Success Stories

I have had several coffees with Neil and I still marvel at his ease in identifying and defining the challenges and opportunities that I wrestle with daily.  He has a knack for describing the complexities of my business in very simple and concise terms.  To say that he then guides you to options and a solution is an understatement – it feels like you are shot there through a cannon.  You arrive at a clear and logical goal at break-neck speed.

I guarantee that you will leave your coffee engaged, inspired and armed with a roadmap to success.  The plan will be broken into bit-sized chunks and, be assured, Neil will hold you accountable for perfect execution.  If you listen and perform as prescribed, you will see unprecedented success.  For me it was in the form of new revenue streams, fabulous introductions, and an improved framework to guide my decision-making.

Britt Andersen - Executive Director, The Terry Fox Foundation

David’s expertise in the culture-building process has enabled Fully Managed to become an award-winning brand, enhancing drastically our ability to attract great talent and great clients.

Chris Day - Founder, Fully Managed

Marc approached our issue with ‘beginner’s mind’ which allowed us to see brand new possibilities. Together we reimagined our material and discovered its magic.

The result was a better product that really resonated with our audiences. Marc is a pleasure to work with, has boundless energy and enthusiastically embraces whatever you ask of him. I would definitely hire him again.

Trish Webb - Translink

I walked away from my coffee meeting with Neil with two things: a very clear sense of direction as to where I wanted to go from this point forward, and a very long list of action items that would get me there. It is easy to get caught up in our own world and “not see the forest for the trees”, and Neil has this knack to help people develop and crystallize a strategy. He also, and that’s so very valuable, will offer advice on the very tactical tools and connections how to get there. One of the most productive hours I’ve ever spent!

Corinna Bjornson - Director, Communications Maxxam Analytics

Having worked and lived in several countries around the globe, I have been fortunate to make the acquaintance of some truly exceptional, talented business people. These connections have been invaluable in helping connect to business opportunities, find talent, fast-track solutions to business and personal professional challenges and achieve more results, faster with less effort.

I first met Neil Belenkie over a morning coffee in Vancouver and it was clear in the first 10 minutes that I had just met one of these truly remarkable people. Every interaction since then has proven me right. A superb listener and an incisive thinker, Neil actually can’t help but spin out well-considered, relevant possibilities or people resources for virtually any challenge we discussed. He has connected me to other internationally focused business people, connected others to me, shared his considerable network of clients through networking events he hosts and offered insights and perspectives based on his experience and knowledge that have shaved days off research projects. And it all started over coffee. What a great investment of an hour.

Michelle Desreux - National Surgical Lead, Centric Healthcare

I can’t believe the results I achieved after working with Baila. I had a one-time, one-hour session with Baila. Following her advice, I prepared a pitch and only sent it to five media contacts. The result? My pitch got picked up by BC Business the next week and my organization was featured in the April 2015 issue. If you want guaranteed results, I highly recommend you book a session with Baila.

Aisha Tejani - Social Media Strategist and Digital Content Writer

Our chats gave me insight into how to grasp thinking ‘bigger’, inspiring me to go boldly after Chinese resources and investment for my company.  As a start, he offered a connection to a trusted interpreter whom he’s personally used to facilitate multimillion dollar deals in China.  He also offered constructive feedback on my pitch deck, and insights into building company value by carving out more discrete milestones.

Andrew R. Tait - President and Director, Tait Laboratories Inc.

Over the course of 16 years, Greg and I grew Tri-Arrow Industrial Recovery Inc. to become the leading hazardous waste management company servicing Western Canada.  We exited the business by means of a sale of a high multiple to one of the largest US Publicly Traded Companies in this space.

Greg has a keen sense of entrepreneurship, customer centric focus, and proven ability to help improve business efficiency  in cutting  costs, streamline operations, improve management systems, to quickly grow revenues into new markets, and  most importantly improve the bottom line. Greg’s skills and experience to collaborate will provide a winning combination.

Herb Locke - President, Tri-Arrow

Thank you (David Reeve) for your continuous leadership, mentorship and dedication. I grow personally each day just being around you and you truly have a ton of character.

Ken Sim - Founder, Nurse Next Door

Our coffee was very productive, you connected me to a key recruit who has joined my team!

If you think you’ve got a better mousetrap and nobody, not even the mouse, is paying attention you might want to check with Marc to figure out how to spread your gospel. And, he’s a lot of fun.

Dave Wilmot - TEC Canada

Social media changes the way how people connect with each other. We love to search new ideas, new solutions and new business partners online – our time is precious and Internet has so much to offer! No difference for me, I thought I can figure everything else online…..until I met Neil for coffee.

