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Ep. 6 with Jordan McFarlen from Conexus Credit Union / Cultivator

By September 20, 2018July 28th, 2023No Comments

Episode Guide

Episode #125 with Kay Peacy from Slick Business

Episode #124 with Marc Toews from Gateway Web AR

Episode #123 with Sherry Pratt from Sherry Pratt Health Coaching

Episode #122 with Aaron Strauss from Cache Tactical Supply

Episode #121 with Cedric Delavaud from Ludoland Regina

Episode #120 with Jasmine Patterson from BDC

Episode #119 with Jeff Harmel from Realty Executives Diversified Realty

Episode #118 with Shahzad Khoja from IBITS

Episode #117 with Kathy Sabo from QC Gifts

Episode #116 with Andrea Lo from the Toronto Dating Hub

Episode #115 with Karey Kapell from Next Level Coaching

Episode #114 with Joel Sopp from Socially Acceptable Marketing

Episode #113 with Annabel Townsend from The Penny University

Episode #112 with Cathlyn Melvin about her Tedx Coaching

Episode #111 with Corey Liebrecht from Zippity Zip Courier

Episode #110 with Quinn Nikulak from Kustom Kitties Canada

Episode #109 with Tess Boehm from Totally Tess Tradeshows

Episode #108 with Shane Chapman from the Ultimate Deck Shop

Episode #107 with Dan Celis from Tommy's Speakeatery

Episode #106 with Ann Corcoran

Episode #105 with Louise Yates & Jennifer Berg

Episode #104 with Jule Gilchrist from Cuppa'T Teas

Episode #103 with Annika Mang from TrailCollectiv

Episode #102 with Ronley Arnold from OSI-CAN Sask

Episode #101 with Susan Robertson from Susan Robertson Pottery

Episode #100 with Victor Roman from the South Saskatchewan Community Foundation

Episode #99 with Faith Alyssa Peter from Stressed Out Mamas

Episode #98 with Leah Mazur from Carousel Creative

Episode #97 with Carmen Johanson and Kimberley Baldwin from PayTrail

Episode #96 with Meg Casebolt from Love at First Search

Episode #95 with Karen Kobussen from CanBall Games

Episode #94 with Wilson Acton

Episode #93 with Carla Browne from Real Property Management Canada

Episode #92 with Donna Ziegler from South Sask Community Foundation

Episode #91 with Scott Love from Store to Door Canada

Episode #90 with Mark Heise from Rebellion Brewing

Episode #89 with Brendan McGuire from Affinity Credit Union

Episode #88 with Tyler Clark form Prairie Benefits Solutions

Episode #87 with Craig Reed from Virtus Group

Episode #86 with Daria Malin from Boost Strategic Coaching

Episode #85 with Bill Thorn form Regina Humane Society

Episode #84 with John Vuong from Local SEO Search

Episode #83 with Linda Boryski from Saskatoon PhysioYoga

Episode #82 with Tracey Poffenroth Prato from RAD Talk with Tracey

Episode #81 with Janet Kotylak, YWCA Woman of Distinction

Episode #80 Your Ultimate Guide to Get Found with Local SEO

Episode #79 with Jennifer Fox from Auto Electric Service

Episode #78 with Janet Akre and Susan Robertson from River & Rail ArtVenture

Episode #77 with Karen Smith from Better Business Bureau of Saskatchewan

Episode #76 with Julie Naismith from SubThreshold Training

Episode #75 with Josh Haugerud from Regina Folk Festival

Episode #74 with Barb Stefanyshyn-Cote from Black Fox Farm and Distillery

Episode #73 with Cory Furman from Furman IP

Episode #72 with Tracy Archer from Knight Archer Insurance

Episode #71 with Tim Nickel from Fifth Business Consulting

Episode #70 with Taylor Weisgerber from Spartan Mechanical

Episode #69 with Lisa McIntyre from The Optical Shoppe

Episode #68 with Santa Claus

Episode #67 with Kait Waugh from Fat Plant Farm

Episode #66 with Natasha Vandenhurk from Three Farmers Foods

Episode #65 with Dianne Beauchamp from PuroClean Regina

Episode #64 with Adele Buettner from AgriBiz Communications

Episode #63 with Mary Weimer from Conexus Credit Union

Episode #62 with Winter Fedyk from Silo Strategy

Episode #61 with Heather Day from C.S. Day Transport & YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee

