A new partnership between Port Moody's Shop Local founders and the city's WorkBC Centre will give independent business owners a chance to hear from their fellow entrepreneurs in a TED Talk-style event and a series of workshops starting next week.
Dubbed 5 Fun Work Weeks, the series kicks off with Port Moody Biz Talks on Oct. 15, a chance to network, sample goodies and craft beer from Moody Ales and Yellow Dog breweries, and hear from six business owners on the "one thing" that drives their business success.
"Lots of people go into business but have no business background" and are simply pursuing a passion, said Lisa Beecroft, owner of Caffe Divano and a co-founder of Shop Local. "This gives us an opportunity to share our stories and learn from each other's mistakes and successes."
Beecroft said the idea for Biz Talks came out of a conversation with WorkBC's Kristin Vandegriend and quickly snowballed. Shop Local members had expressed an interest in business education opportunities and WorkBC was looking for ways to connect with employers, making the Biz Talks a perfect fit. It wasn't long before they'd planned workshops on branding and marketing, accounting, bookkeeping and human resources.
Celia Chiang of Port Moody Flowers and another Shop Local co-founder said the series are another way of supporting local businesses, which benefits the community as a whole through a stronger local economy, creating jobs and supporting non-profits.
"We're stronger together," said Vandegriend.
The organizers have partnered with Douglas College's self-employment program, as well as the Tri-Cities Chamber of Commerce and others.
Tickets for Port Moody Biz Talks on Oct. 15 at the Inlet Theatre are $10 at shoplocalportmoody.ca.
The series continues with the Business Spike Awards on Oct. 22 and is followed by the three workshops, all at the Port Moody Caffe Divano at 6:45 p.m. Branding and Marketing is on Oct. 29, Biz 101 is on Nov. 5 and Human Resources is on Nov. 12.