CFIB- CANADIAN FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS

CFIB- CANADIAN FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS Employee Reviews

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CFIB is an excellent organization to work for!
District Manager (Former Employee) –  Niagara, ON7 August 2018
CFIB offers a smart, fast paced work environment. They are very passionate about lobbying for small business and are effective in achieving results. The company has an energetic culture that fosters personal growth.

It was a pleasure working for them!
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Great cause!
Business Development Manager (DM) (Current Employee) –  Toronto, ON11 February 2018
Lots of freedom to manage your own schedule. Very little sales team culture due to geography and a lack a funding for sales meetings / sales gatherings. Amazing resources and benefits for small business owneres
Pros
Freedom
Cons
Compensation is not anywhere near what is promised.
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Official response from CFIB- CANADIAN FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS
13 February 2018

Thanks for the feedback, particularly about the terrific cause that drives us at CFIB. I completely agree that the resources and benefits for members are second to none and I know our District Managers take great pride in sharing our victories and battles with members. You also noted the benefit of the freedom the job allows. This is certainly one of many benefits of working at CFIB, but it should be noted that the degree of freedom can create challenges for those who do not treat the District Manager role as a full-time job. Our new compensation plan delivers on our promises to staff, but only when team members ensure they are holding up their end of the commitment. As for sales meetings, we have made many recent investments in training and coaching our team members. In fact, early today, I spent an hour with 4 new recruits taking on District Manager roles in various parts of Canada. Obviously, as a non-profit association, we don’t have unlimited funds, but our training and coaching is at a higher level than ever, including paid DM orientation in Toronto and regional meetings across the county. Feel free to share any other thoughts directly with me anytime. Again, thanks for your helpful comments. Dan Kelly, President and CEO.

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great place to work
DISTRICT MANAGER (Former Employee) –  Windsor, ON4 February 2018
it was a very results oriented organization with opportunity for training and growth for those that wanted to put the effort forth. It was very driven to success.
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Official response from CFIB- CANADIAN FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS
13 February 2018

I really appreciate you taking the time to provide your feedback on your time at CFIB. I agree that we have created an organization very committed to success – both for our members and staff. Everything we do is intended to help set up a business owner for success. Your note also confirms for me that the investments that we’ve made in improving our training and career building are beginning to pay off. I am really proud of the fact that we’ve found the resources to bring all our new District Managers to spend several days in Toronto for an in-depth orientation. With nearly 200 District Managers across the country, this is not a small investment, but it has really been paying off. We had one of the best years of membership growth in decades and I believe the work we’ve done in improving our hiring and training processes has a lot to do with it. Thanks for your time spent growing CFIB’s membership and influence. I wish you the best. Dan Kelly, President and CEO.

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Fantastic people, culture and cause
District Manager (Current Employee) –  Toronto, ON2 January 2018
Great and supportive working environment. The staff are excellent and you really feel like you're making a difference in business owners lives going to work here every day
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Official response from CFIB- CANADIAN FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS
13 February 2018

Thanks very much for your comments on the people, culture and cause at CFIB. You’ve certainly identified the main reasons we have such a large number of employees who have been with the Federation for 20, 30 and in a couple of cases, 40+ years. We’ve worked hard to make CFIB a great place for strong performers to have meaningful careers. Whether or not our colleagues start off with a small business background, most can very quickly get behind the cause of supporting small business owners (especially after the many curve balls our federal and provincial governments have thrown at entrepreneurs). We have a terrific team and I’m very happy you appear to be enjoying your career so far. In addition to your helpful post, please don’t be shy to reach out to me directly for feedback (positive or otherwise) and your ideas. Thanks again. Dan Kelly, President and CEO.

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Bait and Switch
BDM (Former Employee) –  Alberta15 November 2017
This job required A LOT of energy for extremely little payoff.

The pay structure is confusing, frustrating and full of technicalities that will prevent you from making commissions and bonuses.

