Finding free business advice
First in a 5-part series about where to get free startup help
Roger Pierce, Special to QMI Agency
Your new business will surely succeed if you seek input from different advisers. Fortunately, Canada offers plenty of opportunities to access highly qualified professional business consultants — for free. Here are two of my favourite resources:
Your tax dollars help fund your local enterprise centre, where you can access free startup advice, tools, resources and support.
These drop-in centres typically offer one-on-one business consultations with dedicated professionals, free small business seminars or workshops, resource areas stocked with helpful startup guides and brochures, and free online access to register your business.
Enterprise centres are named differently in each province, find one through your local City Hall or municipal government, or search online at canadabusiness.ca.
Community Futures Canada
An initiative of the Government of Canada, Community Futures includes 269 Community Futures Development Corporations and Community Business Development Corporations (CFDCs/ CBDCs) that provide a variety of services. While services at each office may differ, most offer business information, business consultations and small business loans.
These community-based, not-for-profit organizations are staffed by professionals and are each governed by local volunteer boards of directors familiar with their communities’ needs, concerns and future development priorities. Find a CFDC/CBDC near you at communityfuturescanada.ca
— Startup expert Roger Pierce has launched 11 businesses, co-authored a book and advised thousands of entrepreneurs worldwide. Contact him at NewcomerStartup.com.