Updated: Jun 19, 2019
Our fourth and final workshop day began with each group sharing their progress and project as it had developed in the weeks between the sessions. Every group had done an excellent job reaching out, coming together to ideate, and building their project proposals. The groups got 5 minutes to present their project and the participants once again provided helpful feedback for improving the projects. The groups’ now had the opportunity to incorporate this feedback and put those finishing touches on their presentation in anticipation for the mentorship session coming up in the afternoon.
In order for our projects to succeed we needed to make sure that each group had an idea of who would want to lead (or co-lead) the project and who would be willing to support the development over the course of time it would take to run it. We talked with groups about expectations and team dynamics and then allowed them to define roles and responsibilities within their groups. The goal was to create as clear of an idea as possible of how success would be achieved based on each person’s abilities and capacities. This also lent direction to each group member and strength to the projects as certain roles could now be assigned.
After lunch, we had the great pleasure of hosting mentors from entrepreneurial and social innovation hubs such as Startup Calgary, the ATB Entrepreneurship Hub, the University of Calgary’s Hunter Hub for Entrepreneurial Development and Suncor. These mentors spent 20-minute intervals with our groups providing feedback based on their expertise in the field. This provided invaluable input to our teams from people who had been through the trials and tribulations of turning an idea into action. After this session our groups were primed with more information on how to better their projects and present a more complete idea.
Now that our groups had heard from their peers and presented to mentors, they had some time to hash out some more details on their projects and figure out how to best prepare for the public launch in three weeks. It seemed like a long time from when 30 strangers came together on that first snowy March day as each group worked busily away on their idea.
In only three short weeks we would meet again at the City Building Design Lab one last time for the main event. The Urban Action Pitch-Off would feature each team pitching their project to the community and a panel of judges for the opportunity to win $5,000 of seed funding to get their project going. Our participants closed off the day energized, excited, and full of optimism for the upcoming event.