The entreprenaction Program
The entreprenaction program has been created and brought to you by the West Island of Montreal Chamber of Commerce. Its’ goal is to support young passionate entrepreneurs by helping them navigate the complex business world and increase their chances of success.
The 3 pillars of the entreprenaction program include mentorship, training and recognition. In order to recognize the dynamic entrepreneurs that stand out in our business community, the Chamber is pleased to offer the annual entreprenaction Challenge where young entrepreneurs have the chance to win a total of $20,000 in cash and professional services.
Rise to the entreprenaction challenge and
submit your application!
The entreprenaction Program
The mission of the entreprenaction program is to support passionate young entrepreneurs by helping them navigate the complex world of business in the hopes of increasing their chances of success. It is well-known that the risk of business failures is highest in the first 5 years of operation so the goal of the entreprenaction program is to provide a tool to help guide and develop our leaders of tomorrow by putting in place a program that has three main pillars; mentorship, training and recognition in excellence. The entreprenaction program will draw on the diversity and strength of the existing business community to help young entrepreneurs avoid the pitfalls faced by new businesses.
So if you are between the age of 18 and 35 years old and have had a business for at least two years, entreprenaction was conceived for you.
In order to guarantee the sustainability and relevance of the program, the Chamber has formed financial and strategic partnerships in the community to bring diverse expertise to the table. The Chamber has also solidified a three-year financial partnership with Desjardins who has agreed to become the program’s title partner. A list of partners (strategic and financial) will be provided for the duration of the program.
Young entrepreneurs now have a program at their disposal that can provide them with mentorship, customized training and/or gives them the possibility of participating in a challenge with interesting incentives. Whether you want to apply for the entreprenaction challenge or interested in joining the entreprenaction program because you are not ready for the challenge or do not yet qualify, reach out to our team at the Chamber and we are happy to share the details of how you may benefit from being part of our young entrepreneurship program.
The success of businesses in all phases of their existence depend on their ability to adapt to the latest methods and technology. While young entrepreneurs may have similar core needs such as HR management tools, finance and accounting, other training needs tailored to young entrepreneurs may be beneficial; management/leadership, networking/communications skills, facilitating access to finance and digital marketing, just to name a few.
Quality training programs and time commitment are typical hurdles for any business owner as every hour away from the office represents lost business opportunities. Under the entreprenaction program, the Chamber will work with young entrepreneurs to focus on their needs and customize training programs that work for them and their busy schedules.
The entreprenaction program will put many resources at young entrepreneurs’ fingertips as many traditional and non-traditional teaching facilities are part of the program including high schools, vocational programs, colleges and universities that are willing to provide customized training.
As an entrepreneur, you are driven and are very competitive. It is this trait that contributed to your early success. However, there comes a time in the growth of most businesses where mentors can play a role to help take your company to the next level. Business mentors in your industry have more experience than you and have likely faced the same issues that you are now facing.
However, recognizing the importance of mentorship is only half the battle as finding the right mentor can prove to be an arduous task. The mentorship pillar in the Chamber’s entreprenaction program helps you identify and match your company with the ideal mentor.
In turn, business mentors may also experience benefits as they may be inspired with new ideas, meet new contacts and learn new business strategies from their mentees.
If you are in need of mentorship or if you are a mentor looking to help the next generation of leaders, contact the Chamber to obtain more information on entreprenaction.
While the entreprenaction program offers practical tools such as mentorship and training, participants in the program may also want to enter the entreprenaction challenge where they will present their companies to a panel of business people in order to win a prize representing a combination of cash and professional services for a total value of over $20,000, generously provided by Desjardins (the entreprenaction title partner) and other Chamber members.
how it works
STEP 1 – Apply Online
Entrepreneurs enter by applying online and submitting a business plan, which will be reviewed by a panel of judges.
Step 2 – Video Submission
From the applicants, 5-7 entrepreneurs will be selected and asked to provide a 2-minute video pitch.
Step 3 -The Challenge Event
The 5-7 entrepreneurs will be invited to participate in a virtual Q&A session with the panel of judges.
Step 4 – Winner Announced
The judges will select 3 finalists who will be invited to the annual Chamber Accolades Gala, where the winner will be announced.
HOW TO ENTER
Submit your application by April 23rd by filling out the online form here.
To qualify, all young entrepreneurs must:
- Be between 18 and 35 years old
- Be Canadian residents
- Own a company that has been in operation for at least 2 years
- Submit a summary business plan (maximum 10 pages) which details the business, its activities, industry analysis, products/services, vision, financial summary and any community involvement.
Each application will be evaluated by the entreprenaction Challenge Grand Jury which is composed of existing and qualified Chamber members.
All members of the Grand Jury must be free of any conflict of interest with participants in the entreprenaction Challenge which will include not having any family ties or any financial involvement in the participating companies.
The selected participants will present their companies to a panel of judges who may, based on the quality of their presentations (which will include a question and answer period), be chosen as one of the three finalists for the grand prize.
The three finalists will be invited to the Chamber’s annual Accolades Gala on June 3rd, 2021 where the name of the West Island of Montreal Chamber of Commerce Young Entrepreneur of the Year will be revealed.
All information submitted to the West Island of Montreal Chamber of Commerce relating to the entreprenaction Challenge will be kept confidential. The nomination forms and their attachments provided to the juries will be destroyed at the end of the process.
Since its inception in 1978, the West Island of Montreal Chamber of Commerce has taken on the mission of encouraging and promoting the development of the West Island of Montreal business community and surrounding areas. To do this, The Chamber has been active in many economic development files touching on transportation, infrastructure, immigration, human resources and buying local.
The Chamber also has a history of creating community-oriented programs such as our Discover the Stars student bursary program, which has been in place since 1996. Since then, and with the support of the West Island business community, the Chamber has handed out close to $900,000 in bursaries. As well, in 2019, the Chamber took charge of the Recognizing Perseverance Bursaries program in order to highlight the sustained efforts by students who have beaten the odds in order to obtain their high school certificates. The Chamber feels it is essential to encourage the next generation, by investing in our future.
The entreprenaction program is another example of how at the Chamber, we believe that:
Strong businesses build strong communities.
For any additional information, please do not hesitate to contact the Chamber.