National Connections, Local Ownership
National Connections, Local Ownership

Canadian Leadership Summit Recap

NationaLease held the 2017 NationaLease Canadian Leadership Summit on November 7-9 at the Delta Halifax in Halifax, Nova Scotia. The event started with a Welcome Reception at a popular local pub, the Lower Deck.

The meeting began on Wednesday morning with a welcome from this year’s meeting chair, Peter Macgillivray of Nova Truck NationaLease. Peter thanked the planning committee, Tom Coffey, Alliance Leasing Ltd, a NationaLease Member; Rene Disnard, Transforce; and Kevin Hoyt, VEL NationaLease, before opening the floor for introductions. Peter then introduced NationaLease President, Dean Vicha, who gave an overview of NationaLease initiatives underway.

Dean then introduced the next speaker, Donald Dodge, Business Development Manager for Efficiency Nova who shared how energy efficiency can help make companies competitive and more profitable. Dawn Desjardins, Vice President and Deputy Chief Economist, RBC, then joined us to share her insights into the trends in transportation, as well as the industries that affect it, and what to expect for business in the last two quarters of 2017 and beyond.

Rob Garcia, Vice President of New Business Development, Supply Management with NationaLease then joined the group to provide an update on current spend trends within NationaLease, review new supplier programs and current programs in the pipeline, and offer ways to utilize the programs to maximize savings and rebates. Closing out the morning session, Dwayne Haug, Business Development & Sales with PIT Group shared some Maintenance Best Practices.

After lunch, the members and suppliers met for a “Speed Networking” session, where each member and each supplier had the opportunity to meet for a few minutes to discuss the products and services they offered, and how they can assist the NationaLease members. From there, the group boarded a bus to take a tour of Nova Truck NationaLease’s brand new facility, then on to VEL NationaLease’s facility for a traditional Lobster Boil, where all attendees were treated to a lobster and steak feast cooked and served with tremendous hospitality by VEL NationaLease staff.

The Thursday morning session began with a brief review of suppliers’ feedback from Rob Garcia, then an overview of the new Corcentric Marketplace from Scott Marzec, Member Programs Manager with NationaLease. Jordi Morgan, Vice-President, Atlantic Canadian Federation of Independent Business, then joined the group to discuss his group’s efforts to help reduce the tax burden for independent businesses across Canada. The morning session continued with Nicole Coderre, President, Location NRJ NationaLease, who shared how she managed to find a new pool of qualified technicians in the Philippines! Adam Peters, Regional Manager with TD Wealth, then joined the group to share his insight on how to create a business succession plan that can provide both short- and long-term benefits.

After lunch, Anita Kirkbride, Owner of Twirp Communications Inc., shared 10 things we need to know about social media, including “what is a hashtag, anyway?” and helped the group walk away with a simple plan to put social media to work. Courtney Barbour, Associate with Barteaux Durnford, then joined the group to discuss employment law fundamentals for small businesses.

Jane Clark, Vice President of Member Services with NationaLease then shared some of the new programs and services available through NationaLease. She also announced the growth of Nova Truck NationaLease to full membership.
Jean-Marc Picard, Executive Director with Atlantic Provinces Trucking Association closed the afternoon session with a discussion of Canadian regulations, and especially the ELD Mandate.

This year’s meeting concluded with the Awards Dinner. Dean Vicha began with a recognition of Rene Disnard of Transforce, who announced his upcoming retirement. Jane Clark continued with the presentation of the NationaLease Canadian Most Valuable Performance Award. This award is meant to recognize those Canadian Members who have had outstanding performance in areas of business growth, member participation, and purchasing within the NationaLease System. This year’s recipients are Nova Truck NationaLease and VEL NationaLease. Jane also recognized the Canadian Supplier of the Year, an award determined by votes from the Canadian NationaLease membership. The 2017 Canadian Supplier of the Year was awarded to Freightliner Trucks Canada.

Next year’s Canadian Leadership Summit will be held at the Four Seasons in Vancouver, BC on November 5-7, 2018.

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