time-for-a-change small business program: Capital region

From brand new small business ideas and bootstrapping startups to expansions or diversifications of existing enterprises, Community Futures Capital Region can help with training, coaching, and financial support. So, whether you are seeking to reassess your business finances, refine your customer base, or expand your product or service offerings, take a look at our new entrepreneural program.

Is it time for you to try a new pair of shoes?

Here’s what the Capital Region program looks like

It comprises: 

Entrepreneurship Workshops

From fleshing out your first business idea to strategising the growth of your existing small business, we’ve got you covered with our FREE and ULTRA LOW COST workshops! Click to review the workshop schedule and how to book.

Small Business Coaching

Available as a standalone service or in conjunction with our workshops, FREE business coaching sessions are available in Stony Plain whether you’d like help creating a business plan or brainstorming solutions to a specific issue. Click to find out how to sign up.

Small Business Loans

Already got a business plan and ready to discuss startup or expansion financing for your small business? We can talk about that too. We also have a special discounted interest rate available to those who participate in Time-for-a-Change program offerings. Click to find out if a Community Futures business loan will work for you.

entrepreneurship workshops

From Fall 2019 to Spring 2021 we’ve planned a series of in-class workshops created specifically for those who are making (or considering making) the change from employee to small-business ownership in the Capital Region (Parkland County, Brazeau County, and Leduc County). For the duration of the program we’ll also be offering a discounted rate on our small business loans for eligible workshop participants.

 

In small, friendly classes in Stony Plain, we’ll be covering a variety of topics focused on the practical needs of a business owner, from exploring your suitability as an entrepreneur to writing that first business plan to take to the bank.

And if you already own a small business, we’ve got you covered, too. We have workshops to cover subjects such as: how to make your business more efficient; how to diversify your offerings; and how to plan for future change.

We’ll also look at the core soft and tech skills it takes to run a business. Things like leadership, digital marketing, personal productivity, website 101 and social media skills. So whether these subjects are new or you just need a refresher, there’s something for everyone.

Some workshops are free, most are priced at just $30 per person, which includes light refreshments. Some workshops are also available as discounted packages to save you money. Classes are small – no more than 15 participants for paid workshops – so plenty of time for personal attention. All workshops take place in the Community Futures Capital Region training room in downtown Stony Plain.

 

To book workshops, go to our EventBrite page here, or click the individual links within the description of the workshop you are interested in below.

 

Booking Now:

Featured Workshops: Tech Saturday – Attend all 3 or just the 1 you need!

Tech Saturday: Instagram for Small Business

Date: 15th February 2020, 9 – 11 AM

Cost: $12.50

Click to book just this session 

Click to book all 3 Tech Saturday workshops for 25% off. 

Is Instagram a good social media match for your small business? Come along for this practical session and find out.

This is a hands-on workshop using your phone, so before you come, download the Instagram app so we can then walk you through the set up, account creation, and post creation process step-by-step!

Along the way, we’ll chat strategy, too: why Instagram is a good choice for your business, how to use it as part of your overall digital marketing plan, what a theme is and how to decide how to match it with your brand, and what makes for a high performing Instagram post.

Attend just this standalone 2 hour workshop or devote a whole day to working on your business by also booking our 2 other Tech Saturday workshops: Website 101 for Small Business and Personal Productivity for Business Owners.

Tech Saturday: Website 101 for Business

Date: 15th February 2020, 11.30 AM – 1.30 PM

Cost: $12.50

Click to book just this session 

Click to book all 3 Tech Saturday workshops for 25% off. 

If you’ve still not bitten the bullet on setting up a website for your small business, aren’t happy with the one you have, or far too overwhelmed with the prospect to even think about it, this 2 hour workshop is for you.

Together, we’ll lift the lid on all things web-related to give you the confidence and tools you need to get that website started! We’ll discuss where your website fits into the overall marketing puzzle, and look at how your site can work hard to smooth out your operations, too.

Next, we’ll discuss your development options: when you should do it yourself, engage someone off Fiverr, or hire a bells-and-whistles design agency. We’ll also break down the jargon so that you can hold your own in those tech discussions and not get rail-rolled into paying for functionality you don’t need.