Episode #60 with Amber Goodwyn from Regina Folk Festival & YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee

Episode #59 with Cari Bode from South Country Equipment & YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee

Episode #58 with Donna-Rae Crooks from Brain Snacks Co & YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee

Episode #57 with Michelle Grodecki from  Deaf Crows Collective & YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee

Episode #56 with Sarah Tkachuk from KPMG & YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee

Episode #55 with Dr. Sharon Leibel, YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee

Episode #54 with Doug Yaremko from Paddock Wood Brewery

Episode #53 with Madhu Kumar, YWCA Women of Distinction Nominee

Episode #52 with Eric Oelson from Mortise & Tenon Store

Episode #51 with Kim Korven from The Gentle Way Divorce

Episode #50 with Erin Vaughan from Kinetic Auto Service

Episode #49 with Lisa Brice from Brice Photography

Episode #48 with Colleen Strauch from Luther College at U of R

Episode #47 with Doug Pattison from Pattison Health

Episode #46 with Erika Gayle from Erika Gayle Photography

Episode #45 with Carly Patryluk from House of Paws Pet Boutique

Episode #44 with Erin Caleval from Erin & Associates Insurance

Episode #43 Part #2 with Nikki Jacquin from Nikki's Portraits of Childhood

Episode #43 Part #1 with Jess Tiefenbach from Stay n Play Parenting

Episode #42 with Nadene Joy from Nadene Joy

Episode #41 with Richard Arockiasamy and Sanjana Kumta from GreenMache

Episode #40 with Jodi Barrett, CEO of Kettlebell Kickboxing Canada

Episode #39 with Erin Kinder from Kinder Surprises Antiques

Episode #38 with Tanner Goetz from Munz Media

Episode #37 with Jessica McNaughton from memoryKPR

Episode #36 with Wendy Turner-Larsen from Turner Larsen Consulting

Episode #35 with Jill Poulton from Transformational Leadership

Episode #34 with Janci Templeman from Walker Wakefield

Episode #33 with Denise Anderson, Author, Divorce in a Small Town

Episode #32 with Anne Gibbons from Gibbons Travel Consulting

Episode #31 with Charlene SanJenko from PowHERhouse Media

Episode #30 with Dr. Vianne Timmons from the University of Regina

Episode #29 with Margaret Kisikaw-Piyesis, from All Nations Hope Network & YWCA Woman of Distinction

Episode 28 with Dr. Renatta Varma, Vitreo-Retinal Surgeon & YWCA Woman of Distinction

Episode 27 with Jo-Anne Dusel from PATHS & YWCA Woman of Distinction

Episode 26 with Dr. Emily Bamforth from Royal Saskatchewan Museum & YWCA Woman of Distinction

Episode 25 with Nigora Yulyakshieva from City of Regina & YWCA Woman of Distinction

Episode 24 with Pam Klein from Phoenix Group & Miriam Johnson from Saskatchewan Roughriders

Episode 23 with Gr. 5 & 6 Students from Argyle School

Episode 22 with Tiffany Wolf from Helium Communications

Episode 21 with Jeff Kinash from Peregrine Farm

Episode 20 with Charlene Oancia from Springer & Oake

Episode 19 with Dan Benesh from BarterPay Regina

Episode 18 with Prabha Mitchell from WESK

Episode 17 with Terrie Dunand from REMAX Crown Real Estate

Episode 16 with Kim Zacaruk from Stone’s Throw Coffee Collective

Episode 15 with Luke Rossmo from Luke Rossmo Music and Gareth Bawden from

Episode 14 with Kristen Hill from Kristen’s Cultures

Episode 13 with Cyndie Knorr from Cynergy Coaching

Episode 12 with Paul Burch from EchoLotto Inc.

