Founder and Chief Executive Officer
Mike Desmarais is the Founder and Chief Executive Officer of SQM Group. Mike has over 25 years of customer experience measurement, benchmarking, and consulting. As a consultant, Mike has experience working with leading North American organizations on improving customer experience. Mike has developed several key best practices that are fundamental to providing world class contact channel customer experience. He uses his best practice knowledge to assess contact channel operations and to pinpoint the 3-5 pivotal changes that will drive real and significant customer experience improvement. Mike is a pioneer and visionary for contact channels’ customer experience measurement of first call resolution, one contact resolution, omni-channel, customer emotion, and retention metrics. Mike has written five thought-provoking contact channel customer experience books (i.e., World Class Call Center, First Call Resolution, FCR Best Practices, One Contact Resolution and most recently One Contact Resolution 2nd Edition). Mike has conducted best practice case studies with organizations such as American Express, FedEx, Canadian Tire, Blue Cross Blue Shield, and VSP Insurance. In addition, Mike is a popular contact center industry thought leader with over 16,000 LinkedIn followers and is one of the top 10 most influential contributors in the contact center industry based on a recent Fonolo poll. Mike is a sought-after speaker for contact center conferences and has a world class satisfaction rating for speaking at those events.
Lara Pow is President of SQM Group. Lara has a Doctorate in Business Administration and a Master’s degree in Mathematical Physics. Lara is a member of the Insights Association, American Marketing Association, and American Association for Public Opinion Research. She has over 10 years of research and analysis experience. Lara has contributed to the research for SQM’s books, World Class Call Center, First Call Resolution, FCR Best Practices and co-authored SQM’s most recent books, One Contact Resolution (1st and 2nd edition). Lara oversees all aspects of operations for SQM’s two contact centers including finance, technology, data processing, and product development.
Senior Vice President of Client Advocacy
Andrea Pow, BComm, is Senior Vice President of Client Advocacy with SQM Group. She is currently an MBA candidate and has her bachelor’s degree in General Business with a focus in Marketing and Organizational Behaviour/Human Resources. Her experience includes research and development of new certification and training programs, developing industry specific training for organizations and managing quality assurance control. She brings over 15 years of customer relations, business and training development experience and her responsibilities include customer account management and business development.
Vice President of Consulting & Client Account Management
Nader Ghattas, BMgmt, is the Vice President of Consulting & Client Account Management with SQM Group. Nader brings over a decade of consulting, corporate asset direction and extensive international business experience to SQM and is currently a MBA candidate. He has an honours degree in business management and started his career as a TSR at SQM, moving on to vocations in investment banking, supply chain management and international business where he developed a passion for languages and a strong commitment to client service.
To Be Determined
SQM Conference & Awards Ceremony Entertainment
Fire & Ice Themed Dinner with Entertainment
Tuesday, May 22nd from 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm
The first evening of the conference is planned for you to enjoy a spectacular Fire & Ice themed night with entertainment. Witness the elements of fire and ice brought to life through ice sculptures, costumed characters, and a thrilling performance from entertainers that will mix danger and delight! We welcome you to come dressed up as fire (red or orange) or ice (blue or white) to join in the fun!
Western Themed Dinner with Entertainment
Wednesday, May 23rd from 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm
Join us for a Western themed evening. Bring your cowboy boots and plaid shirts, and be ready to enjoy a great time! Back by popular demand, the entertainment for the night is the Young’uns. Voted “Best of the Okanagan” 2016, The Young’uns have been a staple of the area for many years. The Okanagan’s most versatile band is better than ever this year with many new songs and mash-ups that will keep you going all set long. Formed in 1989, the Young’uns are a group of veteran musicians that have worked the valley for many years. Check them out at www.theyounguns.com.
Casino Royale Night
Thursday, May 24th from 9:00 pm – 12:00 am
After the gala awards dinner evening, SQM invites you to join us in continuing to celebrate with a Casino Royale night. Double down and let the roulette wheel spin! Enjoy a jackpot experience by trying your hand at Texas hold ‘em, Blackjack, Roulette, Casino Wheels and more! The DJ will be spinning tunes for your dancing pleasure until midnight!