Management is tuned out and unresponsive.
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Official response from CFIB- CANADIAN FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS
24 November 2017

Sorry to hear your CFIB experience wasn’t a positive one. We do work very hard to be clear about both the wonderful and challenging things that come along with working at CFIB. It isn’t clear in your review when you started with us, but I imagine it was before we launched our new compensation system for District Managers. Our new system is much simpler than our earlier version, and includes a base salary, commissions for renewals and new business sales and a solid bonus structure for strong performance. We’ve also added an allowance to cover some expenses – all based on feedback that we’ve had from our colleagues.

The job isn’t for everyone and is really suited to self-starters who respect that it is a full-time job. But as the guy who reviews all the pay and bonus cheques, I can assure you that solid workers earn a very good living to support themselves and their families. It is one of the reasons we are proud to have many employees who have been with CFIB for many years. Just this week, I recognized two colleagues – one with 20 and another with 30 years of experience.

As for management, I think you’d be hard-pressed to find a management team more plugged in and responsive. I take great pride in personally meeting every one of our 400 employees every year, regardless of where they live in Canada. All of our management team does the same. Even though you have moved on, I’d welcome any other feedback you may have. Feel free to contact me directly.

Thanks again.

Dan Kelly
President and CEO

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Good Job for University Grads or People looking to retire..
Business Development Manager (Former Employee) –  Toronto, ON12 October 2017
If you are looking to make a career, this is not the job for you. Great for University Grads or People looking close to retirement.
This concept of helping small to medium side businesses is good however be prepared for a lot of rejections. You spend a lot of time on your own. Support is there at the beginning however it quickly vanishes.

Not meeting your sales numbers, Management make's your life like VERY DIFFICULT

100% COMMISSION IS A THING OF THE PAST. NO CAR ALLOWANCE OR VERY LITTLE FOR NEW HIRES.

THE BONUS STRUCTURE IS OUTDATED AND VERY HARD TO MAINTAIN.

TOP MANAGEMENT HEAVY AND LOT'S OF CLOSE FRIENDS WORK IN MANAGEMENT.
Pros
It's like running your own Franchise however your are not paid that way.
Cons
Long hours, lots of rejection, very little support and too much favouritism.
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Official response from CFIB- CANADIAN FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS
2 November 2017

Thanks for the feedback from your time at CFIB. I’m glad you identify with CFIB’s mission of helping small businesses. After our giant campaign against the federal tax changes, small businesses are recognizing more than ever that they need an advocacy organization that has their backs. We’re certainly seeing a nice uptick in membership as a result.

You are right that there is a lot of time on your own in the District Manager position. I know it wasn’t for you, but for many others, the independence of the position is one of the attractive features of working at the federation. While you note the initial support you received, we are working harder than ever to provide more ongoing support and coaching. Of course, we do count on our employees to let us know when additional support is needed. To be in a position to offer ongoing support to our 200 District Managers across Canada, we do need to have a fairly large group of strong managers. In fact, we just added a few new talented managers to ensure we can improve the help we can provide to our new District Managers.

We’ve also made significant changes to our commission, bonus and expense allowances based on feedback from District Managers. I’m sorry the position wasn’t for you, but we work hard every day to make CFIB a terrific place for our staff to build a meaningful career.

Dan Kelly, President and CEO

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Rewarded for success
District Manager (Current Employee) –  Edmonton, AB4 October 2017
I am new but am discovering the way to financial success here is purely dependent upon superior performance. The initial training and subsequent support is there - you just have to accept a largely commission/bonus system of pay.
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Official response from CFIB- CANADIAN FEDERATION OF INDEPENDENT BUSINESS
2 November 2017

Thanks for sharing this feedback on your new role at CFIB. I hope we had a chance to meet at a recent orientation session. One of the parts of my job that I like the best is getting to meet with all our new District Managers when we bring them to Toronto or Montreal for their initial training session. It is a major expense for us, but I find the investment we are making in new colleagues is really paying off in superior performance, as you noted. You are quite right, while we offer a salary, benefit and expense component to our total compensation, commissions and bonuses are a big part of our overall pay structure. We do review this regularly and I’d be pleased to have you share any feedback with me directly. Thanks again for posting this helpful comment.

