Small and Medium-Sized Businesses Can Play an Important Role to Affect Change
We are coming to the end of Pride Month which has looked quite differently in 2020. With physical distancing measures in place, people have found new ways to celebrate diversity and inclusion for the LGBTQ+ community. Messages of support have flooded social channels and been shared through virtual events.
This month we have also witnessed the world crying out for an end to racism with protests triggered by tragedies such as the deaths of George Floyd in the Minnesota and Chantel Moore in New Brunswick.
Systemic racism is found in all aspects of society: government, the criminal justice system, health care, education, and business. It is only through open dialogue that we can continue to learn and make the changes necessary to create an equitable, respectful, and fully inclusive society.
For many small and medium-sized business owners, these larger than life issues are better left for politicians and major corporations to address. Heck, we are living through a global pandemic and focused on trying to keep the lights on. Some also feel that as a small business there is not much we can do to make a meaningful impact.
In Canada, 98% of businesses are small and medium-sized enterprises. Nine out of ten people who work in the private sector work for a SME. Separately, our influence may be small, but collectively we can make a tremendous impact on society.
I believe that the diversity of the team here at Kryton has been the key to our success. Headquartered in Vancouver, we have a talented and diverse population to draw from. We employ 70 people, the majority based here in Vancouver, but we also have staff located across Canada, the United States, China, and Asia. Our team members originate in 17 different countries, have even more numerous ethnic backgrounds and include many visible and non-visible minorities. Further to that, our executive team is 50% women which is unusual to find in the construction sector.
During the 2008 recession and now the global pandemic, Kryton has benefitted from the unique perspectives our team brings to the table. Then and now, we came together to address the challenges facing our business and problem-solve in a way that only comes from a team with diverse backgrounds. We benefit from our unique points of view as it opens the door to creative solutions. In 2008, the financial crisis forced many companies to lay off staff. Kryton found strategies for keeping all our staff employed. So far, we have not had to lay off a single staff member during the global pandemic thanks to the hard work and ingenuity of our team.
This year has not been an easy one, but if 2020 has taught us anything it is that we are stronger together.