Prior to being a business owner, you worked as a bouncer at night clubs. What lessons did you gain from your time working there that has helped you in your current ventures?
Dealing with tough conversations, no matter what the situation is. Dealing with customers here I dealt with some of the worst situations you could ever imagine, and it taught me that you have to totally approach these conversations from a place of understanding, empathy, and treating them like they’re your very best friend.
It also taught me how to read body language VERY well. in loud situations, loud music and noise, you really had to learn to read body language. It’s helped me in meetings, allowed me to listen to tone and body language and learn so much more than from just people’s words.
I had to learn how to separate business and friendships at a young age and make sure I didn’t mix both. Having friends working for me, I was able to hold them accountable and treat them well- work is work and off work if off work.
Back then it was so important to have things locked up in a proper contract vs a handshake deal, especially with night clubs being so notorious for not paying.
What sparked your passion for empowering your work force?
Unfortunately I was at rock bottom, and I had no choice but to do something very creative and innovative that hadn’t been done in our industry. Reading and constantly consuming content and being involved in Entrepreneurs Organization allowed me to get inspired and learn from other entrepreneurs. Companies like Starbucks and Southwest stories inspired me.
What changes did you noticed in your own companies’ once you shifted the focus to empowering your employees?
We threw out the rule book completely and everything changed. Not just from our retention and our customer service- my own time became more strategic and proactive vs reactive… everything changed. We threw out all policy and procedures, and shifted to simple, scaleable systems. Employees were given a simple three-pronged decision-making process (In short: Is it the right thing for the customer? Is it the right thing for the business? Are you willing to be accountable?) and were able to make decisions on their own.
This resulted in front line employees making their own decisions then telling us what they did and why they did it. We now had minimum wage employees acting strategically. I can’t TELL you how much that impacted our company. We grew 60% in a 24-month period.
What are the unexpected changes your clients have reported from implementing your strategies?
No decision-making bottlenecks, less bureaucracy, and better relationships with their staff (to name a few). Really getting in front of their human resources problems that had them pulling their hair out. They are now finally taking back control, enjoying it, and turning it into their company’s competitive advantage.
What is the single most important change you recommend companies make to empower their employees?
Get out of their way! I want to sneak 2 in here…One of the #1 things that happens over and over again is people add complexity and bureaucracy as they scale instead of making things simpler. Those things suck the energy out of not just the company, but the founders too.
What’s next for you?
Staying on my path. I am really enjoying what I’m doing with VIDA and Connolly Owens, and I want to focus on growing and scaling these companies
And trying to remind myself to not be in such a rush 🙂
You can find Ron online on his website, Twitter, and LinkedIn. And you can learn more about VIDA Living, which aims to revolutionize affordable housing, here.
While we are always on board for new trends (hello, modern boho!), we also love a good timeless style. One of our favourites is the Coastal look, which is a natural fit for us here in Atlantic Canada.
There’s something so fresh and welcoming about Coastal decor, and it brings a piece of seaside living to any home, regardless of its proximity to the ocean.
In today’s post, we’re sharing five of our favourite light fixtures from Hinkley Lighting. Hinkley offers both an interior Coastal collection and an exterior Coastal Elements collection, designed to withstand harsh climates and elements, perfect for our Atlantic Canadian winters and salty ocean winds.
Head to our Where to Buy page and search “Hinkley Lighting” to find these fixtures in a showroom near you.
The perfect Coastal pendant, the Nash is somehow both unique and classic at the same time. With hand panted stripes and jute rope, the details of Nash bring organic warmth and texture to any space.
Available in Satin Nickle and Oil Rubbed Bronze, and a variety of styles including flush mounts, pendants, and posts, the Republic fixtures add the perfect coastal vibe to any space in (or outside of) your home. Their resilient finishes feature a 5-year warranty and are resistant to rust and corrosion.
A Hinkley classic, the Nantucket features a timeless New England design for the ultimate in vintage nautical chic. The fixture is available in flush mounts, pendants, and posts, in an Aged Brass finish, clear seedy glass panels and durable solid brass construction.
The Crew pendant was one of our favourite new releases at this year’s Lightovation, and it’s easy to see why! Offered in crisp Polished Nickel, Black with Heritage Brass, or Robin’s Egg Blue finishes, the single or linear pendants enhance modern, rustic, industrial or coastal spaces alike. They suit so many spaces, but how cute would the Robin’s Egg Blue single pendant be in a cottage kitchen?? *swooon*
Freeport features a classic New England design constructed from a composite material for timeless, traditional style. The fixtures are available in a variety of styles and finishes, and the finish is resistant to rust and corrosion with a 5-year warranty.
