Here's why business people are awesome - they're the most optimistic people you can meet. Period.
Yeah, they worry and even complain about tough things are, about the barriers in their way and how they're underappreciated but their actions speak way louder than their words.
Just follow the money.
Whether it's generous donations to their favourite local charities, like what Prince George Motors just did with an amazing $200,000 gift to eight deserving groups, or their investment in new projects, business people show their optimism. Nobody is successful in the business world unless their believe in themselves, their business, their customers and their community.
The best example of that right now is in Prince George’s accommodation industry. The Courtyard Marriott has opened its doors and it's a fantastic new hotel addition downtown. Combined with the Coast and the Ramada, along with a proposed hotel project at Sixth and Quebec downtown, Prince George will be in a great position to host much larger conferences and conventions at the Prince George Conference and Civic Centre (notice how the City of Prince George recently changed the name - even local government is optimistic about future growth!). The willingness to come to Prince George has been there in the past but conference and convention organizers have had to say no due to a lack of accommodation.
Along with the Couryard Marriott, a new Best Western is under construction at Westgate and anew Pomeroy is being built near the Prince George Golf and Curling Club. We're well on our way to having the rooms we need to attract all sorts of new conference, convention and special event business. We'll need every single one of those rooms, along with the ones at the existing hotels, to accommodate curling fans from across Canada when Prince George is named later this year as the host of the 2020 Tim Hortons Brier, the national men's curling championship.
That's what business optimism looks like.
The hotel and accommodation sector is betting on Prince George as a regional hub that will benefit from the bustling economy of the Southern Interior and the Lower Mainland. That kind of calculated bet is for the optimistic, not the pessimistic, based on the sound belief that Prince George is growing and will need more hotel rooms for visitors and temporary workers in the years ahead.
Don't get me started on the 2016 federal census that shows Prince George is only seeing small population growth and we're still at about 72,000, same as we've been for the last 35 or 40 years. Based on all of the business optimism I see every day, not just in hotel construction but residential construction, the buying and selling of homes, the new restaurants and the low unemployment rate, I'd say we're much closer to 90,000 residents than we are to 70,000.
Most importantly, that number is going up steadily. Business people see that growth and are investing their money, their knowledge and their optimism in Prince George.
Cheers, Dean Birks