Episode 11 with Rea Faber from Amaranth Designs

Episode 10 with Brandi Good from BLG Business Solutions

Episode 9 with Dr. Gina Grandy from Hill | Levene Schools of Business

Episode 8 with Candyce Fiessel from The Style Academy and Shear Escape Salon and Spa

Episode 7 with Michelle Strawford from Bella Chic Fashion & Decor and What Women Want

Episode 6 with Jordan McFarlen from  Conexus Business Incubator

Episode 5 with Cheryl Giambattista from Health Coach Cheryl

Episode 4 with Joanne Frederick from Prairie Centre for Mindfulness

Episode 3 with John Hopkins and Amanda Baker, Regina Chamber of Commerce

Episode 2 with Christina Carlson from Queen City Collective

Episode 1 with Sherry Knight from Dimension 11

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In Episode 6, we caught up with Jordan McFarlen from the Conexus Business Incubator! With the clock quickly ticking down on the project, the first cohort will apply next month. The on-site, cohort style learning will accelerate participants growth and help move companies to market more quickly.


Barb McGrath 0:00
Welcome tonight views The Secret Life of entrepreneurs on 91.3 FM CJ tr Regina community radio. We’re live each Wednesday with a local business owner who’s making a difference in Regina. Stay tuned to learn their secrets about what makes them tick. What helped them become successful and their role in our community as a business leader. You’re listening to your host, Barb McGrath, business owner and founder of the get found on Google live program, marketing expert who helps businesses succeed with ease using their website, social media and online reputation. Our guest today is Jordan McFarlane from the Conexus Business Incubator. Jordan is going to talk a little bit today about the Incubator, what’s happening with that project, the status of the project. And he’s also going to talk about an exciting event that we have happening in Regina.

Jordan McFarlane 0:54
So welcome, Jordan, thank you very much for having me. I’m very excited to be here today.

Barb McGrath 0:57
Excellent. Well, thank you. Well, let’s start it off with you. Tell us a little bit about yourself.

Jordan McFarlane 1:02
Yeah, my name is Jordan. I’m here representing the Conexus Business Incubator. So right now working to help promote entrepreneurship, and innovative startups here in the city and across the province. So really exciting thing we’re working on, and very fortunate to be leading it with a great organization and getting closer and closer to launch. So our goal is to create more successful Saskatchewan startups who maybe are doing business globally, but are kind of headquartered here in the wonderful province of Saskatchewan.

Barb McGrath 1:32
Awesome. So startup, you touched on a big thing. When does this actually kick off? Because the Cultivator already exists? Right?

Jordan McFarlane 1:39
Yeah, so we haven’t launched yet. Basically, what we’ve been doing is we’ve we’ve benchmarked we’ve been a bunch of places, members of our team have gone to Australia and looked at incubators and accelerators. And what are these things? And how do they help businesses grow? We’ve went across Canada, we’ve got, you know, local and sort of Global Connections now. And we’re just preparing to launch. So right now we’re just getting our temporary space ready. We’re very excited to be at innovation place here, Regina, in the old gas buddy offices. So the the building has a good startup aura to it. And history.

Barb McGrath 2:11
Yeah. And we’re successful startup.

Jordan McFarlane 2:14
Exactly. Yeah. Yeah, very much. So. So kind of an untold or I think, you know, fairly well told story, but I don’t think as many people are aware of it as, as they should be. But we’ll have that space. And we’ll get ready for our first intake of companies, probably in about the next month here. We’ll have so we’ve had people coming in kind of testing the space to get it up and ready. And we very much are treating the project like a startup. So we want people to be involved. And we’ve kind of opened it to the public a little bit before it’s before it’s live so that people can give input and and help test it out before we really click play on the project.

Barb McGrath 2:49
Okay, so do you have an official go live date? Or is this you know, as a soft launch kind of moving in? Yeah.

Jordan McFarlane 2:57
So basically, after our 24 hour startup event, we’ll open up the application process, and then we’ll be looking to be live, probably for about a mid mid to late October, start date for our first group of companies.

