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Economic Development eNews | August 9, 2022
Business Profile
Seasons of Westport Brings Style In-store and Online
WESTPORT - A popular women's clothing store with "fashions for every lifestyle" is now making its mark online.

Seasons of Westport Owner Lori Reynen is embracing digital marketing of her clothing lines and accessories to expand shopping options for her customers. People still love walking into her store but they can now have the option of getting previews at home and shopping online.

"Digital and social media is the way to go," says Lori. The retired ICU / ER nurse is using her customer data base and Facebook page to let people know what's happening with new arrivals and product lines. She has expanded her clothing lines, including many that are Made in Canada. Lori is further developing her website and online shop on a continual basis.

Lori has been able to expand in this way by having accessed multiple Digital Main Street programs, including ShopHERE, which gave her one-on-one training to manage her website. She also accessed the Digital Transformation grant with two successful applications.

"I can put everything on the website myself," she says of software upgrades she has made. "I really enjoy it."

Getting the most out of the grants and programs was made easier with the support of Digital Services expert Cyndy Bolton through the Leeds Grenville Economic Development Office. "Finding cost effective ways to boost brands and efficiently engage clients is an issue all business owners are faced with," says Cyndy.

"Recognizing the gap and solving the problem is Lori's super power. She also keeps her marketing plan fresh," adds Cyndy.

In 2017, Lori was approached by the owners of Seasons, a mainstay in the village since 2008.

"It all went so smoothly and everyone, the previous owners and other businesses, were really supportive," says Lori, adding she also appreciated excellent staff already working at the store.

Running a shop in a small tourist town can be very enjoyable, she said. "It is nice to meet so many people and people come through Westport from all over the world. It's very rewarding."

Learn more about Seasons of Westport by visiting the website and the online shop as well as and the Facebook page. You can call the store at 613-273-8792 or send Lori an email.

Seasons is a partner with the Westport Arts Council for the upcoming Music Westport event on August 20 and is hosting a band on the porch for "Westporch" on September 17.
Top Feature photo: Seasons of Westport Owner Lori Reynen in her spacious shop and below on the steps of her new location: 18 Church Street.
Longtime employee Linda Hatfield.
Be a Part of the Leeds Grenville Regional Showcase at the IPM
The Leeds Grenville Economic Development Office is coordinating a Regional Showcase at the International Plowing Match and Rural Expo being held in Kemptville from September 20-24. 

The Showcase will feature businesses and organizations from all 13 municipalities and the products and services offered in the themed showcase areas of Water, Nature & Recreation, Food & Culinary, Agriculture & Logistics, History & Heritage, Arts & Entertainment, and Municipal / Economic Development / Workforce / Education. This five-day event brings an estimated 70,000 people to the region.
There are various ways businesses and organizations can be part of the Leeds Grenville showcase:
  • Interactive Promotional Booth
  • Provide an educational session or demonstration
  • Regional Product Display
  • Provide your brochure for the Leeds Grenville kiosk

For more information and how to be part of this promotional opportunity, please contact us via email.

The IPM Promotional Poster is now available to print and share via social media. 

Advanced online tickets are now on sale for more information visit the IPM website.
Attention: Is Your Company Growing?

The Leeds Grenville Economic Development Office would like to identify the fastest growing companies in the United Counties. Is your company one of them? If so, please let us know!

There are many growing companies in the Eastern Ontario region. We are interested in knowing more about your company and possibly featuring it in the form of a Business Profile and on a new list documenting our fastest growing businesses.

Information about your company will appear on our Invest website as well as in this online eNews publication. Our local fastest growing companies will also be promoted outside of Leeds Grenville in the greater Ontario East and Ottawa Capital regions.

