Larry Law’s Living Water: Building A Caring Culture (Part II)

[NOTE: Larry Law will be a speaker at this year’s ELO National Forum on Nov 30, 2021.]

This is the second of two blog posts. 

According to Larry Law, the competitive advantage of Living Water Resort & Spa is the people. From Larry’s perspective, when his employees feel cared for, and supported by the company, they will in turn serve and care the guests well.

Larry explained his approach to managing and hiring employees: “the 4C Principle.”  The 4 C’s refer to character, chemistry, competence and caring. Larry believes that whether one is a good employee depends on whether they have integrity, good character and are a good team player. That person also needs to have the skills required by the position, be at the same pace as the company, compassionate, agree with corporate values and be able to help build a joyful and caring community.

Larry’s approach to his people reflects his own approach to life. Larry’s attributes of care and concern for his employees come from a genuine servant heart and humility. Larry has been recognized by the local community and throughout Ontario for his leadership approach. He shares his life, faith, and entrepreneurial journey in a seamless and unabashed fashion.

For years, Larry has been striving to build up a purpose-driven team with integrity, honesty, fairness, and love. It works the best for a successful business. “It’s not by measurement of how much money I’m making, but by how much is done for other people’s lives – how much positive impact you’ve had that way.”

That comes from extending appreciation, respect, and inclusivity, he says, where staff “have a common goal to unite to serve the people with love. When we all feel that we see the people come in here and feel that.”

It’s not merely words: employees are offered wellness seminars, team building events and appreciation dinners, among other strategies for cohesiveness and cooperation.

“We gain more than money. We help others, and each other. On top of that, we are proud to say that we are helping to build a better community in Collingwood.”

Larry explains that it is everyone’s responsibility to help those around us, as well as the community at large. There are many examples of Larry helping or donating to local charities, including hospitals, libraries, homeless organizations

His commitment to community also extends to providing a free Christmas dinner to 300 underprivileged people each year, while more than fifty staff are volunteering in partnership with a dozen local churches.

The employees feel that they are working for a common purpose – to make the world a better place to be.”

Larry also runs an annual charity golf tournament at the resort each year and provides scholarships and interim employment to students. “The best benefit to youth is to truly experience a good company culture, which does not focus on money as the only goal, but doing good to others with integrity, so that they can spread it out to other companies after their graduation.”

Larry also strives to be a good citizen of the local community of Collingwood. One example is how he recently helped homeless people in the community. The County of Simcoe was starting an emergency program where they would be paying to house homelessness programs across Simcoe County in hotels and motels so social distancing could be accomplished as per the health unit’s pandemic guidelines. All the program needed was a hotel to agree to let them stay.

Larry provided space on two floors of the resort for the emergency shelter to use. He also made sure the resort participated weekly in the shelter’s meal program, provided special holiday dinners to participants, and even ended up hiring four people out of the program to work at the resort and provided them with staff housing when they were ready.

His philanthropy is also felt globally. Larry and his family have spent time in Paraguay funding and building a foster home for homeless children, and he has made multiple visits to Cambodia and China to provide training in good leadership development and education for underprivileged children in Paraguay. Now, Larry’s staff participate to support the children financially.

In an era where people search endlessly and fruitlessly for meaning in life and business, Larry has arrived at a place where he is living business as mission. He is secure in his calling and confident that he is being a wise steward of his resources, from time to money to influence.

His greatest joy is making a bigger difference, not squeezing the last ounce of profit from a business transaction. His business motto comes from Micah 6:8 in the Bible:

“He has shown you, O mortal, what is good.
    And what does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
    and to walk humbly with your God.”