Nathalie Slight | Journalist
To start a business, you need both hard work and knowledge--both of business and yourself. 25 young entrepreneurs in the Adopt inc.'s mentorship program participated in a boot camp put on by the École d'Entrepreneurship de Beauce: "Se connaître pour mieux performer" (know yourself better, perform better). Four participants explain what they got out of the experience and what they've added to their professional toolkits.
These young entrepreneurs are the second cohort of the Adopt inc. entrepreneurship contest, of which Desjardins is a founding partner. The program aims to develop the full potential of young entrepreneurs, also known as "adoptees," through training like the 2018 boot camp offered by Desjardins in partnership with the École d'Entrepreneurship de Beauce.
For some of the adoptees, being mentored by an experienced entrepreneur means an additional financial contribution and personalized coaching. This was the case for Karine Foisy, of Veille sur toi, who was adopted by Marie-Claude Boisvert, Executive Vice-President, Business Services Executive Division. "It gives a passionate entrepreneur access to the advice, resources and business events that all young people dream of when they start a business. It's a great way to pay it forward and see young people grow!" explained Boisvert.
The 4 participants
Karine Foisy - Veille sur toi
Adopted by Marie-Claude Boisvert, Executive Vice-President, Business Services Executive Division
Sara Dagenais - Collations santé Vitali-t
Adopted by Daniel Germain, founder of the Breakfast Club
Nancy Couture - Pot de bonheur
2018 adoptee finalist
William Leclerc - Ebenor Percussion
Adopted by Nathalie Bondil, Director and Chief Curator of the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts
The Dynamix personal profile was used during workshops. "Each personality type is assigned a colour. This helps people better understand their strengths and weaknesses. My dominant colour is blue because I like to know the littlest details before I make a decision. By getting to know myself better, I can manage myself better! When I build a team using people with all different colours, I can make sure we all complement each other. It's a winning formula for my company!" explained Dagenais.
Yourself, but better
Nancy Couture is a red leader. "I'm a spontaneous entrepreneur. I'm intuitive and I make decisions based on how I feel. I plan on staying true to myself by maintaining my sense of enthusiasm, authenticity and candour. These qualities have served me well so far. But I don't tend to analyze situations before getting involved! It's good to be aware of what I need to improve; it makes me a better manager," Couture added enthusiastically. Her business is getting ready to take on the European market.
The same reality
William Leclerc, entrepreneur and musician, created strong ties with his peers at the boot camp. "I'm fascinated by how we work in completely different industries, yet we face the same problems, encounter the same setbacks and take on the same challenges." Karine Foisy felt the same way. "I had such a great time getting to know the other entrepreneurs in the 2018 cohort. We all have the same dreams, doubts and uncertainties. My friends and family support me the best they can, but they don't necessarily understand the day-to-day of an entrepreneur," said Foisy, who just expanded her online shop and opened a storefront location.
The importance of teamwork
"By participating in various boot camp activities, I realized how important teamwork is," said Dagenais. "I had to rely on my teammates, especially during a workshop where we had to solve problems blindfolded! It was an eye-opener for someone like me--I tend to do everything myself. Since then, I've been delegating more tasks and focusing on people's strengths. You can't be an expert in everything!"
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