Barb McGrath 3:10
Okay, so we’ll talk about that application process startup like, so what’s actually going to happen for a business that’s interested?

Jordan McFarlane 3:16
For sure. So what will happen is, they’ll be application opportunities. So you will, you will apply to the program, you know, sharing certain metrics, goals, etc, we’ll assess that with our selection committee, comprised of successful entrepreneurs, community members, etc. We’re just kind of finalizing the details on that. And we’ll have more to share in the future. And then basically, once someone is, you know, receives intake, then we really lay out the game plan for that startup. So as to how do we define success? What are the key performance indicators? How are we going to measure this? What are the metrics? And how do we get the support you need when you need it, to really grow this thing with some hyper growth focused? So we see difference between small business and startup being really that growth, aspiration, you know, that willingness to tackle a real big problem, right.

Barb McGrath 4:02
Okay. So as a small business owner, myself, if I was going to apply, is there an application fee? Are there deadlines and process that are in place right now?

Jordan McFarlane 4:12
No application fee? It’ll be free. It’ll be an online application. And we’ll sort of share more of the details once it’s once it’s live. But yeah, that’ll be definitely communicated out.

Barb McGrath 4:22
So and so are people working in groups or pot? Or is each business moving through the process individually?

Jordan McFarlane 4:29
Yeah, so we have a cohort based program, cohort on intake. So quarter just really means like a class. So almost like we have a, you know, the class of 2018 are our first class of companies. And with that Cohort One, we’re really looking for people who are the early adopters who are ready to test this out in real time. So we’re going to Net Promoter Score everything, right? So you’re willing to adopt and get behind this and people who believe that Regina is a real, audacious community, you know, we have entrepreneurs, we have, you know, the ability to Grow successful startups here, right? That’s really what we’re looking for to know, hey, you know, what do you want to be on the early phase of building this out to help us build so that if there’s something that isn’t great, we get the feedback to change it?

Barb McGrath 5:12
Yeah. So you can Kindle make those inflight corrections, right, for sure.

Jordan McFarlane 5:15
We’re keeping a very lean very agile, you know, tweaking things as they go. And that’s really core to the foundation. That’s why we’ve, you know, had people involved in the process of building the space, the layout, the design, all of those things. So we always want live user feedback, as much as possible, so that that cohort of companies would intake together. And then people would sort of grow at their own rate and, and sort of move on at their own time, there’s not a hard stop on the program at the moment, a lot of it is really testing it out to finalize that kick.

Barb McGrath 5:49
So a couple of times, you’ve talked about that program, can you talk about what that program looks like? Is it a combination of support and in classroom education? Or like, what does the program look like?

Jordan McFarlane 6:01
So the program will be we’re finalizing a few details here. But what’s gonna include as mentorship is going to be huge, that’ll be a key foundational component is the mentor matching connection and access to you know, kind of subject matter expertise, experience founders who’ve, you know, scaled companies or done the things that people would aspire to do? We would then do workshopping as well throughout, and then really kind of the project plan for the startup and, and mapping out what the goals are for that individual company and then hold accountability. So if you’ve been kind of side desking, a project and you’ve been thinking about it, this really allows you to intentionally work on growing it and validating that business or taking it to a more new market, as opposed to kind of, you know, shelfing it?

Barb McGrath 6:48
Yeah, when it’s on the side, your desk, it doesn’t get any attention, right? So sure, when you put it in the spotlight, and suddenly it’s, you know, front and center, it can make a huge difference. Yeah, absolutely. Yeah. Um, any expectations on the benefit of a cohort, having, you know, been through school, I had the good fortune to participate in a cohort. And the relationships that I built through that cohort were just huge. They were amazing. So as you guys were building the program, were there any expectations around those relationships and the benefit that they might provide?

