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QFMA sets conference agenda

 6 November 2017     Michael J. Knell 

MONTREAL – The Quebec Furniture Manufacturers Association (QFMA) will kick-off the celebration of its 75th anniversary by sending its members to entrepreneurial boot camp, which will be held by a senior staff member of the Beauce Entrepreneurship School, often described as an “institution of higher education dedicated to the training and development of future business leaders.”

The association’s annual conference will open for its usual two-day run on Thursday, November 16 with a tour of the state-of-the-art manufacturing plant run by Stelpro, one of the largest producers of electric heating equipment, heating cables, ventilation (HVAC) and electronic controls in North America.

Based just outside Montreal in Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville, the family owned-and-operated Stelpro is highly regarded for its business plan which is geared toward growth, product quality and enhanced productivity. With its 430 employees, the 35-year old leader in the electric heating industry produces 800,000 units annually as well as heating cables for floors at its 216,000 square foot factory.

That evening, a welcome reception will be held at the Hotel Ritz Carlton here, which will also host the conference.

Valerie ParentThe entrepreneurial boot camp will begin on Friday morning. Led by Valérie Parent, a marketing specialist for small and medium sized businesses, the goal of the session well be to aid QFMA members, who are often owners of their businesses, discover strategies to become better rounded and more efficient leaders.

“It’s a different type of experience, another way of learning and understanding issues, providing a wealth of tangible solutions you can take back to your own business operations,” the association explained, adding it wants to encourage members to “share your issues and concerns and the challenges you face with other business leaders. It’s definitely a few hours well spent!”

That afternoon, well-known media personality René Vézina, a leading authority in economic matters and former editor-in-chief of the business newspaper, Les Affaires, will discuss the state of the Quebec economy. Currently, he is managing editor of the magazine Commerce and heard every day on Radio-Canada commenting on the economy.

The education portion of the conference will conclude with a presentation of the Psychology of Performance, given by Isabelle Fontaine, a Montreal-based speaker specialising in the subject. The author of two books – Empower and Le courage: comment l’activer? – she has taught at both UQÀM and l’École Polytechnique de Montréal.

Rene VezinaDuring her session, she will deal with questions such as: “How can you be more productive by putting in less of an effort? How can you protect yourself from energy drainers? How can you discover your untapped personal assets?”  Fascinated by the psychology of performance and influence, she will share her tools and strategies based on neuroscience and the neurobiology of emotions.

Friday’s activities will wrap-up with the 75th Anniversary Banquet, which organisers are promising will be a gourmet’s delight featuring four courses of sumptuous cuisine, made with home-grown “terroir” products and served in a magnificent setting.

On the morning of Saturday, November 18, the QFMA will hold its annual general meeting, which will include a look back on the year’s events as well as the tradition report from Pierre Richard, the association’s chief executive officer; the election of the board of directors and the presentation of the association’s financial report.

The event will conclude with on an inspiring as well as a musical note, with Gregory Charles staging his presentation entitled Seated at the Piano. The Montreal-based performer will be imparting his idea of work, society and his experiences as a Québec entrepreneur.

For more information, click here to check out the conference page on the QFMA web site.

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This HGO article was written by:
Michael J. Knell
Michael J. Knell

Michael is the publisher and editor of Home Goods Online. A seasoned business journalist, he has researched and written about the furniture, mattress and major appliance industries in both Canada and the United States for the past three decades.

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