small sites with little extra land to provide surplus green space.  As a result, the City can take a cash contribution from a developer, in lieu of the provision of surplus land. When a developer provides a parcel of land to create a park, it is generally close to the development generated by the residential units.  However, when the City accepts cash-in-lieu of parkland dedication, there is no guarantee the money will be used to create or improve parks or open space in the area of the…

Photo : Barbara  Sinclair August 31, 2015

Mark Scott - TUC Managed IT Solutions

Benefits of Onshoring - Sponsored ArticleMany companies, when thinking of outsourcing their Service Desk, automatically assume they have to do it offshore. We naturally feel that there are a lot of benefits in any type of outsourcing, if done carefully and correctly, but here at TUC we really believe there are less risks and more economic benefits to outsourcing within North America (or “onshoring”).In North American society today there is a stigma associated with offshore Service Desks. Rightly or wrongly, even if the offshore Service Desk is performing well, it creates a negative reaction from the end-user as soon as they realize that they are talking with someone offshore. Most native English-speaking customers are more comfortable speaking with a Service Desk agent who is fluent in English and understands the culture and environment. With a North American Service Desk, language and cultural barriers are eliminated, as most North American Service Desk agents will be native English speakers and share the same culture. These interactions tend to result in greater customer satisfaction and positive impressions about the services being received.A mainland call center will also be easier to visit, making it more accessible for hands-on training and management purposes.  Here at TUC, some of our contracts require the supporting teams to frequently visit the customer sites for continuous training. This also helps the agents to learn about customer culture, environment and also meet other support groups and end-users for better understanding of processes.Some consumers who have concerns about security issues may be more willing to divulge personal data when dealing…

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Photo : Mark Scott August 18, 2014

Shareef Korah - Hire Immigrants Ottawa - Shareef Korah

Enhancing Immigrants’ Essential ‘Soft’ Skills – a win-win solution - Sponsored Article Finding and keeping workers with the knowledge and skills needed to get the job done is critical for today’s businesses. Learning more about the nine essential skills used in nearly every job can help you reap the benefits of effectively engaging immigrants at work.Many employers recognize that immigrants have the technical skills required to complete workplace tasks, but often find that they lack the equally valued “soft skills”, such as communication, problem-solving and teamwork, to excel at work.A pilot project led by Bow Valley College, Success in the Workplace: Essential Skills Training for Immigrant Professionals, found that this “disconnect” between the skills workers thought they needed (technical) and those their employers wanted (soft skills) often faded once both learned about the importance of essential skills.Essential skills offer employers a common language that can help both employers and employees identify skills gaps and support essential skills development to increase job potential. Integrating essential skills into business practices does not have to be time consuming or complicated. For example:•    The Vocabulary Building Workbook can be used with immigrant workers to boost their communication skills – both oral and written – through a variety of exercises that teach new words commonly used in the Canadian workplace. •    The Working with Others Tip Sheet is an easy-to-follow tool that offers practical tips to help improve workers’ teamwork skills.Businesses that effectively attract, retain and engage skilled immigrants benefit from increased innovation, productivity and overall competitiveness. Boost your success by tapping into this vital source of talent – and…

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Photo : Shareef Korah January 20, 2014

Jonathan Cohen - Shapiro Cohen-Jonathan Cohen

Holy .cow!! - Sponsored ArticleThe deluge of new Top Level Domains (TLDs) has begun! Top level domains are the ones after the dot. Examples:-    .com-    .org-    .travel-    .netAlmost 2000 new applications for TLDs were filed in 2012/13 with ICANN. One of ICANN’s many duties is to ensure healthy competition in the Domain Name System (DNS) for registrars and the adequate meeting of the changing/growing needs of consumers as the internet continues to expand in size and importance. Certainly the huge number of acronyms developed and used in the ICANN world is some testimony to its growth and the increasing levels of separate expertise one needs to operate effectively when advising about the DNS.After years of debate, discussion and compromise between different players in the internet space (governments; business; technical; non-commercial; registrars; registries; IP), the Board of Directors of ICANN reached a decision to open up the “root”— the actual electronic highway along which all material, data etc. travels at light speed — to an unlimited number of new TLDs including International Domain Names (IDNs) in languages that are NOT written in western (Latin) alphabets. These include Russian, Greek, Arabic, Chinese, Korean and many more around the world. It was a difficult technical challenge to make these non ASCII domain names work properly in a system designed for English speakers by English speakers but the ICANN Board understood early on that if the DNS was to really work globally and not end up ‘fracturing’, implementation of IDNs as soon as technically possible had to be a priority. That time…