I didn’t know who Neil was before our coffee appointment. All I know is I got stuck with my ‘what’s next’ question – Internet can only help my ‘imagination’ but it can’t help my ‘due diligence or execution’, I was frustrated with myself.

I mentioned my frustration to a trusted advisor of mine, who is one of the well-respected CEOs in Vancouver. She give me Neil’s name and told me ‘Neil is an excellent person for brainstorming!’

Coffee with Neil is truly brainstorming – a high intensity one! We bounce back ideas, we took the ‘rose coloured glasses’ off our ideas and challenged each other on operational details. Neil gave me suggestions based on what he has seen and what he has done. I am impressed with his experience, his brain power, and his broad business connections! I remembered how excited I was after the coffee – I quickly narrowed down many ideas to just 2 ideas, It helped me stay focused for further due diligence prior to implementation.

Coffee with Neil made me realized how important human interaction is. A highly efficient interaction, like having coffee with Neil, will actually save a lot time from navigating the Internet and what is the value of sharing business connections? Priceless.

Diane D

In his book entitled “The Tipping Point”, Malcolm Gladwell describes “Connectors” as people who “link us up with the world…people with a special gift for bringing the world together”. Neil is a Connector.

When he and I met for coffee earlier this year for a conversation about introductions to quality business people that he knows, not only was he gracious with his time and fully open to connecting me with great people in his network, nearly every single person Neil introduced me to was both thankful for the introduction and open to meeting with me.

This certainly speaks volumes about the quality of human being that Neil truly is and I am grateful for the relationship that we have built.
Thanks again Neil.

JASON BOUDREAU CFP, CLU - VELA Wealth Management Inc.

Over coffee, Neil has the been the one that asked “what if” in a way that led to game-changing solutions.  He is the business equivalent of bringing a fresh all star player to your team, probing and exploring problems with a shot of much-needed energy!  Sometimes you need a different vantage point to find a solution; a fresh idea or input from someone you don’t know or outside your industry, and that’s where Neil adds great value.

He’s a networking powerhouse and truly passionate about helping people connect, so he has this amazing ability to make an introduction or put you in touch with people in a way that can result in extraordinary strategic partnerships.

Dave Wallace - Chief Development Officer, Porchlight Developments

Marc is an amazing creative director. He is able to combine wild, off-the-wall creativity with a business-like perspective on the “thrill of the hunt” and the ultimate point that all advertising creative is in the service of selling more product. In my opinion, Marc is a compelling combination of the practicality of John Caples, the creativity of Bill Bernbach, and the business perspective of Leo Burnett. Marc is at the forefront of new trends.

Grad Conn - Microsoft

It is with pleasure that I highly recommend Neil Belenkie’s The $2000 Coffee. Neil’s ability to simplify and break down seemingly complex business issues at hand allows me to make strategic decisions to move forward.

I come away from the meeting very motivated, with a clear strategic direction for the company with actionable steps. Neil is also well connected with experts in various areas, and made immediate introductions to the expertise we need. It’s one of the most valuable coffee meetings I’ve had in years.

Donald K. Chu - BenefitDeck Consulting Ltd.

Baila, as an expert in what you do, you always hit the nail on the head! I highly recommend those looking for more media exposure connect with you and the programs you provide – huge value.

Anne Graham - Profit and Growth Expert, #1 Best Selling Author

Neil has the unique ability to quickly see through problems and grasp opportunities. He helps you to quickly clarify your thoughts and/or concerns by asking insightful probing questions. He then uses his extensive knowledge, experience and intellect to help guide you to an effective solution – it is a special gift.  Once done if needed, he then goes even further by helping connect you with one of his many contacts to further assist you with getting the job done. A recent example of this was his helping me to achieve our expansion plans, by listening to our goal description, learning the key components which were required, and then putting me in touch with the right person to help us achieve them.

Neil is an innovative, ethical business professional and I highly recommend him to assist you in any important task. He is also a great guy, which makes dealing with him even more beneficial and enjoyable. Thank you Neil.

Paul Rex - Vital Sante Technologies (Medical Aesthetics)

I have had the pleasure to work with and on behalf of Greg Wright for close to 18 years. In that time I have never worked with a more passionate, competent, and integral person. Greg’s commitment to excellence is second to none. His drive to succeed for himself, his family, and the people around him is untouchable. His ability to work with all levels of business, from the ground level to the executive level is what puts him apart from anyone else.

Kevin Swinden - President & CEO, Global Hazmat

Within minutes of sitting down with Neil – I was more excited about my business than ever before. Neil brings an approach rarely seen in the business world today – he cares. His passion and expertise are easily fed off of, and not only did I leave the meeting driven to fulfill these new ideas – I was confident in my own creative processes that much more. I can’t thank Neil enough, and I look forward to our next coffee!

