Combining Passion and Business
A Message from Candice Arsenault, Co-Owner and Brand Ambassador, Momentum Design + Print
From an early age I knew I wanted to be “in business”. I didn’t know what that would look like, but I knew I wanted to get to know people and contribute to my community in meaningful ways. Each time I saw someone’s life being touched by a generous or kind act, I would think to myself, someday, God willing, I’ll be able to help people, too.
My first customer facing job was at a grocery store and I loved it! I got to know wonderful people and, most importantly, I was exposed to all walks of life one scanned item at a time. All customers were different and had interesting quirks, some were chatty, some weren’t. I made it my mission each day to offer the best service experience I could for each person in front of me – kind or unkind.
I moved on to Tim Hortons, where I was promoted to Manager quickly and had the opportunity to lead a team and to learn how a business operates - inventory, margins, sales, customer counts - all the stats and functions that make things run. Service was still the most important part. Every act - stocking napkins, taking customer orders, drawing smiley faces on cup lids, encouraging my team – had deep meaning because everything was service.
I moved on to Starbucks and had a wonderful time managing our team. Starbucks corporate culture resonated deeply with me because the customer experience was EVERYTHING! Starbucks’ passion for coffee inspired me to learn as much as I could about the industry and the origins of coffee. To this day, “Certified Barista” is a title I hold dear.
Starbucks is the first place I was able to “cast” people I wanted to work with. Interviews were “auditions” and personality and ability to engage with customers is what I looked for. Some interviewees would sing for me or recite a scene in a play! Bonus points! The point was to hire people I felt would love customers, enjoy serving, and take pride in their work.
I knew if I were to someday be “in business” I had to move on from my comfort zone and grow. A customer and friend who had frequented Starbucks needed a Project Manager for his growing Media Production business, and was impressed with the service I provided at Starbucks. I interviewed for the job and to my surprise – got it! Entering the world of media production was exciting, and the creative team of producers made my day to day most enjoyable. Working together with creatives to meet deadlines required a little finesse and a commitment to our customers first and foremost.
I gained experience working within the print industry, everything from press printing, large format displays and custom signage, to branded promotional products. Every skill I learned, industry terminology, connecting with suppliers, building relationships - all of it was experience toward being “in business” someday.
My good friend Shannon Ackerson (a.k.a. Shannon the Cannon – which by the way, may or may not be her favorite nickname) who I worked with years earlier, had been operating Momentum Design & Print as Sole Proprietor. We talked about someday working together, combining her talent in Graphic Design with my production and management experience. In 2019 we took the leap. The support from our business community continues to amaze us, we are SO grateful every single day for the support.
My passion for serving customers has not diminished over the years… quite the opposite in fact. I am excited to go to work every day and build our business to a size that allows us, God willing, to support people in meaningful ways.