Jordan McFarlane 7:19
Definitely, yeah, the community focus of what we’re building is huge. You know, so just having, you know, a group of highly motivated individuals in the same space, always with the entrepreneur at the core of what we do, and really the founder at the core of what we do. bringing them together is huge. So, you know, the sharing that happens, whether it’s from raising angel investment, or you know, hiring High Performance Team members, you know, or doing different things that are crucial to your business, those relationships are key, because that roller coaster of life as a startup and the potential high growth, but the challenges is always nice to go through as a team. So the culture in our spaces a key component and the culture that we build in. And what we really do when we design the space is we try to design programming, but also the physical space for collisions, so that you will run into people and get to meet them, you know, and share those informal conversations as well as as formal and really build that network. And then, you know, as success stories happen through the graduation process, there’s that loop in of alumni and, and tie back, which is sort of happens down the line.

Barb McGrath 8:28
Right? And is there an expectation, and then alumni kind of come back and support the program as well, do you think?

Jordan McFarlane 8:32
Yeah, I think so if we’ve done our job and really built a strong community, I think that that’ll be a byproduct of that, for sure.

Barb McGrath 8:38
Mm hmm. Definitely. You talk about intentionally building for collision, which might mean that in the hallways, nobody’s allowed to use cell phones, because we all walk around with our heads down and try not to talk to each other anymore.

Jordan McFarlane 8:50
It’d be hard to police the cell phone. I’ve got a few things in the works. Yeah, definitely. Yeah.

Barb McGrath 8:55
Okay, so that kind of opened up a new avenue there. So one time a part of a cohort. I’m actually coming to work in your space, then for a period of time as well. Yes.

Jordan McFarlane 9:05
Yeah. Yeah. So our hope is to have founder on site team, we provide the space and that’s sort of part of the magic that happens there. So I think, you know, you see a variety of startups working out of different spaces, whether it’s coffee shops, you know, your grad, your basement, etc, there’s a lot of benefits to being, you know, in close proximity and in that space, and really being that accountability, but also that legitimacy of, you know, share hosting that big sales meeting or taking that, you know, that that zoom conference call, maybe, you know, in a funky looking boardroom was weird stuff on the wall, but at least it kind of, yeah, it adds that. So we’ve we’ve created what we think will be a fun space, dependent on the needs and just really builds that community.

Barb McGrath 9:50
Okay. Wow, that does sound very interesting. What will you do with two competitors apply to the program?

Jordan McFarlane 9:56
Yeah, we’ll want to be cognizant of that. That’s a that’s waters, you’re going to navigate on an individual basis, okay? But we’ll want to be sure that that’s obviously something we’re going through in real time on our process.

Barb McGrath 10:09
And any, I’ll say preference to different sectors or industry agnostic.

Jordan McFarlane 10:14
So we believe that Regina in our province has a lot of advantages in certain areas. But we also want to encourage some of that innovation that maybe isn’t promoted as much as it could be. There’s been some really cool things here from you know, your your gas buddy, your IQ metrics, your vivo, your ven desta, your Sillitoe your skip the dishes. These are all companies that have really, you know, provided hypergrowth great, high paying jobs for our community. We think there’s a lot of opportunity there. There’s a lot of opportunity, you know, in the ag reg tech world, but we’re we’re industry agnostic, and we’ll see what sort of organically develops and if some of our programming then caters down the line to specific things as they arise. But we didn’t want to close the door to me, in that case, okay.

Barb McGrath 11:02
Jordan, we’re gonna come back in just a minute. And I’m going to start to ask Jordan a few more personal questions how he ended up in this role. I know he’s come from teaching so he’s going to talk a bit about that. But just quickly, I want to tell all of our listeners and viewers that starting this Friday, September 21 91.3 FM CJ tr, Regina community radio will once again host or will seek your financial support during the radio THON 2018. Our goal for this year’s radio THON is to raise $15,500 and your financial support is vital to CJ trs future growth and success. This year, every $25 pledge will give you a chance to win valuable gift certificates from CJ tr sponsors. Every $50 hundred dollar or $150 pledge we’ll get you a special gift. For more details. You can check out the website at CJ tr ta slash donate, show your support for people powered radio during radio THON 2018. starting Friday, September 21st. And that’s only two days away, folks, we’re two thirds of the way through September as of this Friday. I don’t know about you, but I still feel like it should be summer. Time has flown and I tell you time has absolutely flown. All right. Well, let’s come back to Jordan now. He’s going to talk for a few minutes. And I like I want to know a little bit about Jordan, how did you get where you are? For sure.

