Spartan

Dafne Canales Lees presented as part of Innovation Alley's Tech Career Exploration Event the evening of Thursday, November 15, at Dr. E.P. Scarlett High School, 220 Canterbury Drive SW (Canyon Meadows), sponsored by the Calgary Economic Development.

They've asked me to come in and talk about Entrepreneurship to the High School students.

I presented this month at Centennial High and got tons of positive feedback, so the organizers asked me to be part of the showcase tonight.

So glad to help educate our youth on what it takes to be an Entrepreneur and that they should learn everything they can about marketing because that's what's going to make it or break it in the business world.

- Dafne Canales Lees, CEO, Spartan Spark Inc.

Got cash flow problems? It's probably because you don't have a good marketing strategy in place.

Here's a list of resources I'll be sharing tonight.


1. Surround yourself with smarter people

As entrepreneurs, we're experts at what we do, whether that's building a product or service. In the entrepreneurial world "what you don't know CAN hurt you," so you need to surround yourself with people who are NOT like you and who have other skills and capabilities that complement yours.

Tip: If you're good at marketing, find someone to teach you about cash flow. If you're good at implementation, find someone to teach you about strategy, etc. Fill the gaps of your knowledge with great conversations and by having great people around you.

2. Find a mentor

As part of surrounding yourself with the right people, go into the community and find a mentor or several mentors who can guide you. Seasoned entrepreneurs are often willing to take someone under their wing because we all remember what it was like those first several years.

Tip: Make sure that you do your homework. If you're not willing to do the hard stuff to get your business going, your mentor won't want to work with you.

3. Educate yourself

You often won't find the right mix of courses in traditional education, so you need to educate yourself on your own. Read books that are recommended by entrepreneurs, especially those books that have withstood the test of time—those that are classic entrepreneurial books no matter how technology or times change.

Tip: The main library downtown has librarians who specialize in business. Your high school librarian can connect you and find what you need. And remember, if you don't like reading, that's ok; you can access audio books and You Tube videos and follow the same authors to learn their strategies and theories.

Recommended Books:

  • The E-Myth - Michael Gerber
  • Lean Startup - Eric Ries
  • Rockefeller Habits - Vern Harnish
  • Scaling Up - Vern Harnish
  • Traction - Gino Wichman
  • Crushing It - Gary Vaynerchuck
  • All of the Guerilla Marketing Books - Jay Conrad Levinson

4. Join a community

Entrepreneurship is often very lonely as you embark on a path where few people survive! Just check the stats! But don't let that scare you if you have important work to do in the world! You will get a lot of "NOs" and that's ok. Remember, that if your work is innovative or a game changer, a disrupter, you're doing something that no one else in the world is doing, and so not everyone will understand and love your idea. Search out a community of young entrepreneurs or create your own as you find like-minded people.

Tip: Innovation Alley by Calgary Economic Development will have tons of resources. Take everyone's contact info and start making connections. Find groups that specialize in youth entrepreneurship even if they're online; it'll be a great way to share ideas, connect and see that we all go through the same trials and tribulations.

5. Learn everything you can about marketing

One of the biggest mistakes entrepreneurs make is not setting the foundation for their marketing while they're developing their products and services. You need to start from Day 0, so that when you're ready, so too is your marketing.

Tip: Ok, so I know your parents won't let you go to a conference in San Diego, BUT there is a solution to that! You can attend world-renowned conferences like Social Media World and a whole bunch of other ones—virtually! If you can't afford the conference fees, learn everything you can from YouTube.

  Posted: Tuesday, November 27th, 11:00am 18 days ago
Profile PictureWritten By: Dafne Canales

Dafne’s expertise lies in creating strategic roadmaps for companies to grow their business through unique marketing approaches. Her company, Spartan Spark, works with million dollar companies, advising them on how to grow their business by using strategy and technology more effectively.

Through articles, vlogs, training and speaking engagements, Dafne shares her marketing knowledge, showing business owners how to leverage all the knowledge they have and use technology to their advantage to increase visibility and lower their cost of acquisition.


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