Dan Kelly, President and CEO

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great for hard close sales person
District Manager (Current Employee) –  Ontario22 June 2017
lots of cold calling - no history on prospects/ past members easily available so can run into former members. federation generally well known and easy to present. you are given and expected to use a sales script. you have to be willing to push hard to get people to buy on the spot- otherwise you are chasing and wasting time following up on people not wanting to join. you would love the people you work with. you do have to hustle to make the targets. you are better informed on important issues
Pros
great mission, lots of freedom
Cons
lots of effort sometimes for little reward, 100% commission-rumors this is changing because of turnover
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Good work life balance
District Manager (Former Employee) –  Moncton, NB5 December 2016
High pressure to meet targets but has great bonus structure. Some of the management have a negative reinforcement approach to managing the reps.
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A great cause, but a very difficult job
District Manager (Former Employee) –  Toronto, ON23 May 2016
Job entails signing new members to the small business advocacy group. So there is a lot of cold calling and the inevitable rejection along with it. The problem is that businesses receive the benefit of membership regardless if they join or not. If you do take over a territory expect either to be asked 'so your the new person and how long are you going to last?' or 'as I said to the last person I'm not interested in joining or rejoining'. So hopefully you will go into a territory will some low hanging fruit, if not, its a real grind.

That being said, it is a very good sales learning ground for newer motivated sales people that can build character and skill. You receive constant encouragement and training to help you succeed. So the people you work with are excellent and really supportive.
Pros
Great support, training and encouragement
Cons
Rejection, poor prospects, 100% commission
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Comment – 1 June 2016

We take feedback from our current and former employees very seriously. We also know that the District Manager role is challenging and is not the right fit for everyone. We admire the work our 200+ District Managers around the country do for CFIB every day, their belief in our mission to support independent business in Canada and commitment to success. We thank you for your contribution while you worked for us and wish you all the best of success with your future career choices.

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Great company, but working for Peanuts
Independent Consultant (Former Employee) –  Vancouver, BC3 March 2016
Great innovation concept, to educate businesses. But will not compensate the outside Reps.
Minium pay structure of $800 a month and hasn't changed since 2009. Commissions based on getting businesses in Great Vancouver Area to sign up as members. 2009 membership fee per year was $350.00, no doubt fee membership has risen since 2009.

The problem is most businesses while they see the benefit of being part of CFIB they won't sign up. Be it the economic uncertainty in the business market are just not willing to sign up.

From what I know and seen there is a high turn-over of independent reps in BC. Every so often one can see new job posting to fill the position.
Pros
Independent.
Cons
No salary, no vehicle expenses, no cell phone expenses etc.
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Comment – 14 March 2016

Thank you for posting your experience at CFIB. I’m happy you’ve noted your support of the basic mission of CFIB in serving independent business owners. I agree completely.
I take all feedback on jobs at CFIB very seriously. As you know, the minimum pay structure is just that – a minimum that is there to support District Managers until they get into the groove of the job. Very few of our colleagues earn that minimum beyond the first few weeks. In fact, our turnover rates were down nearly 30% in 2015 following a focus on recruitment and recent changes to the compensation system. However, it isn’t a job for everyone. Those that like independence, defending a group of entrepreneurs who have few others in their corner and no upward cap on their earning potential do very well. Our employee survey had an over 80% completion rate and we had strong results in most areas of sales compensation (and we are looking carefully at some areas where we need to do more).
I’m sorry that the role didn’t meet your expectations and am happy to have you contact me directly if there is any specific feedback you’d like to share. With 109,000 members across Canada and nearly 400 employees, I like to hold myself accountable to our members and colleagues and would be pleased to follow-up directly. Also, I wish you the absolute best on your future career efforts.
Dan Kelly, President and CEO.

