Startup Canada is, nonetheless, an ambitious project. This award-winning non-profit organization was established to help make Canada one of the leading ‘innovation nations’ through fostering an entrepreneurial and innovative culture amongst Canada’s 2.3 million entrepreneurs.
Startup Canada itself is an economic and social experiment that harnesses Canada’s vibrant volunteer culture and grassroots entrepreneurial spirit. Startup Canada has put into practice Brad Feld’s ‘Boulder Thesis’, wherein entrepreneur leaders, with a long-term and inclusive vision mobilize regular events that connect the ecosystem. Startup Canada has leveraged this model to help to foster 50 Startup Communities to form a Pan-Canadian network to unite Canada’s entrepreneurship community and give entrepreneurs a voice to decision-makers in government and industry.
Today Startup Canada supports more than 250,000 entrepreneurs through its leading digital platforms, startup communities, flagship events and programs to help entrepreneurs to start and scale thriving businesses.
Exclusive Services and Products
As the leading digital platform for entrepreneurs, Startup Canada runs innovative online events that connect Canada’s entrepreneurship community; including, the Startup Canada Podcast with Rivers Corbett, the THRIVE Podcast for Women Entrepreneurs with Komal Minhas, and a Twitter chat called #StartupChats hosted by Lyndon Johnson which trend regularly, bringing entrepreneurship into Canada’s digital narrative.
Startup Canada also runs the Startup Canada Awards to recognize excellence and outstanding achievement in Canadian entrepreneurship and innovation. Through regional celebrations touring across Canada, Startup Canada celebrates Canada’s leading innovators and recognizes a broad range of entrepreneurs.
Each year, Startup Canada runs a flagship event called Startup Canada Day on the Hill which connects entrepreneurs with decision-makers to ensure the regulatory environment for entrepreneurs is not only conducive for their growth but accelerates it. Startup Canada also supports a vibrant network of startup communities and rolls out national programs and events through those communities; including, the Canadian Export Challenge, Startup Finance Bootcamps, digital literacy programs and much more.
The Leader with Innovative Zeal
Victoria Lennox is the innovative social entrepreneur driving the growth of Startup Canada and building a nationwide entrepreneurship and innovation ecosystem from the ground up. Recently Victoria was recognized by the Hill Times as one of Canada’s most influential lobbyists, giving a voice to Canada entrepreneur sector, working with all parties and all levels of government to help create the conditions for Canada to compete and lead on the global stage.
With her ‘collaborate-by-default’ philosophy, her commitment to ‘service before self’ and her enterprising nature of empowering those around her and leading by example, Victoria is one of Canada’s leading public figures in entrepreneurship.
With award-winning enterprises in the UK and Canada, Victoria’s approach to economic development has earned her praise from countries across the world looking to emulate the models she has created. What sets Victoria apart from the crowd is not only her innovative ideas but her ability to match her vision with a roll up the sleeves commitments and hard work to manifest her vision in a way that others have only tried. Victoria has been successful in mobilizing entrepreneurs, private sector investment, and bringing the entire ecosystem around the table to build a shared vision of a more entrepreneurial and innovative nation.
Implementing Creativity at Workplace
Startup Canada promotes creativity and innovation in the workplace by providing a horizontal and open environment wherein employees can learn from each other and its vast network of partners.
Employees have days where they can volunteer in the community, take time to invest back in themselves for professional development and invest in their physical, mental, and spiritual well-being, and by building processes and leveraging tools to promote organization-wide input and engagement and decision-making for the future.
Creativity and innovation within Startup Canada come from its people and its partnerships. It is a listening and learning organization that can evolve with the ecosystem to not only remain relevant but to increase its impact.
The speed of technological change is accelerating, and organizations must adapt to keep up and remain competitive. The rate of technological change is tripping up large organizations and evening the playing fields for new disruptive entrants. To keep pace and to stay innovative, companies and governments alike have the opportunity to work alongside fast-moving startups to leverage their creative potential to stay ahead of and drive technological change.
The Future Roadmap
Startup Canada is becoming Canada’s entrepreneurship organization. Through focusing on supporting a broad range of entrepreneurs to become export-ready, financially resilient, adopt technologies, and build out marketing and sales strategies to scale, Startup Canada is building the capacity of every entrepreneur, enterprise and ecosystem to scale-up Canada’s entrepreneurial economy.