Business Vancouver Island: Podcast #1 EO Vancouver Island Introduction

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Kael: Welcome to the first episode of Business Vancouver Island, I’m your host Kael Campbell, and this is.

John: I’m John Keirstead.

Kael: Thanks so much for tuning in, we’re sponsored today by the entrepreneurs’ organization of Vancouver Island, John and I have been members for many years and we’ll likely mention them throughout this podcast and many to come.

Just wanted to start off today by getting into “why are we doing this podcast.” And also what ties in with that “why are we doing business on Vancouver Island.”

John: Absolutely, yeah, this is a whole new format for us so you’re all going to be learning along with us. So where do you want to start Kael?

Kael: I’ll start with you John.

John: Why Vancouver Island?

Kael: Yeah, why are you doing business,

John: It’s Vancouver Island man! I went to Railroads Military College when I was a young lad, never actually graduated from military college, decided that the entrepreneurial life would be better for me but I always want to come back here, I’m from Edmonton as you know, Edmonton is actually a great business environment but it’s cold.

You know 8 years, or 8 months of cold winters and such, I always want to come back here and start a business and, the island’s unique, you know it’s kind of like an isolated market cause we’re on an island.

Kael: Cause we’re on an island, I was born at Vancouver Island as well and I did leave as well, I went to the University of Vancouver, got into both the corporate world and working in government, had a job on Robertson street, went up and down to sea to skies corridor, skiing at whistler and yeah.

John: Sound like a good life, better than Edmonton.

Kael: It is a good life, used to love the Vancouver Canucks-Edmonton Oiler

John: Rivalry?

Kael: Rivalry, not a lot of great goals but a lot of great fights back in the day but I really, my heart was back on Vancouver Island, I’ve grown up in both Vancouver and in Courtney. And I’ve decided after experiencing the rat race to move back to Vancouver Island and I didn’t think it was to start a business but definitely once I got here, I realized that’s what I wanted to do on Island, and that came a lot for my parents who had businesses that were started on Island and they did business up and down Island, and off island. So that’s kind of the why for me.

John: Yeah, it’s I mean, it’s a different lifestyle here and I think that’s part of it, you know, as entrepreneurs often balances and that’s one of the things that we’re really good at and what I was hoping is that way bringing my family here we could get some of the other things that we wanted in our life and it seems on the island here that people slow down a little bit, they smell the flowers and there are flowers, you know there’s just lots to do outdoors, it’s a wonderful environment and I don’t know, I think the people are, they’re different here, you know it is less rat race, like you said, that people are more authentic, I find on a lot of cases and you know, that other businesses I’ve met through EO, it’s just, it’s different, and I like it, it’s a positive difference.

Kael: Nice, well, one of the things that kind of spark my interest in doing this podcast was, at my neighbourhood actually moved here from Onterio, he was starting the business just this past winter, and it was actually a tow truck business and you know, we have a lot of flowers at this point in the year but a month or two ago it was not the same pretty picture, he had this brand new tow truck but he had no customers, even though we had one of the worst snow storms in probably 10 years, and I was like ‘oh my god, he doesn’t have any resources, he doesn’t have any advertising.’ But I whipped over, jump on his computer, I said ‘let’s sign you up with google ad words.’ and within the what, 24 hours? He was getting calls, building his business, and I think that’s kind of the story for a lot of people is, come here a little bit for the environment, and then start your business and also get help.

John: Yeah.

Kael: You know, if it’s your neighbour who’s going to help you out or your landlord if you just moved in to a new lease hold, there’s some great people here and some great resources, and that’s one of the reasons I’m here.

John: When you’re, you’re from Up island originally, have you noticed that there’s any difference you know between business there or that cultural things there as opposed to say Victoria or where we’re at right now?

Kael: Yeah, definitely, I was born and raised in Courtney and my father ran an expiration business from Courtney but had investors and a lot of business support on Island, but did a lot of his expiration off Island, up in northern VC, and yeah, I mean, if I’m on a vacation to Tofino or visiting clients in Nanaimo, you know it is slightly different. But there’s always I think a good feel to each of the communities and different opportunities in each places, so that’s one of the things that we’re going to touch on you know, in the following episodes, and more is really where you’re going to run a great business, and to me probably right now, there’s never one place if I was going to start a new business would likely be the Langford, Colwood area because it’s one of the fastest growing and you know, with business, some of us are concentrating on growth and definitely that community is one of the places where there’s a lot of growth, so it helps.

John: For sure. And I think, I mean one of the other aspects of the Island is that it is an island, you know if you’re really good here, you can be the main guys, you know what I mean? You’re not necessarily competing with some big company that’s you know, global or across Canada or otherwise, you get these smaller isolated, and you can be the best in your marketplace and it is somewhat isolated, and you have some protection like that, I know for my business, that’s been a big deal. You know three years ago we were just opening up and now we’re the largest on the island.

Kael: Nice, so that brings me to a blue ocean strategy yeah, there’s a book and there’s a consulting business by that name and that’s where are the opportunities, and definitely up and down Vancouver Island there is you know, either millions of visitors or millions of residents that you know, we can target as entrepreneurs and lots of businesses as well. We’ll dive into the business to business services that we might provide, I personally provide on island and also off island but also the business to consumer market is huge even.

John: That’s my angle. Retail, right? People are buying things everywhere so, but I mean even retailing has changed dramatically, so maybe that will be something we touch on on another episode as well.

Kael: Yeah, that sounds good, well, I think we’ll wind that up for today, we’re going to keep these podcast quite short, a little bite size on your, short for you which happens for most people on Vancouver Island, but definitely we’re going to be coming out with a new episode every week so please tune in.

Thank you so much John for co-hosting this podcast, I’d like to thank Dennis who is producing this podcast, and also Kevin who is producing our jingle for us, intros and outros, and the Entrepreneurs Organization of Vancouver Island.

John: Thank you, thanks for having me.

About Business Vancouver Island Podcast: Created in Victoria by John Keirstead and Kael Campbell, two Entrepreneurs Organization Vancouver Island Members who love doing business here. Our goal is to dive into the who, what, where, why and how business is being done in every community on the Island. Having worked in and with customers from; Port McNeill, Victoria, Tofino, Port Alberni, Nanaimo, Courtenay, Comox, Cumberland, Campbell River, Ladysmith, Duncan, Sidney, Langford and Sooke, we are excited to dive into business topics that affect you.

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