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Small Business Summit 2020

October 22, 2020 @ 9:00 am - 1:00 pm

Ticket Options:

No charge to Ottawa Board of Trade Members / Future Members

“Support Local” Ticket:
Ottawa Board of Trade Member / Future Member – $30+ HST
Select a lunch from Freshii or Pita Pit and it will be delivered on Oct 22 during the Small Business Summit

Cancellations must be submitted in writing to info@ottawabusinessevents.ca 5 business days prior to the event start time to guarantee a refund. Ottawa Business Events reserves the right to deny refund requests submitted less than 5 business days prior to the event start time.

Ottawa Business Events reserves the right to close event registration 5 business days prior to the event start time, or when the maximum capacity for the event is reached.



SMALL BUSINESS SUMMIT: The Real Lives of Entrepreneurs

Small businesses are being challenged like never before. The onset of COVID-19 and the ensuing health measures that shut down much of the economy are pushing many entrepreneurs and managers to the brink.

The Small Business Summit is intended as a lifeline to entrepreneurs who are struggling and a boost to companies who are looking to emerge from the pandemic stronger than ever.

This half-day virtual conference is free to local entrepreneurs and their business managers. (There is also a VIP option that includes a lunch delivered to your work or home.)

The summit will deal with real-life issues of entrepreneurs, including team resiliency, the shifting economic climate, digital transformation and mental health.

Do not miss our video chat session on what it means to be a business owner.


09:00 // Welcome remarks

09:10 // Session 1: Unf*ck Your Books with Spencer Sheinin; Sponsored by TEC Canada

As a business owner, you probably don’t love the numbers aspect of your business. You likely started the business without a financial background and kinda ignored accounting early on, passing everything off to your bookkeeper. Why wouldn’t you? Accounting sucks. It worked for a while but now you’ve grown and you’re losing sleep over the numbers you need to manage. When financial literacy is ignored, a plateau is inevitable. This session is for those business owners who want to break from the vicious cycle of financial literacy cloudiness. Don’t worry, it’s not an accounting lesson! We’ll strip it back to the bare bones of business owners’ financial needs: walk away knowing how to evolve from financial frustration to totally dialed Insights Driven Accounting, setting the stage for the next round of growth.

10:00 // Session 2: Forging the Way Forward: How Entrepreneurs Are Adapting to the Pandemic; Sponsored by BDC

In this unprecedented context, Canadian entrepreneurs have once again shown their courage and ability to adapt. This year for Small Business Week, BDC is taking the time to recognize their resilience, trying to understand what has changed for Canadian businesses and look to build for the future in these uncertain times. Join Pierre Cléroux, Vice President, Research and Chief Economist of BDC, for an overview of the economic situation and the outlook for the future. He will also present the results of a survey of 1,000 entrepreneurs and 2,000 consumers in Canada to better understand how this crisis is changing the habits of Canadians and what the country’s entrepreneurs are doing to adapt and position themselves in this new context. Discover the five priorities of entrepreneurs in responding to COVID-19 as well as practical advice to successfully navigate this new business context.

11:00 // Session 3: Can We Talk? The Real Lives of Entrepreneurs

Serial entrepreneur and local media personality Mark Sutcliffe leads a “let’s get real” discussion about the highs and lows of entrepreneurship. Keep your cameras on and join in the discussion. Mark will be joined by Karla Briones and Lee Underwood.

11:30 // Session 4: Surviving and Thriving Through Digital Transformation with Vicki Iverson and Matt Strentse

The COVID-19 pandemic has pressed fast forward on the need for small businesses to establish better digital platforms and processes. In this session, two of Ottawa’s leading experts share actionable advice on how to jump start your company’s digital transformation. Join us to discuss digital strategy and execution. This session includes interactive polls and Q&A to get your questions answered.

12:30 // Session 5: Maintaining Mental Health During a Pandemic with Emily Deacon

Owning and operating a business typically brings a tremendous amount of stress. Managing a bottom line, leading employees and dealing with client demands. It’s extremely challenging in the best circumstances, let alone a pandemic. The health and economic crisis is pushing entrepreneurs to the brink. Join Emily Deacon from the Royal Ottawa to learn about some simple techniques to maintain your mental health during these challenging times.



Registration is a two-step process. Register on the Ottawa Board of Trade website. After you register, you will receive an email that allows you to register for individual sessions.

If you opt for the VIP “Support Local” registration that includes a lunch, a form will be sent to you to select your meal option and provide delivery instructions.

Come celebrate Small Business Week. Get informed, get inspired and grow your small business.



Ottawa Board of Trade