EDMONTON — Alberta Premier Rachel Notley says she wants progress soon in the impasse between her province and British Columbia over the Trans Mountain pipeline or she will ratchet up the pressure.
“We’d like to see some evidence of progress next week or you will hear more from us about other strategies that might be going forward,” Notley said Friday.
“(In the meantime) we’re giving everybody space to have conversations.”
Notley said she wants B.C. to reverse its decision to ban increased shipping of bitumen off its coast pending a review of spill safety measures.
Alberta believes the move will effectively kill Kinder Morgan Canada’s pipeline expansion, which the province deems critical to getting a better price for its oil.
Federal officials are meeting with their counterparts in B.C. to find a solution to the dispute, which is now in its third week.
Notley says the federal government — not B.C. — has the final say on what is transported through interprovincial pipelines.
She has already ended talks to buy more electricity from B.C. and has stopped the import of that province’s wine into Alberta.
She has also struck a 19-member committee to find ways to put further pressure on British Columbia.
Notley said she likes B.C. wines, but the issue is about fairness.
“I like that wine, really I do,” said Notley. “But I also know a lot of British Columbians who like to drive their cars, who like to fly in planes when they go on vacation or work, and who also like to heat their homes using Alberta energy products.”
Transportation bottlenecks and being captive to the North American market mean steeply discounted prices for Canadian oil every day, she said.
“Tens of millions of dollars of Canadian wealth evaporates,” she said. “That wealth reappears south of the border in Donald Trump’s America.
“Why, why would we do that? What kind of country operates that way? Not our country. It shouldn’t be our country.”
When I worked at an advertising agency as a junior account executive (or “suit”) responsible for managing accounts, we had a client who didn’t like any of the ad copy our creative team had presented for a certain ad. And the publication deadline was literally hours away. As a “suit” versus a “creative,” I still took it upon myself to write some ad copy, which my boss reluctantly shared with the anxious client, who loved it.
My copy won the day for the agency, but made my boss look bad. It appeared that he had lost control of the situation by letting me solve the problem instead of having the creative team create the ad. My relationship with my boss never recovered.
Most organizations preach a “credit where credit is due” policy among employees. Management often rewards individuals for coming up with cost-saving improvements and other ideas about how to make the organization a better place to work and more profitable. The environment can become competitive with everyone vying for promotions, pay increases and the favour of senior management. Egos will almost always be in play, as with the ad agency where the question of who actually solved the client’s creative challenge became more important than the fact that the agency finally fixed the problem — and kept the business.
If its immediate and positive impact is obvious, your boss may be more inclined to use it.
When presenting an idea to your boss, it’s wise to consider six things:
Best for you or the business
Is your idea based on solving an existing problem or building on an opportunity that will help your business? If its immediate and positive impact is obvious, your boss may be more inclined to use it. However, if it appears to promote your best interests first, then rethink sharing it.
Assess the risk level
Is your boss on solid ground or is she being watched closely due to lacklustre performance? If it’s the former, she may be willing to try out your idea as she can afford to take a risk. If it’s the latter, ensure that your idea is essentially bulletproof (largely risk free) and will make her look good.
Timing is everything
Timing the sharing of your idea is just as important as its benefits. Trying to get your boss’ full attention in pressure-filled moments will be difficult. Even worse, you may irritate him with your lack of sensitivity to his stress. Rather, arrange to meet for coffee in a relaxed setting and give him several scheduling options. Based on his schedule and mood, he may unexpectedly say, “I am free now. Let’s talk.” Agree to meet then and there only if you are fully prepared.
In my enthusiasm, I have presented a “half-baked” idea only to be asked to come back with the answers I should have prepared. (I felt the wind leave my sails when I had to go back a second time.) Not thinking through key details reduces the chances of him liking your idea and can hurt your credibility, which can be hard to restore.
My success in pitching an idea to a boss or client has always come from covering the details and my confidence in my idea. My body language reflects this confidence. Rather than taking a “take it or leave it” stance, I weigh her business role, personal likes and dislikes as well as current state of the organization or business.
Consider your organizational position
Instead of suggesting that my idea is a natural and can’t-miss strategy for our organization, I say something like, “I’ve spent some time considering this idea and I’d appreciate your thoughts on how you see it benefiting our organization.” If you are presenting to a boss who is preoccupied, consider saying, “I appreciate your time and will be concise. Let me begin with the what, when, why and how behind my idea.”
Justify and walk away
After covering the details, close by offering a succinct summary of the idea and its benefits. Here’s an example:
“Our business is growing so fast that we have more clients than account people to manage their needs. Clients have complained about dealing with a different account person every time they contact us. I suggest that we designate one team member only to manage specific client files and act as their contact person for the long term. That way, our team members can focus on certain clients who will save time while building a deeper relationship with each team member. This will lead to increased sales as our team members get to know clients’ needs more fully.”
Then, go silent and let your boss think. Avoid the temptation to say, “Well?” or “What do you think?” Silence is a powerful negotiating tool. And you will appear less anxious if you curb your enthusiasm for a response.
By seeking your boss’ input, you are respecting his role in helping to ensure the success of the business, which is important to your ongoing relationship. If your pitch goes well, he may ask you to present to those higher in the organization. Again, remember to give credit where credit is due, especially when your boss listened carefully and offered ideas early on that make your idea even better.
Corus Entertainment cut nearly 80 jobs, mostly in traditional TV production, at Global News newsrooms across Canada as part of a restructuring geared toward boosting online coverage.
Global News will add about 50 new positions, mostly journalists who will file for new, local versions of the company’s news website in Ottawa, Kitchener, Guelph and Barrie, the company said in a story posted on Global News online. The company already operates 18 local websites.
“With digital platforms, our audience no longer is tied to just the locations where we have TV and radio licences, so we will be adding journalists to cover local news in markets where we see opportunity created by the recent closure or consolidation of local newspapers,” said Troy Reeb, senior vice-president of Global News and Corus Radio.
Employees who lost their jobs and qualify will be given the opportunity to apply for the new positions, the company said.
The company also plans to expand its international content and launch a podcast production team.
Unifor, a union representing some Global employees, said 69 of its members who worked as reporters, anchors, camera operators, control room staff, make-up artists and other production crew lost their jobs.
In Vancouver, 21 employees — the most of any local operation — were laid off, Unifor said.
In Halifax, the studio will no longer produce the Nova Scotia and New Brunswick evening news, said David MacPherson, president of the Maritimes unit of Unifor local M1, which represents workers at global.
It will be anchored and broadcast from Toronto as of Monday, he added.
“Out studios will be empty after the morning show ends at 9 a.m.”
Watering down of obligations ‘proving disastrous’: Unifor president
The company’s broadcast revenues continue to shrink, Unifor said, and the outlook is bleak if the government fails to act now. It called on Canada’s broadcast regulator to make strong local coverage a binding condition of having a license.
“The CRTC paved the way for the cuts announced today by watering down the obligations for big media companies like Corus to protect local news and it’s proving disastrous,” said Jerry Dias, Unifor’s national president, in a statement.