“What’s the One Thing?” A reflection on the CanSPEP 2017 Conference

As a relatively new entrepreneur, I admit that I have felt a little overwhelmed by the vast quantity of advice and resources available to me at any given moment. In this world of incessant technology, we are literally surrounded by helpful resources all the time – uploaded onto the CanSPEP website, coming at us through our Social Media channels, being offered by partners and mentors. And at the CanSPEP 2017 Conference, held in Charlottetown, PEI in July, I nearly filled an entire notebook with thoughts, ideas, bullet points and inspired ideas.

So the question is, how do we most effectively tap into the wealth of knowledge available to us? And how do we filter through it, then distill it down into tangible chunks of information that we can process and make the best use of? As we heard from Bertha Jay of Business Development Canada, in her keynote address, “Strategies for Improving Business Growth”, people who leverage advice perform better than others in their sector. That notebook I carried around with me in July doesn’t do any good if it just sits on my bookshelf – the nuggets of knowledge and inspiration contained within it need to be freed from those pages, to infiltrate my thoughts and actions in tangible ways. But how do we transform resources into actions? Where do we even begin?

Lara Wellman of The Biz Studio talked about identifying the ‘one big thing’ that would make your business better. It’s different for everyone, of course. But for all of us, there is one big thing (among all the other little things!) that could get us from where we are to where want to be. Wellman also challenged the group to think about what is stopping us from having it, and whether we are actually ready for it.

Perhaps focusing on one big thing is an effective way to leverage the good advice I’ve been offered and the resources I’ve accessed. After identifying it, filtering new information into categories becomes much easier– that which supports my current focus, and that which does not. The challenge, of course, is identifying that one thing that will propel me forward, the one thing that I am missing and desperately need to add into my life or my business.

Connor LaRocque also touched on having a focused mind in his session “Accessing Your Hidden Resources”. Though LaRocque’s approach to business didn’t resonate with me personally, I did take one thing from his message – every day, he carries a gold card around in his pocket. Every day, multiple times a day, he puts a hand into that pocket and feels the edges of the card. And every time he touches the card, it focuses his mind back to his singular goal in life. Personally, my focus item wouldn’t be a gold card – but I have challenged myself to find an object to carry with me, something to remind me of why I became an entrepreneur, of what I love the most about my business. A daily reminder of my focus, my goal. Or, as Wellman would put it, the one thing that would propel my business to a new level.


Name & Company: Angela Chorney, Dots & Crosses Event Management

Number of years in business: 1 (…almost!)

Born & raised: just outside Vancouver, BC – but I have been in Victoria long enough now to consider it ‘home’

What do you specialize in? Conference management

What do you love most about your job? Making my clients’ dreams a reality! I love the moment when I truly catch their vision and my mind begins running with the details and logistics I need to take care of in order to make it happen.

If you could outsource 1 part of your job what would it be? I am still fairly new to the industry, building my business and taking on all sorts of different projects. At this stage, there aren’t any aspects I would outsource, since I still have so much to learn about the varied tasks associated with being an entrepreneurial event planner.

Favourite place to travel? Locally, my aunt and uncle’s home is a couple of hours up the coast from where I live, and it’s right on the water – it truly is my ‘happy place’, where I can breathe in the fresh air and relax in a beautiful, natural setting. Internationally, one of the best countries I’ve visited is Vietnam.

Fun Fact about you: I have visited over 30 countries! I love to travel; early in my life I set a ’40 by 40′ goal (40 countries by the time I turn 40).


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