Why we’re ecstatic that we didn’t win the Calgary Chamber’s Resilient Business Award.

Calgary's Resilient Business Awards

On September 8th we received word that we were not chosen as a finalist in the Calgary Resilient Business Awards. We had entered in the category of RBC Resilient Business Award: SME. (For those of you not up on your acronyms, SME is “Small to Medium Enterprise.”)

So why are we ecstatic?

It’s not that we’re content with participation ribbons. Despite being empathetic, compassionate people working at a not-for-profit on behalf of Albertans, Prospect staff are competitive, motivated and determined. We like winning as much as the next organization. For proof, look at our record in the Calgary Corporate Challenge. (But don’t look too closely.)

And it’s not that Prospect isn’t resilient. As the consolation e-mail acknowledged, “You are still a resilient business and are doing amazing things in our community. We are inspired by your grit and determination.”

It was this grit and determination that enabled Prospect to adapt and move 90% of our services from in-person to on-line and remote delivery – all within 36 hours of the COVID shutdown. Many of the workshops we use to help clients were adapted to video formats. Seminars became webinars. Staff helped our clients with new technologies and learning styles. For people with disabilities, mental health challenges, or substance abuse issues this was very labour-intensive.

But back to the original question. We are ecstatic because the fact that we weren’t even a finalist is evidence that there are lots of resilient organizations in Calgary. The competition must have been fierce. And that makes us very happy. Because Prospect needs thriving, resilient employers as partners in what we do: helping Albertans overcome barriers and find rewarding jobs.

Resilient organizations are often diverse and inclusive. We know this because a number of the organizations that were finalists or sponsors of categories are already working with us. SPUD is a recipient of a DEAM Award (Disability Employment Awareness Month). ATB Financial has partnered with us on many occasions.

We would like to congratulate all the finalists, and the Calgary Chamber for such a relevant recognition program. We promise that next year, we will do everything we can to claw our way into contention. Because it looks like resilience is going to be a prerequisite for every organization in the months to come.