About Us


One of my favourite social media follows is Simon Sinek, a best-selling author and inspirational speaker who shares his insights on leadership and how great leaders inspire action.

Over the years, I have found many of the philosophies Simon talks about in his LinkedIn videos and posts weave their way into conversations I have with friends, colleagues, family members (including my three kids), co-workers, and peers, such as:
  • Don't show up to GET. Show up to GIVE.
  • We need to find the courage to have compassion for others — even those we disagree with.
  • Great companies make their people their first priority.
  • If you don’t understand people, you don’t understand business.
  • Effective communication starts with listening.
  • Leadership is not about being in charge, it’s about taking care of those in your charge.
Simon’s book, Start With Why, is the reason why I started to follow him on social media. Given my journalism and editorial background, this isn’t a real surprise because the why, for me (and I guess Simon) is the starting point in everything we do. Without an answer to the why, we can’t move on to the next questions: How and What?

Starting with why is what I believe Annex does extremely well. Everything we launch, build, design, expand, acquire, and look to improve always starts with why. When I sit back and look at everything we have accomplished together over the past decade, the why is Annex’s lifeblood. Here are a few examples: Amplify, LeadDriver, AdDriver, Omnichannel, DOMO, eBLDR, Grow Opportunity, Work 4.0, Talent Canada, RAStech, our Values, Innovation Day, theme weeks and virtual events.

The fact of the matter is that most companies don’t start with WHY. Why? Because starting with why is hard. It involves hundreds of hours of introspection, inspiration, vision, and clarity.

For all of us at Annex, we are not afraid of a little hard work and exercising patience. Understanding the why is paramount to our success. When we know why we can then provide some inspiration to everyone who comes into contact with our people and brands.

Knowing why leads us to selling ideas, not products. Knowing why leads us to providing deeper content, not just recycled press releases and newswire copy. Knowing why leads us to hosting engaging events, not just sponsored sessions featuring product pitches. Knowing why helps us create processes that improve collaboration. Knowing why leads us to creating meaningful, strategic relationships with industry partners, not just transactional relationships with them. Knowing why leads us to building stronger bonds with our audience members, not just superficial and distant media-reader connections.

Ultimately, knowing why leads us to lean on our 6 core values when hiring, recruiting, training, recognizing and rewarding team members. Without knowing why, Annex is just another media company – which we are definitely not. And of course, knowing why is why most of our Shout & About newsletters end with the following encouragement: do good work and be good to work with.

I think you know why this is important!

Paul Grossinger, Group Publisher / Director of Production
pgrossinger@annexbusinessmedia.com; mobile: 416-564-2513

Virtual Trolls

For more Cyber Gnomes, visit The Wall.

To Laura Aiken, for Working Together
From Michelle Snyder – “Thank you for putting in the extra time to learn and understand the content for FranklinCovey's The 5 Choices, needed to lead engaging discussions and presentations throughout the course. The added bonus is you did it from the perspective of the editorial role, customizing examples so tasks could easily be put into practice.”

To Monica Dick, for Being Agile
From Monica Ferguson – “Most mornings we add an article from The Conversation to the CMO site. A stock photo is always required. Upon emailing Monica with a select image, almost instantly the downloaded file is in my Inbox, every time. The consistent prompt action is incredibly appreciated and makes mornings and getting the daily newsletter out a breeze. Thank you Monica!”

To Allison Krouse, for Working Together
From Catherine Giles – “Thank you Alison! CFF is currently running a themed week, which involves a ton of eProducts and a ton of proofs. She was so patient with all our changes/last minute additions and was integral to the team. Really appreciated the hard work and positive attitude!”

What's Working

Content Weeks In Action
The seventh annual Dust Safety Week kicked off on this past Monday, with five days of focused content for keeping operators and operations safe. Canadian Biomass and Canadian Forest Industries traditionally pair up to produce this popular theme week, which has established itself as an anticipated resource for industry. This year brought Pulp and Paper Canada into the mix and has generated almost $10k in digital revenue.

Canadian Firefighter also hosted a content week this week, with its 2nd annual Training Week. Audience members enjoyed content focused on hot topics, tips and tactics to complement and inspire their training regime.

Remember, content weeks offers focused content, including (but not limited to) daily eProducts, a dedicated landing page, videos, podcasts, new and evergreen stories, and a lot of social media activity. Not to mention sponsorship revenue!

A Wallpaper Resurgence
On July 1st, Annex launched a collective effort across all of our brands with the goal being to close the gap on our annual digital revenue targets. Our Wallpaper Contest, which runs till October 31st, has helped 19 of our websites completely sell out its wallpaper ad inventory from July to October 2023. In fact, more than 85 per cent of our website have wallpaper ads booked during this time period. This collective focus on wallpapers provides us with a good jump on our digital revenue targets as we move into Q4.

Wild Teamwork
On October 26th, our aviation and fire brands are teaming up to host the Canadian Wildfire Conference. Formerly known as the Aerial Firefighting Conference, the brand teams have decided that when it comes to fighting wildfires in Canada, the air and ground personnel would benefit from a day of networking and shared education. The event will feature a full day of speakers and sponsors, plus a thank you dinner/reception the night before as a tribute to the air and fire ground crews that have worked tirelessly during an arduous wildfire season in Canada.

Summer Fun for Finance
Yes, you read that correctly. Once in a while, our PC-users need to have some fun too! This past Wednesday was the first ever Finance Fun Day where the team went out to Eco Adventures in Long Point for some outdoor fun. The team enjoyed zip-lining and spent some time with bees with an apiary tour! Also, their collective accuracy for axe-throwing should both impress and terrify you. Thank you to this fantastic team for all their hard work towards making Annex great.

Kristin, Odette, Adam, Steve, Elizabeth, Katie, Cindy, Laura, Megan and Stephanie

Michelle's Covey Corner

Stress is, in really simple terms, the activation of your body’s fight-or-flight mechanism. It is something we all experience, especially in our work life, but it can also be managed. We all manage our stress differently and it is important to find the stress reliever that works for you. Here are three quick ways to calm yourself when your job prompts that tight feeling in your chest:
  1. Exhale Deeply - A few long, lingering exhalations in a row help activate the part of your nervous system (parasympathetic system) that’s the antidote to fight-or-flight—your heart rate slows down and you get some relief.
  2. Engage Your Senses - Sensory stimulation, particularly touch and smell, can also activate the parasympathetic system. Try massaging your hand, neck, shoulders or arms. You can also keep a bottle of essential oil like lavender on hand and take a calming whiff when needed.
  3. Tap - The Emotional Freedom Technique (EFT) is a process of tapping with your fingers on some of the acupuncture meridians on your body for quick stress relief. One of the simplest ways to calm stress with EFT is to tap with the fingertips of both hands, two inches apart and about an inch below your collarbone. Tap firmly for the space of five breaths in and out.
The next time you feel the stress taking over, try one these techniques to calm yourself.