RDC to host trades seminar

Workshop to help tradespeople learn more about starting their own business during the economic downturn

  • Nov. 14, 2016 8:10 p.m.

On Nov. 19th, RDC will host its second annual Business Basics for the Tradesperson Seminar, where people working in trades can learn more about how to launch and run their own businesses during an economic downturn.

“The Business Basics seminar is a one-day event, where people working in the trades can learn about foundational items that are essential for small business owners,” says Joel Gingrich, Dean, School of Trades & Technologies. “Last year’s seminar provided great information for those who attended, and we’re pleased to offer the event again this year.”

Business Basics for the Tradesperson is provided at no cost for participants, who will learn about small business finance, legal structures, risk management, tax and accounting, employment, sales and marketing. A panel discussion focused on starting a business in challenging times will also provide opportunities for attendees to ask questions of experienced entrepreneurs.

For local people looking to further refine their business ideas, the Transform Your Trade competition provides an opportunity to prepare a business plan and present it to local business leaders, all for the chance to win $5,000 toward starting a small business. The Dragon’s Den-style competition is open to anyone with a business idea to enhance a trade, with the individuals with the top five proposals making presentations to a panel of judges. The event, which was first offered in March 2016, is sponsored by local philanthropists, Jack and Joan Donald.

“Many people working in the trades start their own businesses, but they aren’t necessarily trained to run a business,” says Jack Donald. “In my last year of my apprenticeship program, I took a course in business law, which was offered on a trial basis, and it was invaluable for my career. Joan and I believe that knowledge about running a business is essential for people to have success, and that’s why we’re very supportive of this event.”

Their support includes the $5,000 prize, which they’ve committed to sponsoring for three more years, as well as business expertise and mentorship for the individual with the winning proposal. At the first event, Tim Gorman was the winner for his business proposal, Lube On Service. “Starting a business is much more involved than simply having a great idea. It can be daunting and scary to take an idea from concept to business,” says Gorman. “The financial support has been great, but so has the guidance and mentorship offered by Mr. Donald and the team at RDC.”

In preparation for this year’s Transform Your Trade event, participants will have the opportunity to partner with students to develop the business proposals. “This is a great example of collaboration and learning, with students from the Donald School of Business working with local tradespeople to help them develop viable business plans,” says Darcy Mykytyshyn, Dean, Donald School of Business. “It’s a practical learning opportunity that has benefits for everyone involved.”

“This event is intended to motivate entrepreneurs by providing them with information on business and $5,000 to help them get started,” says Donald. “It benefits local tradespeople and the region, because the more small business owners there are, the more it helps to strengthen the business community.”

Business Basics for the Tradesperson will take place on Nov. 19th, from 9:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at Red Deer College’s main campus. Space is limited, and pre-registration is required.

Transform Your Trade will take place on Feb. 4th; complete details and registration information is available on RDC’s web site.

– Fawcett