Jordan McFarlane 12:27
Yeah. So I have a pretty non traditional background to the role. And I think if you look at maybe incubator accelerator roles, there’s not always a traditional path. But yeah, I think my story is a bit unique. I came from education. So what we we set out to do here in Regina was running a High School Business Program at Campbell collegiate and our goal was really to create Canada’s top High School Business program. So we had a pretty lofty goal, a public school in Regina, Saskatchewan. But I think we achieved some very cool things and had alumni to go on to do some awesome stuff. So early on, we realized that there needed to be a strong, you know, connection to the business community to the innovation community. You know, we would take our students to case competitions in Ontario and compete against private schools from Toronto, like your Upper Canada colleges. And you know, we’d often get the look like what is this public school from little old regenesis sketch one, doing that the, you know, Western University, Ivy School Business Case comp with the private schools and the uniforms. And our students would be like neck and neck and we’d perform and kind of punch above our weight class there. And then, you know, we were always looking to make sure we were on the cutting edge of entrepreneurship. And it was about three years ago, I think I was down in San Francisco at a wedding. And I just reached out to some people to make some contacts and Jordan bush from seven shifts, a restaurant scheduling software company based in Saskatoon now an awesome, awesome success story. But starting Regina had been down there to an accelerator program called boost VC with with Adam Draper and kind of from the Tim Draper family. And so he made an introduction. And he actually I think he lied and said I was like a professor.

Barb McGrath 14:14
So I got to have a bit of that Professor look, you know, the dark glasses, the mustache. That’s a good thing or bad. Hey, I taught to so good. Thank you.

Jordan McFarlane 14:23
So you made an introduction. And I got like a specific 15 minute coffee. So I rolled into the super innovative space and I’d never been to an accelerator before. And they happen to have they had like a start stop cohort model. And there was no companies at the time because was in break. And so I ended up having like a three hour discussion with Adam Draper on like, you know, startups, entrepreneurship, what would you do if you could, like, you know, you know, create a class for, you know, high school students to learn about this. So it totally changed the way we did a lot of things and then a lot of our alumni would go on to get involved in a new sort of the entrepreneurship or tech startup system at different schools. So we had a former student of mine, Julia Payne, who’s now working out of Toronto. I met with her at a recent conference started Fest in Montreal. So it’s kind of cool. We’d come from this classroom in Regina, like three years ago. And now we’re both at this, you know, sort of innovative space. So, yeah, it’s been awesome to come through that. And then through that work got heavily involved in the community, we were able to build quite a strong network for our students and our community of learners. And that was sort of nationwide and then really got behind the fact that we felt sometimes Regina got a bad rap for startups entrepreneurship. So any students who are really interested in focusing on that felt maybe the need to leave sometimes. So they were going to go to the city of Waterloo or university, Toronto, UBC. But we felt there’s amazing things happening right here in our province. And then I was fortunate to serve on the council for entrepreneurial growth here in Regina. And and kind of that group sparked the audacity movement, which has really blown up and

Barb McGrath 15:59
Oh, hasn’t it that is huge now.

Jordan McFarlane 16:01
Yeah, it’s great. Great to see what’s happened there. And one thing led to another and fortunate to be in the role that I I’m in today.

Barb McGrath 16:08
Excellent. Okay, that sounds very good. I don’t know if you knew this. I don’t know if you knew this, but I’m actually a Waterloo grad. Oh, awesome. So many, many moons ago, you have to picture this. So here’s a 18 year old Barb, and she goes from mom and dad. And she says, I’m an only child. And so I’m breaking this gently to my parents. And hey, guess what? I want to go across the country to go to school. Yeah. And you know, they kind of look at me in Okay, well, why and like, I had actually done my homework. Yeah. So here’s the extent of homework and breaking this to my mother. I’m an only child. And you know, at the time, nobody went to Ontario and came back, right if you went to state,

Jordan McFarlane 16:45
Yeah. But mom,

Barb McGrath 16:45
The ratio of boys, two girls is six to one, I have to go. I’m sure to this day. My mom still remembers that moment. And I thought it was brilliant. I thought it was the best piece of persuasive language I could come up with. Hey, I went they didn’t pay by the way I had to so good for you. That’s awesome.

