Dec 1, 2002 | Marmot, Winter 2002

Mount Washington comes close to making Canada’s Top 50 List

Mount Washington Alpine Resort has come just shy of being named a B.C. finalist for the 2002 Canada's 50 Best Managed Companies.

The 50 Best program is for companies with an operating budget of between $10 million and $2 billion. Mount Washington’s budget is around $18 million. ” It was a huge process to go through, but in the end we aren’t far enough in our development to be considered,” Director of Business Services Don Sharpe said.

The Canada’s 50 Best Managed Companies program recognizes both traditional and non-traditional companies that demonstrate excellence in management practices and embrace new technology, globalization and a new generation of people entering the workforce. These companies demonstrate the increased importance of leadership, strategy, culture, brand and technology in today’s marketplace.

The program is in its ninth year and is sponsored by Deloitte & Touche, CIBC Commercial Banking, the National Post and Queens School of Business. To be considered for the award, companies must undergo a formal evaluation process, which includes in-depth interviews conducted by Andersen and CIBC. Finalists are chosen based on their ability to provide excellent products and services, a motivated team of employees and superior customer service through the implementation of best business practices. An adjudication panel comprised of business leaders and academic faculty members then chooses the 50 winners.

The interview process was quite involved – the questionnaire they were asked to fill out was 20 pages long – and Sharpe spent two solid weeks gathering documentation to back up Mount Washington’s values. ” The time it takes to gather that information is huge,” he said. “The binders that went with the documents took three, three-inch binders of information to back (the values) up.”

The information-gathering process was an exercise that forced mountain management to pull all of their information into one format. “It makes us go back and explain what it is we do, and where all that information lies,” Sharpe said. There are many people on the mountain who know all about the Resort and its values, but they carry that information around in their heads. “In that respect it was valuable.”

Adjudicators complimented Mount Washington on their plans for the future, Sharpe said, but told Resort staff that they need a chance to execute them first – then their true potential will be revealed. In a year and a half to two years, the judges said, they won’t be surprised if Mount Washington makes it on that 50 Best list.

More from this Issue