CJ Summers -

Neil saved us millions dollars by warning us away from an erroneous product development path.  Additionally, he provided other highly valuable insights relating to procuring private investments which I still use today. And, the coffee was great.  My most genuine thanks, Neil.

George Hoffmann - Co-founder and CEO, Network Immunology Inc.

The $2000 Coffee is more than just a coffee.  It’s more than just a consult.  For me it was a strategy session with ammunition and a fast tracked networking bridge.

If you are considering using the service then you already need it.  Just buy the coffee and caffeinate your business.

Ivan Hayden - CEO, Frostbite Pictures

Linda Bilben is an incredibly accomplished crisis and issues management professional. I have worked with Linda on numerous issues and her ability, calm and decisiveness cannot be understated. We have worked on issues ranging from reputation management to loss of life and only her media relationships and tough, clear direction have kept situations from moving out of control. Linda’s counsel is wise, reasoned, strategic and always manages to reflect the organization she is representing. I would highly recommend Linda for any crisis or issues management.

Robyn McVicker - Director of Marketing and Communications, Vancouver Airport Authority

As an entrepreneur, I created my business from nothing. Annacis Waste Disposal was a gradual evolution of growth and opportunity. To my frustration, inefficiencies would enviably work their way into my organization and I often would not always be able to see them. Problems right before my eyes would be missed.

One day during a conversation with Greg Wright, I voiced my frustration with the day to day running of my business. He was sympathetic and offered to spend a day with me and asked if I would be open to him looking at my day to day operations and financials. We talked more about what he would be looking for and I agreed.

Greg Wright spent one day in my office then presented me with a list of items that he recognized as problems that needed immediate attention. They were easy problems, but, I did not see them. I remedied the problems and improved my financial bottom line. I highly recommend Greg’s knowledge and insight.

Paul Antoniou - President, Annacis Waste Disposal

I’ve worked with Linda on a number of crisis and issues management situations in the past.

I’ve found her to be professional, insightful and thought provoking.  She is not afraid to ensure all items are on the table for discussion, but does so in a respectful and ‘team first’ method.

This is exactly the kind of approach that is needed when situations are sensitive or delicate.

Ultimately, there is an added level of confidence to manage a situation when Linda is assisting.

Randy Friesen - Chief Operating Officer, Wardell International

Marc is creatively brilliant, with an impressive mastery of storytelling and influencing listeners. He takes difficult concepts that I’ve seen startup founders/CEOs struggle with for years, and expresses them in colorful sound bites that engage and captivate the audience.

Erin Athene - Entrepreneur In Residence, VIATeC

The most valuable cup of coffee you will ever buy!

Alan Shopland - Shopland Projects LTD

I started a new business in Vancouver, meeting with many people to try and expand my network but I wasn’t gaining much traction. Fortunately, I was introduced to Neil through a mutual associate in 2014. I’ve worked with intelligent people throughout my career and was immediately impressed with Neil’s approach to business and solving issues. Neil is a true visionary who helped me identify what my goals, gaps and potential wins are for my business.

Neil is very well connected professionally and is not afraid to share his network with his clients. Neil introduced me to a number of excellent people who helped me grow my business. I still catch up with Neil over coffee occasionally to hear his thoughts and to run ideas by him. Neil is an excellent listener, coach, and results driven professional who is a an asset for any business to have.

Mike LaRose - Consultant, Vancouver BC

Within minutes of sitting down with Neil, it was apparent that he is full of wit and exuberant energy. I left very impressed with the interaction, full of inspiration, and items to action. His advice was thoughtful and impactful, and helped successfully shape my next career decision.

Jackie Powell - Senior Business Analyst, TELUS

I presented Neil with a vision for my company’s growth. Neil very quickly aligned my vision with a grant/funding institution and immediately made an introduction to a leading decision maker at the institution.

The grant/funding institution was absolutely perfect and through Neil’s connection my company secured a grant of $30,000. The grant application process was exactly as Neil presented it to be, simple and impressive in its efficiency. Even better, this grant is available annually; my company and I can benefit from that one conversation every year going forward. I would never have expected a result like this from a simple conversation.  Awesome!

P.S. Neil bought the coffee.

Daniel Gorsic, CEO - SynergyAspen Environmental Ltd.

Neil Belenkie has been a fantastic resource both personally and professionally. Every time I get a chance to sit down with Neil I always come out of that meeting with a golden nugget that I can actually use and get results from right away. He has completely changed my outlook on the way I do business, he is a get in there get it done type of guy which I truly admire. The biggest take away from my time with Neil is that business is about relationships and connecting with people whether they can directly impact your business or not, Neil has been able to connect me directly with individuals that can impact my business and he continues to do so to this day. I would recommend Neil to any business professional that is looking to change, grow, or improve their business in any way.

