“I think everyone who's an optimist is a senior-to-be. We all hope to grow old. We might not like the idea of aging, but it's a fact we accept, and we all want to live a good long life.”
With this mindset, Jeff Gaye established “Respect”—a newspaper for the seniors and would-be seniors of Cold Lake and area. While working his previous job as editor of the weekly newspaper at CFB Cold Lake, Jeff felt he could do more, especially for the largest demographic that still actually read and enjoyed newspapers: senior citizens.
Seeing the excitement that the old boys at their morning coffee congregation would express when he would deliver the military newspaper, he was determined to give them a top-notch quality paper geared towards them and their concerns. In the process, he would “make [his] own mistakes and take [his] own risks” as he put it, and with his newfound independence, deliver his best work to these folks.
Respect is a biweekly community paper covering the ins and outs of small-town life and all that affects it. This includes seniors’ sports, the arts, community events, and some politics, with a focus on seniors’ affairs. The paper is written from seniors’ perspectives, and is tailored towards them with things like a crisp, clear, larger font, as well as containing a full two pages of the activity elements of a regular newspaper (crosswords, sudoku, word search, etc.) that senior citizens tend to enjoy, rather than relegating that to the dusty back corner of the last page. This is a paper where seniors can see themselves and their stories, and all that pertains to them, in an important spotlight. It is very warm with its attractive full-colour display and high-quality editing, with high-quality material physically comprising the paper to match that.
A particularly special section of the paper is one titled “Your Stories,” which is composed of reader-submitted anecdotes, poems, snippets, and thoughts. This holds a special place in Jeff’s heart, as it harkens back to the more personal side of why he launched Respect. When he served as bandmaster at CFB Cold Lake, he received several requests each year to play The Last Post at the funerals of veterans in the area.
While he would carry out these honours for those who served before him, he never actually knew the people in whose honour he played. That is, until he listened to their stories as told by their families, at which point he came to realize that the stories of these veterans were also the great stories of the area’s history. Stories not quite recorded in any official capacity, but those inspiring stories of homesteaders who put in the back-breaking work to settle the area, who as Jeff said “found a home and found love and built a family”.
And while the target readership of Respect is the senior citizens of Cold Lake, Bonnyville, and St. Paul area, anyone can read this paper, for “everyone who's an optimist is a senior-to-be.” In printing this newspaper, Jeff modestly does his part to help the senior citizen, veteran, builders of this province and indeed, the nation, live an optimistic, honoured old age.
Author: Issam K. - Reporter
The financial side of the business environment is one of the most dreaded aspects of running a business anywhere in the world, and here in Alberta it’s no different. Yet it is one of the most essential aspects of business survival.
“I help your business say goodbye to the financial chaos.” That is how Kirsha Campbell, cashflow maven and founder of The Cash Lab, a boutique accounting and financial services firm in Leduc, Alberta, succinctly described her business.
Establishing the firm almost three years ago, Kirsha helps small businesses to set up effective processes, that drive efficiency and cash flow in your business. She helps your business become cash positive. In addition to reducing the risk of bankruptcy and increasing the overall value of your business.
The Cash Lab provides tailor made financial services to small businesses. Customizing their services to fit any special need, and goals. The firm also offers training courses to help support business owners in the various accounting and financial management areas of their business.
Kirsha considers a business as a human anatomy, each part serves a vital purpose, and every part is essential to the overall health and wellness of the whole body.
The hardest part of running a business in today’s world is maintaining a positive cash flow. In their pursuit of sustainability, many business owners focus mainly on selling and closing deals. They are constantly running after that next project or closing that next sale. However, cash flow is the lifeblood of the business, and just as we humans can't survive without air and blood, in the same way, your business will never survive without cash flow.
One of the biggest pitfalls of small business is the false impression that they only need accounting services at tax return time. In reality they need to have their eyes on their cash flow, they need to be vigilant of not spending too much, they need to watch their bank account, and they must consider all the various parts of their business. For example, accounts receivables should not be that high, it should not take too long to be paid, and constant bank overdrafts are not normal. Simply put, it is crucial to fathom the many levels and dynamics of operating a business.
Building long lasting relationships with customers is Kirsha’s forte and what distinguishes her in her field. in fact, her relationship building goes above and beyond the service contract. When she takes on a new client, she takes it on as her own business. Your wins, your struggles become hers as well. She listens well to your needs and pains and works with you step by step to design and develop the most appropriate solutions that suit your unique needs and aspirations.
Concluding our meeting, Kirsha gave the following sage advice to other small business owners:
“As a small business owner, realize the importance and the value you're bringing to your community. It's not just about your completion of a project or closing of a sale; It is much deeper than that. Your small business is the backbone of your society, and your country. Take a step back and realize the importance and the value that you're bringing to the table, do not take it lightly.”
Courtesy of Alberta Chambers of Commerce