PROFIT/Chatelaine W100

#35

Mandy Farmer

President & CEO

Company Profile

Company: Accent Inns & Hotel Zed Head Office: Victoria Website: www.accentinns.com & www.hotelzed.com

Company Financials

3-year revenue growth (%): 3 2013 Revenue: $10M-$19.9M Employees: 175
Revenue from Exports (%): 4    

Spotlight

What her company does: Runs a chain of six hotels in B.C. ||

Since Farmer took over Accent Inns from her father, she has infused the chain with quirky sensibility (e.g., rubber duckies in the bathtubs). The board and shareholders she inherited have been mostly OK with the changes, but they weren’t sold on Hotel Zed, a 1960s-inspired concept hotel she first pitched a decade ago. “I dove right into selling it, fast and furious,” she recalls. “My partners immediately rejected it.” Only when she stopped the hard sell did she get the approval she needed. “I had naively pushed my ideas without listening to theirs,” she says. “It was an amazing lesson in persuasion and in navigating generational differences.”