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Christine Buhr is president of Shakers Family Fun Centre in Calgary. She co-founded the family entertainment center in 2006. Buhr is an active member of IAAPA and frequent speaker at IAAPA FEC events. She also sits on the board of Entrepreneurial Organization, a global association focused on small business. “I have built my network by getting involved with business organizations that have women who are in the same roles as I am,” she says. “I have been able to collaborate, build friendships, and find women who understand my situation.”
 
 

Thoughts on Women in the Industry

What is the most pressing issue facing women in the workplace today, and how can the attractions industry influence positive change?
It’s hard to pinpoint just one issue, so I would have to say it’s just an overall understanding that woman operate differently than men, and we need to find ways to accommodate both genders so we can enhance our strengths. The attractions industry can help this by understanding where these strengths lie in their organizations and offer flexible environments to bring them out.
 
What is one piece of advice you’d like to convey to women starting their attractions careers?

It’s the same advice I would give anyone starting their career … be engaged and learn about the business you are in. This industry is particularly complicated, and it takes a long time to understand it well.

Creating Careers of Distinction

How do you invest in yourself as a leader?
I am constantly learning … I read a lot of books and see speakers inside and outside of my industry. I also get involved by teaching and presenting my knowledge to others.

What is your most cherished work principle?

I have a few: Never stop learning, keep it simple, and change is the only thing that we can be certain of.

What do you consider your most significant career accomplishment?

Opening up my business in 2006.

What has had the greatest impact on your career?

My involvement in Entrepreneurs Organization, I have volunteered in many roles over the years that have taught me how to be a better business owner and leader. I currently am the Global Chapter Learning subcommittee chair so I get to support all of the  chapters (170  of them in 53 countries) globally with their learning programs.

What has been the greatest challenge of your career?

Learning how to fine tune my business to make it profitable. I don’t think you ever over come it, its just something you do every day.

What was the greatest piece of career advice you ever received?
I'm feeling like a broken record now but……..Never stop learning.

The Future of the Industry

Why did you join and choose to stay in the attractions business?
I find it to be one of the most challenging businesses out there. I always say I feel like I am managing three businesses at the same time. But the real reason I stay in the business is because it is fun.

What makes you most passionate about the industry?
We get to provide an experience where people can participate in an activity together. It seems that we are losing the simple art of conversation and interaction now that we all have cell phones and computers.


 
​​Know a professional we should talk to? E-mail Prasana William, IAAPA manager, digital content and strategy.

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