Alberta tech sector in early stages of development but maturing

Almost a third of tech companies in the province are led by a female founder or co-founder: survey

Alberta tech sector in early stages of development but maturingThe 2018 Alberta Tech Deal Flow Study released by Alberta Enterprise Corp. indicates nearly one in four companies are earning more than $1 million annually. Findings revealed Alberta offers significant early stage opportunity for tech investors, with 54 per cent of companies surveyed at the Pre-Series A stage and 70 per cent of Alberta tech…

What’s wrong with Canada’s tech sector?

Technology entrepreneurs are locked behind bars of asset ignorance

What’s wrong with Canada’s tech sector?Everybody has a story or two about an exciting new technology that was going to change the world; but was never heard from again. What happens to these great ideas? It’s all very puzzling. But, it does raise a serious question: what’s wrong with Canada’s tech sector? Is there a structural flaw? The short answer…

The entrepreneurial flaw that leaves money on the table

Too often we're anxious to move on to the next great idea. We don't spend enough time turning the current project into real profit

The entrepreneurial flaw that leaves money on the table“We want you to help us get our business ready to sell,” my clients said. “It’s been three years since we started this business and we’re ready to move on.” “Tell me more,” I said. “Why do you want to sell the business? What are you going to do once you sell this business?” It…

Small business confidence improves in Alberta

But CFIB’s latest index shows provincial entrepreneurs face a long list of operating challenges

Small business confidence improves in AlbertaSmall business confidence improved slightly in Alberta in February but remains the lowest in Canada, according to the Business Barometer Index by Canadian Federation of Independent Business released on Thursday. The CFIB said the index bounced back a bit after big drops in the previous two months. “Despite a bit of a bounce in February, we…

How banks can help Canada’s SMEs

They could start by formalizing the treatment of intangibles so (some of them) can be collateralized for banking purposes

How banks can help Canada’s SMEsA  survey of SMEs (Small to Medium sized Enterprises) I once read laid bare the hard facts about running a technology-related business in Canada. On the upside, the ingredients for growth for SMEs were easily identified; they include better access to management, planning, marketing, manpower and product development. What was surprising, perhaps, was the realization…

The entrepreneur’s tricky work-life balancing act

Our business problems are difficult to leave behind, especially when the business is tied to us personally, financially or emotionally

The entrepreneur’s tricky work-life balancing actI was in Jose’s office one morning recently and he asked why I hadn’t brought up the business at hand when we were at the ball game a couple nights before. “I didn’t want to bother you with my problem in your off time,” I said. “I figured I would see you at our next appointment…

Startup leaders optimistic about business conditions improving

They are in growth mode but face challenges in finding enough skilled talent and raising capital: survey

Startup leaders optimistic about business conditions improvingFifty-six per cent of Canadian startup leaders expect business conditions to improve in 2019. But they note challenges in raising capital and hiring talent with the skills needed to grow their businesses, says a report released on Wednesday by Silicon Valley Bank . The inaugural Canada Startup Outlook reports that 31 per cent of respondents to…

Beware of ghosts haunting your organization

I've seen how ghosts can haunt organizations around the world. It wouldn't surprise me if your company was also haunted

Beware of ghosts haunting your organizationI not only believe in ghosts, I've seen how they haunt organizations around the world. It wouldn't surprise me if your company were haunted. In fact, I'd be surprised if it weren't! I even wrote a (almost true) story about a young woman chasing a ghost through a parallel universe located in the ventilation system…

The biggest mistake most small business owners make

We need to develop systems of hiring and monitoring our employees to ensure we have the right people

The biggest mistake most small business owners makeBob was frustrated, stressed and upset. One of his key employees, Keith, had just left to start his own business and had taken another staff member with him. I wasn’t surprised. I’d been working with Bob for several months and had met Keith several times. My impression wasn’t favourable and I had discussed this with…

The painful – and necessary – lessons that losing teaches us

Losing gives you greater clarity and insight, adds a little humility, and builds resilience

The painful – and necessary – lessons that losing teaches usI’ve been called a loser more than once. Often it’s by my kids, who don’t like some stupid joke I just played on them. But I’ve also made a bucketful of mistakes in my time on this Earth and have lost everything from money to employees to elections to friends. I’ve even lost the trail…