Let us know by contacting Leeds Grenville Economic Development Manager Ann Weir at 613-342-3840, ext. 5365, or send her an email.
Quick Money for Digital Transformation

The Digital Transformation Grant offers small businesses who pay commercial taxes an opportunity to access $2,500. Our Digital Specialist will support you in easily applying, and the grant will pay dividends by improving your digital footprint. Just ask Lori Reynen from our Business Profile. She has received it twice! Businesses must complete a pre-qualification screening, watch 2.5-hours of video training and submit a 3-page application. You too can receive $2500 to make those long-wished-for digital improvements to your business.
Once you are approved, go shopping! The Digital Transformation Grant gives you the money to create or upgrade:

  • Point of Sale Systems - brands such as Square Up, Shopify POS
  • Website / Social Media - Digital Marketing Consultant can do the work for you
  • Media - Images & Video - professional photographer / videographer can improve your content
  • Accessibility - consultant can upgrade your website to meet AODA standards
  • Software - brands such as QuickBooks, Canva, Hootsuite, Norton
  • Learning / Training - virtual and in-person courses
  • Hardware - limited to $1,000 maximum, as deemed necessary solely by OBIAA
Online is where the growth is, so complete the easy 6 step process today and join the hundreds of Leeds Grenville businesses who have already checked off their digital improvement wish list!

Businesses interested in taking advantage of these limited-time offered grants should reach out today to determine their eligibility. Join the 155 grant recipients and over 1,000 business owners already served in Leeds Grenville.
For more information on the Leeds Grenville program visit the webpage and to connect with our Digital Service Specialist Cyndy Bolton via email or call 613-342-3840, ext. 5368.

Watch the How to Apply Video
Create Your Account and start your application today
Workforce Development
2022 Fall Virtual Job Fair - Employers Get Your Free Booth
Are you hiring for the Fall and Winter seasons? The Employment + Education Centre has teamed up with CSE Consulting to provide a platform to talk with and collect applications from job seekers across Leeds Grenville. Meet qualified candidates and hire your new team members.

WHEN: Thursday, September 22, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m.

For more information and to register a free booth, email Jayme at the Employment + Education Centre. If you are in the Prescott or Kemptville area email Rod at CSE Consulting.
Canada-Ontario Job Grant gives Support to Employers or Employer Consortia

Do you want to provide training for your staff? Employers can access up to $10,000 to train team members! The Canada-Ontario Job Grant provides direct financial support to individual employers or employer consortia who wish to purchase training for their employees. It is available to small, medium and large businesses with a plan to deliver short-term training to existing and new employees.

Teanne Larocque, Employment + Education Centre - 613-498-2111 Ext. 365 or send her an email.
Jennifer Fournier at CSE Consulting in Prescott - 613-925-0222 or send her an email, and Tracy McDonald in Kemptville at 613-258-6576 or send her an email.
Dana Betournay, Keys Job Centre in Gananoque - 613-453-3923 or send her an email.

See the coverage areas in the map below.
Workshops, Seminars and Webinar Library
Ontario Tourism Education Corporation launches
De-escalation Training

OTEC is introducing its new Service Excellence: De-escalation Training, a simple, unique way to equip your team with the necessary skills to pivot through difficult interactions at work. The pandemic has created higher levels of stress and anxiety in daily life. At times, customers can become confrontational with workers, who then need to manage the situation.

The training empowers your team with the skills, knowledge and tools to transform negative situations into opportunities. The training can impact your workplace by:
  • Fostering effective communications and improving work climate
  • Helping workers apply EQ concepts through customer experiences and with their colleagues
  • Showing workers how to recognize and manage their emotions during interactions with guests

Who should attend?
  • Front-line employees
  • Supervisors
  • Management

This is a 20-minute eLearning course that is being offered for $10. Learn more, or to register, visit the OTEC website. OTEC is a not-for-profit organization delivering training, insight and consulting.
Written Policy on Disconnecting with Work

The Ministry of Labour, Immigration, Training and Skills Development is hosting a free webinars to provide information to employees and employers on the written policy on disconnecting from work requirements.

The webinar will be delivered by a subject-matter expert from the ministry who will:
  • provide an overview of the rules
  • identify key deadlines
  • answer your questions about the requirements (time permitting)
Please note these sessions are provided for informational purposes only. It should not be used as or considered legal advice.
WHEN: Wednesday, August 24, 1:30-2:30 p.m.
COST: Free
Leeds Grenville eNews Deadlines for submitting information:
If you have an upcoming workshop, seminar, or business-related event, please email it to us in advance.
  • Submissions for the August 23rd edition should be received by Monday, August 15th
  • Submissions for the September 6th edition should be received by Monday, August 29th.
32 Wall Street, Suite 300, Brockville, ON K6V 4R9
613-342-3840 | 1-800-770-2170 | econdev@uclg.on.ca