Evan Wicklund - Owner, Pure Luxe Painting

There are three things about Neil that are evident as soon as you meet him.  First, he is smart.  OK, lots of people are smart, but Neil is crazy smart.  He speed reads hundreds of pages per night and has diverse knowledge and interests in the business world.  Second, he is a connector.  He is the founder of a business networking event that is held regularly and he is an expert at making key introductions to help people grow their businesses.  Third, he has an abundance of energy.  He operates at a frantic pace and will do whatever it takes to get the job done.  His enthusiasm, energy and sense of humour are incorporated in all that he works on.  I have no doubt that Neil can add significant value with just a single coffee meeting because I have been witness to it numerous times.

Stacey Cerniuk - President & CEO, Annex Consulting Group Inc.

Marc is an energetic, creative, pro-active professional who brings experience, passion and results to the table. His ability to offer value on a personal and corporate level is unmatched.

Jeff Hamilton - Blackberry

David Reeve is re-shaping Canadian business. The thoughtful and focused approach he brings to organizations is transforming good ones into best-in-class companies. David is changing the game and his clients are winning.

Brad Bartsch - Founder, Brad Bartsch Consulting

I have known Neil for over 3 years, meeting initially through a networking event during one of my first visits from the UK. Neil has been very insightful in regards to what is happening in the Vancouver market and has provided me with a number of opportunities to follow up on, both in a personal and professional capacity. Neil is well connected and above all else possesses great integrity and I always look forward to hooking up with Neil to discuss our respective new opportunities.

Richard Atkins

I have attended several of Baila’s webinars, as well as seen her speak at the GetSetGo! Summit, and I can tell you that Baila knows her stuff. After using just a few of her techniques I have been very successful at pitching to the media including acceptance into Global Television and Business in Vancouver‘s ‘Ask the Experts’ section.”

Andrew Siepp - Principal Consultant, Telclarity Telecom Consultants

Neil quickly understands the issues and opportunities you face, providing tangible insight and original ideas that are “action-ready”.  With ease, Neil navigates between the hypothetical scenario and practical advice, and always leaves you feeling you’ve received more than you asked for.  He is a true accelerator for your business – but above all else, Neil is a tremendous person.

Jamie Birch

Over the past 5 years I have had many talks with Neil over coffee and I have always left them intellectually challenged and with a lot of “must do” follow ups on my list (not to mention a few introductions and referrals on my phone!).

It is amazing, when I look at the many issues we have covered and the many business challenges we have discussed.

For me these talks have been an intense review of the challenges I have faced in my business and of the potential solutions. I am always leaving the conversation with new ideas, connections and ultimately solutions to the problems I face.

They are indeed the true net-working event, you learn, you connect and you feel invigorated to attack all the issues at hand.

Our little chats over coffee have been a privilege that I always look forward to and I hope they will continue for a long time!

Jens Nilausen - President, JN International Consulting Inc.

My hour with Neil Belenkie has fundamentally changed the way I approach my business.

His completely straight up advice from his impressive experience and highly perceptive instincts cut right to the core of my problem and gave me something instant and practical to go to work on. We talked about how to bill clients and how to generate exceptional client experience.

My service as a management consultant has improved remarkably from this one conversation and I have been getting many more referrals because of it! Thank you Neil.

Sarah Laughton - Stretch Your Productivity

Neil has the unique ability to articulate problems in a way that stares you directly in the face. He sees through all the extraneous information to tell you what problems you need to face and the concrete steps on how to face them. There is no doubt that he has a true willingness to help you and make you succeed.

Jeffery Gao - Student at University of Pennsylvania

Neil’s natural ability to provide strategic insight in a casual setting was a great investment of my time. He allowed me to see opportunity for a new revenue stream I didn’t see before. When I activated it, it would raise the long term aliveness of both my clients and I. As a result I was able to re-direct the freed up energy I had from working harder than I wanted to, towards helping others.

Jordan Birch - Exec. Dir. Everythingitis and Now That's Ugly Society

I instantly felt Neil’s genuine interest to help me succeed when I felt stuck and reached out for help.  He gave me insight on international market development, a 3 year strategy plan, feasibility analysis, identifying areas of risk and opportunities and much more.  The unique value he brings to any consultation is his introductions he provides and to people who are experienced in areas you need improvement.  These introductions have lead me to get unstuck, feel inspired and develop new partnerships growing in ways I couldn’t have done myself.  Thank you Neil always for your insight and friendship.

Kim Carvajal - Co-Founder of Study Buddy Tours