What innovation really means for traditional small business in Waterlo | Digital Innovation Skills Certificate
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What innovation really means for traditional small business in Waterloo Region

Mar 23, 2017 Posted by: Mistie Brown

One of the most important things the DISC Program is doing for participating SMEs includes identifying and exploring opportunities for innovation outside of existing operations.

Only 13% of Canadian firms are actually aware of changing technologies and promoting cultures of innovation.

After speaking with over 160 local small business owners in Waterloo Region through community consultations, we know that many entrepreneurs often focus their energy solely on the everyday operations of their business in order to keep the doors open. 

Waterloo Region Small Business Centre public consultations results in DISC Program(Entrepreneur capturing his thoughts on post-it notes at
2015 WRSBC Small Business Matters Consultation)

The DISC Program gives the local small business community an opportunity to leverage a team of students to parachute into their business and identify opportunities to adopt emerging technology to improve the performance and productivity.

These innovations range from finding different ways to package services or products, to setting up an online store to reach customers outside of geographic restrictions.

In yesterday’s class, innovation expert and DISC Program Lead, Dave Inglis, shared Deloitte Canada’s strategy titled The Marvel of Innovation: 7 Essential Superheros for innovation. This strategy outlines the Super Seven team members that help to cut through complacency and find new ways in which a company can truly innovate in order to grow their business. These roles include:

DISC Program offers innovation for Waterloo Region Small Business

The seven roles are reflected in the student teams (along with their expert coach) and are filling in the gaps for 5 local businesses that currently do not have the capacity to assemble a “team of innovators”.

DISC Students are not only developing skills in e-commerce and digital marketing, but are also developing a more rare ability to apply design thinking to help small business owners identify opportunities to innovate.

The first cohort of 30 students are graduating this spring and are looking for opportunities to flex their skills. To find out how you can hire one of these talented young professionals, contact ww.evergreensolutions.com for a free one-on-one consultation