Yeah, it was Waterloo is an awesome school. So yeah. Anyway, that’s a complete aside.

Jordan McFarlane 17:11
Yeah, I like, like the thought process.

Barb McGrath 17:15
So did I at 18? Yeah. Good. Okay, so incubators gonna kick off sometime in these next couple of months. Let’s talk long term for a second Regina is not the first to have an incubator or an accelerator. And in fact, I think there’s a couple other organizations in town that are using very similar language, right, when they they talk about their co working spaces. And, and I mean, the more collaboration we have, the better so for sure, right? Although all the better. But let’s think long term, what does this look like long term for Regina or forces? catch one?

Jordan McFarlane 17:49
Yeah, for sure. I think it’s you’re seeing the ecosystem and grow. And you need a variety of things, you know, from access to capital, access to talent from post secondary institutions to, you know, people moving here, etc. So it’s kind of that whole ecosystem. And then yeah, you need your your things like co working spaces where people can, can go and purchase a desk and be a part of that, as well. So I think it’s, it’s important to have that, which all fits into the ecosystem as a whole. And I think realizing, if you want to do something big, you know, it needs to be community connected, and it still needs to be connected outside of our city, in our province, etc. So that’s been pretty foundational to how we’ve built, it’s making sure that it’s it’s super community connected and community LED, but then also connected outside, so to some of the global networks of accelerators and incubators, but also the national. And so I think when you look down the line, we really want to create a robust kind of, you know, space that is truly growing startups, tracking metrics, and seeing that high growth and getting those wins for our community and creating, you know, those jobs, those opportunities here, and I think also just people seeing it as a destination for where they can come and maybe thinking, you know, what it? Is their, you know, cost of living? Or is there you know, is the market a bit oversaturated in the Toronto’s or Vancouver’s in like maybe, you know, maybe Regina, Saskatchewan is the place where I’m going to launch the next big thing, or I’m going to really take my business to the next level and to the next level, for sure. And I think we’ve got a lot of advantages in terms of the people the community support, just had a chat with an individual today. And it’s just I think the the network hear of being able to tie into key decision makers, you know, and get people at the table is key as a key benefit and a real strength for our region. So it’s something I think we need to really get behind.

Barb McGrath 19:42
One of the things that I would have to say that we’ve got going for us is, doesn’t matter who you are, you can reach out and you can talk to just about anyone. Yeah. So whether it’s me reaching out to you, whether it’s somebody trying to reach out to your CEO, everybody is is kind of accessible, even community Are sighs and if you get into a community even the size of Calgary, Toronto, it’s that much more difficult to to kind of get to the decision makers in a lot of cases just because of the number of people.

Jordan McFarlane 20:10
Yeah, most definitely, most definitely. Yeah, I guess I should add over time, too. So we’ve, we’re building out a venture capital fund as well. Okay. And so that individual, that announcement will happen for that position right away. So not only we recognize the need to provide the support and programming for for startups, and eventually scale up companies, but also the access to capital. So you’ll kind of see that whole circle come together where, you know, you’re not requiring or relying solely on investment from outside, but we can see that happening right here in our province.

Barb McGrath 20:42
Okay. Very cool. You have an exciting event coming up the 24 hour startup? Yes. Tell us about that. Who can attend? How do you attend?

