Chris Baikie, Business Gazette

Lourdes Gant is the VP and director of Manatee Holdings, the company that pioneered the wild geoduck fishery in BC. But she is much more than that; she is a woman with a vision, and it’s a vision different from many of her competitors.

Lourdes has helped shift her company from a traditional authoritarian top-down management approach to a “holocracy”. She describes it as “a system that uses a peer-to-peer operating system that increases transparency, accountability and organizational agility”. The result is a redistribution of authority that encourages all employees to take leadership roles, and it has helped the company be competitive while staying true to its vision of sustainability.

“Businesses must act as stewards of their resources,” says Lourdes. “And that responsibility must be shared by all employees – not just the person at the top.”

Although making the change wasn’t easy, Lourdes asked her employees to implement the ideas and see where they lead. Where it led them to was to a position where it is currently seeking international financing of up to 40% equity, for up to $20 million, to help with its transition from fishing to sustainable aquaculture.

Manatee Holdings has been recognized by Small Business BC as a top 10 Green Business and Top 10 in International Trade. Lourdes has been recognized as one of the top five female entrepreneurs in Canada.

For more information about Manatee Holdings and its investment opportunity, visit www.sustainableaquaculture.ca.

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