We had one of those blink-and-you-miss-it summers here in Atlantic Canada, and we don’t know about you but we are clinging to every last bit of outdoor time we can get! If you didn’t get your fill of warm summer evenings on the deck, we have the solution for you!
Dimplex’s line of indoor/outdoor heaters are the perfect way to extend your outdoor season. Available in 1500W, 1800W, and 2200W, they work in a variety of spaces and go from cold to full power in 8 seconds. They’re ideal for balconies, decks, sunrooms, and any outdoor living space.
The heaters come in three settings and have a remote control, so you just need to sit back, relax, and enjoy. The heaters are water tight and are built to withstand temperatures up to -40 C, so they are the perfect match for our Atlantic Canadian climate!
Learn more about the Dimplex indoor/outdoor heaters in the video below, and to find a location near you that carries Dimplex, head to our Where to Buy page!
Summer may be over, but it doesn’t have to feel like it! Dimplex’s heaters will have you enjoying your outdoor living space well into the fall.
For more stylish light fixtures, heating solutions, and designs, make sure you’re following us on Instagram and Facebook!
Sustainable, minimal, modern, innovative- these are just a few of the words that come to mind when we think of our newest lighting line, aaline. We love not only their beautiful, Canadian-made products but also everything this company stands for, and we’re so excited to be repping them to our Atlantic Canadian market.
This year, we made a commitment to focus our efforts on sustainability (including our expansion into solar energy), and aaline was a natural fit. Their beautiful line of minimal architectural lighting and acoustic systems are made from 100% FSC certified hardwood sourced from Canadian forests and high-grade stainless-steel hardware. The units are natural and recyclable, with ultra-low consumption and high performance replaceable LED tubes and are ideal for LEED certified buildings.
(As with all of our lines, you can head to our interactive map to find a showroom location near you! Unlike our other lines, aaline fixtures aren’t displayed in stores, but you can order through any of these locations.)
Aaline’s minimal, sustainable pendants bring a soothing feel to any home or space. From a single pendant in a residential room (we love it over a dining room table) to multiple pendants filling a larger commercial space (stunning in a high ceilinged lobby), the pendants make an impact where ever they go.
The pendants are available in a variety of sizes and lighting temperatures and can be customized as well.
Aaline acoustics are made from FSC certified Canadian Hardwood and 100% natural wool felt. With a possible 24 unique combinations, and edge-to-edge magnetism, aaline acoustics opens up an endless amount of personalized configurations with scalable adaptability.
wall plates and outlets from the adorne collection
As you may have seen on Instagram, we got the opportunity to collab on this year’s QE2 Home Lottery! Wadden Electric approached us about outfitting the home with wall plates and outlet’s from Legrand’s adorne and radiant collections, we were so excited to be a part of the project!
Homes by Highgate built the gorgeous lake front home in Indigo Shores, and we worked with their designer, Nancy of Fine Interiors, to choose the perfect plates for the home.
wall plates and outlets from the adorne collection
We chose fixtures from Legrand’s adorne collection for the entire downstairs and the master bedroom and went with the radiant collection for the upstairs. The adorne collection is Legrand’s designer wall plate line, and the plates are available in a wide range of colours and metals. They are absolutely stunning and a true decor piece.
wall plates and outlets from the adorne collection
The radiant collection is Legrand’s screwless wall plate line, and they offer a sleek modern look at a lower price point than the adorne collection.
wall plates and outlet from the radiant collection
Both collections offer a variety of cool features including USB outlets, wifi lighting, and pop out outlets.
wall plate and outlet (with USB) from the adorne collection
wall plate and outlet (with USB) from the adorne collection
To find a Legrand showroom near you, head to our Where to Buy page. Just search “Legrand” and our interactive map will show you every available location around Atlantic Canada!
Our final summer long weekend giveaway is here, and we’ve teamed up with some of our favourite local businesses to bring you our most epic giveaway yet. ✨
One lucky winner will receive: 1. 1 YEAR membership to R Studios 2. A private sip and sweat with you and 20 friends with R Studios owner, Connie McInnes 3. Some @dalslighting bulbs (those awesome colourful lightbulbs you’ve seen us share all over Instagram!) 4. A fancy hair dryer from from Dime Salon (value $250), AND 5. A custom illustration of one or two people, professionally printed by Elena Camille Creates.