Jordan McFarlane 20:49
Yeah, we’re kind of we’re targeting the hipsters, hackers and hustlers for lack of a better word. So we want to bring together anybody who’s maybe got an interest in entrepreneurship wants to test out startup life, but maybe isn’t willing to quit their full time job yet or isn’t sure if it’s ready for them. Or somebody who’s fully engaged in the entrepreneur community or the tech community. So we’re really trying to bring together sort of the tech community, with developers, makers, etc, the business community with your entrepreneurs, or finance or sales, or whatever it is, and then your designers who can really kind of, you know, you’ve got the person who can build it, sell it strategize business model it as well as make it look good. So individuals register, you come together on the Friday nights, and we do a bunch of intro and exercises, you form teams around the ideas that are pitched, and you work on something for the Friday nights, and then come back in Saturday morning, and you work for the full day to try to create a minimum viable product, and you do a three minute pitch at the very end or someone from your team does to a panel of judges give you opportunity to win up to 1500 dollars. Wow. Which is great. And yeah, expert mentors. You know, so if you’re interested in get involved in the startup community, and maybe you know, you don’t have the idea, but you have the, you know, the ability to kind of code and develop, that’s great if you have the idea, but don’t have access to the other things. It’s a great melting pot for that. We’ve got one of our judges coming in from an incubator in Manitoba called North Forge. So we’re really excited to welcome some people to Saskatchewan for the event. Hey, and we’ve got some special pricing for post secondary students, but are seeing anywhere from, you know, software developers that technology technologies to university students in a variety of programs. So it’s a it’s a cool cross section of participants.

Barb McGrath 22:30
Yeah, it’s going to be a very cool event. Believe it or not, Jordan, we only have three minutes left. So I have a couple of speed questions here. Are you ready? Yep. Okay, sports or Culture, Sports or culture?

Jordan McFarlane 22:41
Oh, I’m a sports guy. But what’s the word love culture? I’m a basketball guy.

Barb McGrath 22:45
You’re a basketball guy. So conversation with anyone dead or alive? Who would it be

Jordan McFarlane 22:50
Conversation with anyone Dead or Alive or playing off the basketball? I’d love to love to have a conversation with Larry Bird that was kind of an idol. Growing up, yeah. Case, professional or business said,

Barb McGrath 23:01
If money wasn’t an object, what business would you start?

Jordan McFarlane 23:05
If money wasn’t an object? What business? Would I start now that I’m fully engaged in kind of the innovation ecosystem here? I would I get involved in some sort of tech startup, but not sure what that is. Maybe I’ll find out at 24 hour startup.

Barb McGrath 23:20
There you go. You just might. Alright, well, we are at a time here for today. And I’d like to thank you the listeners for joining us here today on 91.3 FM CJ tr, or jhana community radio for night views and The Secret Life of entrepreneurs. Thank you, Jordan, for joining us from the Conexus Business Cultivator and talking about the 24 hour startup event that’s on September 28. I don’t think Jordan actually said the date. And if you’d like to register, either go to Conexus website and then I think it’s on Facebook as well. Startup like you on Facebook. Yeah.

Okay, place to get the info.

Perfect. That sounds good. All right. I will be back on October 3 with Michelle Strafford. From the what women want events in Bella check decor. She’s going to talk a little bit about the take off of these events over the last few years. And they’ve kind of taken on a life of their own. So I think she’ll talk a little bit about that. If you’re interested in being a guest on the show, you can email me directly at or reach out directly on Facebook or Instagram. Also at Above the Fold Canada. Just a reminder, you can submit your questions in advance of the live show on our Facebook page. And I’m Barb McGrath, your host local business owner, and as a friend of mine said to me the other day and Google evangelist, so Joanna had to throw that in for you. Thanks for the opportunity to be here. Today, folks. Sherry, we’ll be back with you next Wednesday at 12 o’clock. Remember, you worked hard for your success. Don’t keep it a secret.


Barb McGrath’s been cracking the online code for nearly 20 years. She helps local businesses get to the top of Google with digital marketing training, web design, SEO, online reputation and advertising. Most importantly, she’s earned the trust of Google.Barb runs the only Google-approved agency designed to show you how to turn the online “stuff” into in-store buyers.If you depend on in-person customers, you need Barb’s step-by-step, online marketing plan to generate a steady stream of onsite buyers and make it rain money. She is the host of the Secret Life of Entrepreneurs, a local radio show and iTunes and Google Podcast.