Finally we’ll give you 10 tips you can use to improve your website TODAY! We’ll talk about best practice design, engaging content, and even how to keep Mr (Mrs?) Google happy so you can be found on search.

Attend just this standalone 2 hour workshop or devote a whole day to working on your business by also booking our 2 other Tech Saturday workshops: Instagram for Small Business and Personal Productivity for Business Owners.

Tech Saturday: Personal Productivity for Biz

Date: 15th February 2020, 2.00 – 4.00 PM

Cost: $12.50

Click to book just this session 

Click to book all 3 Tech Saturday workshops for 25% off. 

Do you speed through your To Do List or flounder after item 2? Is a schedule just a general guideline or do you get paranoid if you fall behind by 2 minutes? And how about goals: just for soccer players or are your objectives set for the next 20 years?

Productivity isn’t about jamming as much as you can into the time you have available. It’s about finding systems that work for you as an individual, and that work with – not against – your personality type. It’s about working smartly on the things that matter, making commitments that will move your business forward, and finding the efficiencies that save you money.

It’s also about using technology sensibly, to help you streamline your processes and not distract you with functionality you don’t need.

Whether you want to set some business goals, create a daily routine, deal with that Email backlog, or tackle procrastination issues; or whether you want to use a paper planner or Outlook, we’ll find a productivity system that is perfectly suited to your style of doing things.

This 2 hour workshop can be taken as a standalone session or combine it with our 2 other Tech Saturday workshops: Instagram for Small Business and Website 101 to devote a whole day to your business. Or, don’t you have the time?

Still to come:

10 Soft Skills You Need (to be an entrepreneur)

Date: April 2020

 

Business Planning 1 - 4 (Spring Cycle)

Date: Spring 2020 

Business Expansion 1 - Continuous Process Improvement

Date: Summer 2020 

Business Expansion 2 - Diversification

Date: Summer 2020 

Business Expansion 3 - Managing Change and Risk

Date: Summer 2020 

Exploring Entrepreneurship

Date: October 2020

 

Business Planning 1 - 4 (Fall Cycle)

Date: Fall 2020

More Soft Skills 1 - Negotiation Skills

Date: January 2021

More Soft Skills 2 - Project Management

Date: Feb 2021

More Soft Skills 3 - Goal Setting

Date: Feb 2021

small business coaching

For those who prefer one-to-one help and are serious about their business, Community Futures Capital Region offers FREE coaching sessions for impacted workers looking to start up, and existing business owners.

Available in downtown Stony Plain, business coaching is suitable for those: who have a solid business idea they just aren’t too sure how to get started with; who need to create a business plan; who want to trouble-shoot an operational issue; or are looking at ways an existing small business can ramp up to the next level.

 

Here’s what the 1, 2, 3 of business coaching success looks like:

Come to us with your business challenge and we’ll do our best to create a coaching plan that works for you. Together we’ll agree action steps and set some goals which will move you to a solution in a timely manner.

Commit to the coaching plan: take action and attend any subsequent sessions where we’ll help you stay accountable to your goals. Need a cheerleader? We’ll do that, too!

To ramp up your chances of success, supplement your coaching sessions with relevant workshops offered by Community Futures Capital Region or trainings offered elsewhere.

Business coaching is FREE in the Capital Region and can be booked by emailing Sue at sue@cfcapitalregion.ca and telling her about your small business challenge.

 

small business loans in the Capital Region

Learn about how our small business loans work for you.

 

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Community Futures Capital Region business loans of up to $150k are always available to rural entrepreneurs to support brand new start-ups and small business expansion projects.

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Loans are subject to successful application, and approval is based on a full assessment of your business plan and situation. [Other criteria may also apply].

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For those participants of the Time-for-a-Change program, in the Community Futures Capital Region, special discounted interest rates may apply to your loan should your application be successful.

Are you impacted by the coal shut-down and want to talk about a small business loan? Email Sue at sue@cfcapitalregion.ca and tell her about your project.

 

If you have questions about the Time-for-a-Change program, contact Sue at sue@cfcapitalregion.ca, call her on 780-968-7013, or pop by the office. We’re at 5006-50th Street, Stony Plain, T7Z 1Y4 and open between 8.45 and 4 pm on weekdays.