Hard-won lessons in success from Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies

It’s rarely a straightforward route to success. Here are some of the most valuable lessons that PROFIT 500 winners have collected on the journey

PROFIT 500: Canada’s Fastest-Growing Companies

(Paul Bence/Unsplash)

No successful business is without some missteps, of course, but every thriving company is clearly doing some things right. PROFIT 500 entrepreneurs were asked to describe the smartest move year they made in the past year. All sorts of answers came back. From buying their own real estate to using excess cash flow to purchase discounted inventory, there was an immense variety to the responses.

Respondents also had many lessons to share from their business experiences. Some talked about how important it is to be persistent when time are tough. Others noted that finding the right people is crucial. And one mentioned that it’s wise to only approach a potential lender from a position of strength.

Here are some other examples of smart moves and smart lessons from the Profit 500 list:

“We created a very detailed budget, then cascaded the data down to every employee so that each person has an individual plan that adds up to the corporate plan.  Then we made this information public and we managed to it very closely including 1v1 meetings, individual team meetings, town hall meetings with all staff, etc.”
—Annex Consulting Group, Stacey Cerniuk, CEO

“Our biggest challenge has been diversifying customer concentration. We overcame our customer concentration by instituting a successful M&A program that drove down customer concentration dramatically.”
—TIO Networks, Hamed Shahbazi, CEO

“Always trust your gut instinct. If something doesn’t feel right, it isn’t.”
—Pro-Ply Custom Plywood, Vaughn LaVigne, CEO

“Don’t try to do too much.  Delegation is so important.”
—Javelin Technologies, John Carlan, Managing Director

These tips are just a small flavour of what’s in the full PROFIT 500 guide. For the complete list of companies that made the cut, check out this link. The whole PROFIT 500 package can be accessed here, and includes rankings, profiles and comments from keynote speaker Amber MacArthur and panelists such as Kirstine Stewart and Harley Finkelstein from Shopify.