Photo : Jonathan Cohen December 16, 2013

Victoria Boddy - Brazeau Seller LLP - Victoria Boddy

Optional Motor Vehicle Insurance Benefits: Do You Need Them? - Sponsored Article  The short answer is yes; you should purchase optional insurance benefits. Optional benefits provide an additional level of motor vehicle accident insurance coverage in the event that you are involved in a motor vehicle accident, regardless of whether or not you are at fault for that accident. In particular, individuals should consider purchasing optional insurance benefits for loss of income, caregiver, housekeeping and home maintenance, medical and rehabilitation, and attendant care. Imagine this: you’re T-boned at an intersection and you shatter your femur. You require surgery and have multiple screws affixed to your bones. During your recovery, you will need physiotherapy, occupational therapy and massage therapy to help rehabilitate you. You are a construction worker, so you cannot work until you are completely healed, if ever. You may have a tort claim, meaning you have a claim against the driver that T-boned you which will allow you to sue for damages, including loss of income and health care expenses. But, it could be a few years before you see any money from that lawsuit. What do you do in the interim? How do you pay for your treatment? How do you continue to make your rent or mortgage payments? Accident benefits help fill in that time gap for those who have sustained injuries in a motor vehicle accident. In particular, you may be entitled to accident benefits from your own insurer for such things as loss of income benefits, medical and rehabilitation benefits, and attendant care benefits. The loss of income benefit is…

Photo : Victoria Boddy April 18, 2016

Sheema Khan - Shapiro Cohen - Sheema Khan

Patent Landscape Analysis: Don’t Plan Without it - Sponsored Article Research and development (R&D) is usually key to the growth of small and mid-sized enterprises (SMEs). Often, the SME has one or more niche products out in the market, with others in the pipeline. However, poor strategic planning of future R&D activities – or worse, none at all – often leads to the demise of SMEs. This can be mitigated, if not avoided, by the use a valuable, but underused tool: the patent landscape analysis (PLA). A PLA will outline what type of opportunities for growth are available in a certain sector, whether the opportunity lies in a crowded space, and who will compete with these opportunities. In addition, the PLA will indicate which countries have high R&D activity, and subsequently, have a high market potential. Perhaps most valuable is the information about emerging technology clusters and sub-clusters in a given sector. Take for example, the Hybrid Electric Vehicle (HEV) sector. A PLA provides a patent filing timeline, which shows a marked increase in patent filings since 2006, due primarily to the drastic increase in gas prices from 2004-2009. Not surprisingly, the U.S. has the highest R&D activity, as the Obama administration has implemented many programs to increase innovation in the hybrid vehicle market. Next is Japan, followed by Germany. China is seventh in the world, in terms of patent filings in the hybrid vehicle sector, due to the fact that it is the only provider of rare metals (dysprosium and neodymium) that are currently used in electric motor systems of hybrid vehicles.…

Photo : Sheema Khan February 17, 2014

Lisa Anna Palmer - Hire Immigrants Ottawa - Lisa Anna Palmer

Managing Inclusion from the Middle - Sponsored ArticleMany organizations invest a great deal of time and effort in the hopes of creating an inclusive work environment. They have top down initiatives to assess organizational maturity, communicate corporate values and highlight senior management commitment. They have bottom-up initiatives led by employee councils to promote and celebrate the spirit of diversity. These efforts make a great deal of business sense and are important elements of a sound Inclusion Strategy. Then, why is it that HR and senior management within these same organizations are so often left scratching their heads to figure out why they are not achieving the desired results? Support ‘Managers in the Middle.’Middle managers are the ones who have to juggle competing priorities and oversee operations while fighting day-to-day fires. What’s more, times of fiscal restraint are placing added pressure on Ottawa’s managers with regards to employee motivation and engagement.  Overworked middle managers are the people that senior management, HR and employees rely on to implement the lion’s share of inclusion initiatives.  They are the gateway to the organization as they do the majority of hiring, communicating, requesting of accommodations, and managing of performance, etc. At the end of the day, middle managers can have the greatest impact on the success of initiatives designed to effect cultural change. Over the years, I’ve worked with hundreds of managers at all levels from a range of organizations. The vast majority are on side with creating inclusive work environments and leveraging diversity. By the same token, many are still at a loss for how…

Photo : Lisa Anna Palmer September 09, 2013