It’s been a hot minute since our first local influencer round up, and since then we’ve gotten the opportunity to work with so many more amazing NS based bloggers and decorators. There is so much talent here, and it’s been so much fun getting to collab with these amazing creators.
Today we’re recapping just a few of the influencers, projects, and products we’ve gotten to collab on over the last year. There were too many to fit into one post, so stay tuned for Part II!
Looking for any of the products we mention in today’s post? Check out our Where to Buy page for all the details.
THE WILD DECOELIS
Katie-Rose and her family recently reno-ed their kitchen, and they wanted the perfect wall plates to go with their new look.
We set them up with the white wall plates and outlets from Legrand’s adorne collection, and we think they look simply stunning against their new subway tile.
We’ve had the chance to work with Rebekah, of DIY Mom, on a few different projects, and in our latest collab we helped to supply light fixtures and wall plates for her new Air Bnb in Halifax’s North End.
We’ve been able to work with Kimi, of Indie Home, on a few fun projects this year, most notably on her front door makeover giveaway!
Kimi chose the Sag Harbour fixtures from Hinkley Lighting for her front door, and we just love how it came together.
We’ve been a fan of Katelyn’s art for a long time know, so we jumped at the opportunity to work with her! Kate and her husband Jerry have spent the last year completely renovating a new A-Frame, and set them up with two of the Asime pendants from Mitzi.
We had so much fun teaming up with Sweet Pea Boutique on a giveaway this spring. We outfitted all of the shops outlets and switches with plates from Legrand’s adorne collection, including the antique bronze plates by their entry way.
Hey guys, hope everyone has been having a great summer and has been enjoying all of this amazing weather we’re getting!
This week, we’ve got our second long weekend giveaway of the summer, and it is a good one!
We’re are so excited to have the opportunity to collab with Denika of DC Woodworks for this giveaway! As we’re sure you know, Denika is an amazing woodworker based in HRM, and you can’t scroll through Instagram without seeing her creations popping up in decor photos around the city.
We asked Denika to create a side table that includes on of our our radiant furniture power centers. These power bars can actually be built into furniture- you may have seen them under restaurant bars or in hotel headboards- and Denika has built this one into the drawer of the side table so you can charge your phones and devices without any clutter.
We are obsessed!!
One lucky winner will receive a custom built side table from Denika of DC Woodworks, complete with our radiant power furniture bar, valued at $425!
We have an exciting new product line that is the perfect fit for the summer heat! One of our lighting lines, Hinkley Lighting, recently acquired Regency Ceiling Fans, and we are very excited to now be repping this stylish indoor/outdoor fan line.
Regency offers a wide range of ceiling fan styles, available for both indoor and outdoor, so you can find the perfect fit for your home decor. Indoor fans are a staple in many homes, but outdoor fans are a little less common. How luxurious does it sound, though, to lie out on your back deck while you stay cool with an outdoor ceiling fan? Sounds like summer paradise to us!
Regency Ceiling Fans is available anywhere that Hinkley Lighting is carried. To find a showroom near you, simply search for Hinkley Lighting in our interactive map.
Regency Ceiling Fans offers a number of unique features, from uplighting to energy efficiency, and so much more. Let’s take a look at some of the features that sets this line apart.
Regency’s outdoor fans are available in both damp and wet location options. Damp location fans are designed to be used in covered areas and can handle a lesser degree of moisture, while wet location fans can handle direct contact of rain or spray.
To create the perfect ambient lighting, Regency offers a line of uplight fans, which has a light aimed upwards at the ceiling, rather than down like a traditional fan. Some of the models have downlights as well as uplights, giving you complete lighting control.
Not just for the summer! Did you know that indoor ceiling fans can actually help to keep your home warm in the winter? During the summer, you want your fan going counterclockwise to create a cooling breeze. in the winter, you can operate your fan at a slow speed in the opposite direction to redistribute the trapped warm air into the room.
Buying made simple Regency takes the guesswork out of choosing the right fan with their comprehensive buying guide. Of course, any of the showroom staff can help you in-store, but if you’d like online support, their guide will help you to find the best option for you.
To shop the Regency line, head to our Where to Buy page and search for Hinkley Lighting (Regency’s parent company)!
And for more gorgeous fixtures and lighting inspo, make sure you’re following us on Instagram and Facebook!