Entrepreneurship is far from being a long calm river, but some companies seem to stay quite naturally on the side of success. However, COVID-19 has changed everything for two years. Still, 37 companies are now in the Platinum Club of Deloitte’s Best Managed Companies list, meaning they’ve been there for at least seven years. Overview of this enduring success.

Tenaquip, a distributor of industrial and occupational health and safety products, has been on the Deloitte list for 17 years. Even though the company founded in 1968 has seen snow, the pandemic has really brought a lot of uncertainty.

“At first we weren’t even sure we could continue to operate, but since we’re handing out a lot of N95 masks and nitrile gloves for frontline workers, we were lucky enough to stay open,” says Glenn. Watt, chief financial officer of Tenaquip, which has 600 employees.

Of course, teleworking has imposed itself. “It was completely new to us, but we worked with people in the human resources department to find tools that would allow directors and managers to stay in touch with their employees,” he explains. We asked that they meet more frequently to make sure everyone was okay in terms of physical and mental health. »

Most recently, the company has asked its employees to come into the office at least two days a week. “It’s a bare minimum, but if people want to come back five days a week, that’s okay too,” says Glenn Watt, who runs the business with COO Braden Green, both in-laws. son of the founder, Ken Reed.

Marc-Antoine Coutu, senior partner at M Groupe Conseil, a firm specializing in global management, believes that companies active in sectors that could do well during COVID-19 and that did well are really those who have been able to adapt their management style.

This also comes with the adjustment of the corporate culture which goes through concrete elements. “For example, a company that had a culture of continuous feedback had to find other ways to do it, because it’s no longer possible remotely,” adds Marc-Antoine Coutu. There are no more informal meetings. Celebrating successes and sticking together in adversity are concepts that exist much less remotely. We had to redefine our ways of doing things. »

Companies on the Best Managed Companies list have also been able to quickly adapt their business strategies, notes Brigitte Vachon, Deloitte’s Canadian provincial program leader.

Many of these companies have also made acquisitions, often outside Quebec, and even abroad.

“It is certain that for this to be possible, they had to have a good financial performance, illustrates Ms. Vachon. In fact, Best Managed Companies reinvest a large portion of their profits back into the business. »

She also points out that we have seen several acquisitions with a view to achieving vertical integration. “It’s a way for companies to be present throughout the supply chain, so it can help a lot when there’s uncertainty. »

At Tenaquip, we had to work very hard to maintain the supply. “We place orders with suppliers and often they don’t know when they will be able to deliver them to us, or they tell us in 4 to 6 months, I have even seen 60 weeks,” says Mr. Watt. Our teams are working very hard to find other suppliers to give the fastest possible service to our customers who need these products. »

He points out, however, that the founder of Tenaquip set up a foundation years ago to which a portion of the profits goes. “We donate to organizations that help people in need and we’ve given more during the pandemic,” says Watt. This is very important for employees because they know that their efforts at work are not only used to make more profits, but also to help people. »



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