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Work is very Independent.
District Manager (Current Employee) –  Prince Albert, SK25 February 2016
CFIB is a great career opportunity for people who like to work very independently and work on 100% commission. If you work hard you can make a great salary.
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Toughest job you will ever love
District Manager (Former Employee) –  West, ON2 February 2016
Team is dedicated to the mission of the organization. Very challenging goals, but they are not impossible.Like any sales position, the key to success is activity. Amazing to meet so many business owners, farmers etc. you get a great insight into their realities. Direct manager can be hit or miss, but they improved a lot while I was there.
Pros
opportunity to learn
Cons
very challenging goals
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Poverty level salary
Outside Sales Representative (Former Employee) –  Vancouver, BC27 January 2016
I used to work with CFIB back in 2009. What they stood for was great. The only people who made a good salary were the upper management. Was paid $890.00 a month that didn't cover my gas, insurance. Was hard to get clients to join their membership in Vancouver mainland. From what I see, most don't stay on as outside sales due to salary and lack of interest. Was with them for two months and I quit.
Pros
Nothing to speak of
Cons
low salary, lack of interest from the Business community
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Manager of a District
District Manager, Sales (Current Employee) –  Windsor, ON9 December 2015
Visiting with existing members to advise of relevant Lobbying efforts and issues affecting their business.
Secure new members through referrals and cold calling
Pros
Freedom to plan your day as you see fit
Cons
Heavy pressure to constantly bring in new members
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Amazing Place To Work
District Manager (Current Employee) –  Ontario23 March 2015
Being a district manager at CFIB has changed my life, and the life of many of my colleagues here at the federation. For the right candidate, there is no better job or organization to work for. There is a members first culture here at CFIB and it is more like joining a family run business. 60% of the job is meeting with existing members and 40% is adding new small business owners to CFIB. This can be done in a variety of way including cold calling, referrals from members, and referrals from CFIB partners. If you embrace the referral part of the job, the cold calling aspect of the job can be reduced to very little. There is a very good team atmosphere and our members are extremely supportive of the federation. New member generation is a necessary part of the job, but if you are able to work smart it really is not that difficult.

I was told I should expect 55-60K in my first year with the potential to earn more. In a very small rural territory, I have never earned less than $85,000 per year, not including the RRSP matching program and all the other incentives.

This job is not for everyone. There is very little administration and office work involved. If you are not a self-starter, self-motivated, or have a hard time experiencing and dealing with the rejection that comes with selling to business owners, this might not be the job for you. I am sure the hiring manager would be more than happy to discuss all of this with you should you interview for the District Manager position.


All I can say is that coming to work for CFIB was, by far and away, the best career decision.
  more... For the right person, this is a dream job with an organization that does so much for the independent business community and the Canadian economy.  less
Pros
Mission of CFIB, Professionalism, generous compensation based on performance, culture
Cons
some cold calling necessary and rejection. If you can handle both of those, sky is the limit
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Nice place to work
District Manager (Current Employee) –  Northern Alberta25 June 2014
I enjoyed working for CFIB but the only thing lacking for me was advancement opportunities.
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CFIB is a very family orientated organization
District Manager (Current Employee) –  ON6 November 2013
great organization VERY EFFECTIVE lobby group for small business
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Very good position for a person who has a strickly sales mentality.
DISTRICT MANAGER (Current Employee) –  Toronto4 September 2012
The values and cause of the company is great however the old school approach of door knocking to get business is a tough one to do day in and out. Typical day is parking your vehicle in your designated territory and pounding the pavement knocking on independant business owner's doors in hope of getting a moment of their time to do your presentation. This is the hardest and most frustrating part of the position. The interaction with people, the discussions, educating and helping was the highlight.
Pros
the cause, the people
Cons
door knocking, cold calling
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manage 700 members
District Manager (Current Employee) –  NL28 August 2012
meet with cfib members and add new members, lobby goverment to protect the investments of businesses owners and prevent rules and regulation or eliminate rules and regulation that would affect businesses
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3.4
Based on 22 reviews
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