“The Pitch” – Excellent Presentation Advice From MaRS

MaRS provides a wealth of business information, tools, and advice for entrepreneurs.

This is the video of the May 5th, 2011 Entrepreneurship 101 session on preparing and delivering “The Pitch” to investors, especially VCs.

Peter Evans, a MaRS advisor, provides a template, examples, and practical advice for “The Pitch” which has much relevance for presentations to potential customers as well as other prospects.

The MaRS link to this presentation is: http://www.marsdd.com/events/details.html?uuid=69f1c16a-728b-4245-8733-7cb79f243efb

The entire schedule of sessions and related links can be found earlier on my blog at: http://ajmg.ca/?p=86



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Spring Has Sprung And The Sap Is Running … ;~)

The snow and ice, which can be pretty daunting (as the pic below shows) have been gone from the Humber Trail for about a month now (since early March) and I’m back to running my favourite sections and routes.

Piles of ice on the bank of the Humber River

The Humber Trail, except for a couple of breaks, extends as a paved path continuously from the Humber Arboretum in the north-west corner of the city down to Lake Ontario where it joins the Waterfront Trail.

I really and truly hate the treadmill, but the trail is not cleared during winter, so I run on local side streets whenever the sidewalks and roads are clear of snow, ice, and slush – and when the wind isn’t too bad.

Though it gets busier in some spots than in others, it’s never really crowded – walkers, runners, cyclists, nature lovers, photographers, picnickers, children, seniors – all share the path with little enmity (a lesson from which our parliamentarians would greatly benefit).

I run for a bunch of reasons: health, aerobic fitness, stress relief, a private time to think, to enjoy the natural beauty of the trail, and more …

On the whole, running is pretty simple and inexpensive. Here are a couple things that I have found useful:

  • Measurement: I like to be aware of how far, fast, and intensely I run or cycle, I love my Garmin;
  • Learning: I like to learn about running and there is much available on the Internet. I have found “Running For Fitness” to be a simple, clear, and very useful resource – be sure to check out the “calculations” tab;
  • Results: Like most, I have my PBs for 5K, 10K, half marathon, and so on – but a result that gives me considerable satisfaction is my RHR which was 48 today.

Hope to see you on the trail, in the meantime …

Gotta run!!!


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Blue Ocean Strategy: How to Create Uncontested Market Space and Make the Competition Irrelevant

In their book “Blue Ocean Strategy”, authors W. Chan Kim and Renée Mauborgne claim to show you “How to create uncontested market space and make the competition irrelevant” – this is a bold claim.

Life-cycle Process

Like a cook testing recipes in a new cookbook, I applied a number of the models and templates to my business and found them to be interesting, illuminating, and useful.

Among them, along with great examples and related insights:

  • Strategy Canvas
  • Four Actions Framework
  • Eliminate-Reduce-Raise-Create Grid
  • Buyer Utility Map
  • click this link for more

In short, “Blue Ocean Strategy” is well worth reading.  The book is easy to read; the models are logical, coherent, and well integrated; and the insights are interesting, valuable, and highly actionable.

For more information, here is the website: http://www.blueoceanstrategy.com/



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Herding Cats (Classic PM Metaphor)

I was looking for some material for a presentation and came across the classic project metaphor of “herding cats”.

Here is a beauty by EDS …



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Retooling A Plane In Flight (Classic PM Metaphor)

Is there anyone in IT has not not heard/used the “retooling of a plane in flight” to describe project complexity.

Here’s another EDS beauty …



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Resistance To Change

I found this little gem sometime ago, and rediscovered it recently while looking for something else.

It stuck me as a great example of “the more things change, the more they stay the same …



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MaRS Development District


MaRS is where science, technology and social entrepreneurs get the help they need. Where all kinds of people meet to spark new ideas. And where a global reputation for innovation is being earned, one success story at a time.”

Entrepreneurship 101

It’s an excellent opportunity to participate in this community of innovators to explore, to learn, and to meet interesting people.

I’ve signed up for “Entrepreneurship 101″, each Wednesday, 5:30 PM to 6:30 PM, in the MaRS Centre (Auditorium), 101 College Street, Toronto.

Each week, I will post a link to that week’s meeting summary and materials. In the meantime, here is where you can go to learn more about MaRS:

Upcoming Events (that I’m planning to attend):

Past Events (that I’ve attended):
(typically with video, presentation, and other links and materials)

    Come 2012, Ontario will enforce its new Customer Service Standards for people with disabilities. Legal obligations aside, companies that view accessibility as an obstacle rather than an opportunity miss tapping into a market segment that wields $25 billion. Hear from consultants and product developers on how you can turn accessibility into profitability.

  • Kamal Hassan, CEO, Skymeter;
  • Daniel Moneta, CEO and Co-Founder, MMB Research Inc.;
  • Nicolas Morgan, Director and VP Business Development, Morgan Solar Inc.
  • See you there!


    Posted in Business Analysis, Business Strategy, Change, Evergreen, Personal Growth | 1 Comment

    Another In the Category Of: “What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger”

    Yesterday (Tuesday, October 19), I attended the “Small Business Forum 2010″ at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (organized by: Enterprise Toronto).

    Austin Hill, serial Canadian entrepreneur, gave a very interesting and inspiring presentation sharing his story, learnings, and sincere advice.  He also played this video illustrating the roller-coaster nature of entrepreneurship – it gives another take on “What Doesn’t Kill You Makes You Stronger” point of view.

    Let me know what you think.



    Posted in Humour, Personal Growth | Leave a comment

    Demotivators (in case life hasn’t thrown enough curves your way)


    “A company that will go to the ends of the Earth for its people will find it can hire them for about 10% of the cost of Americans (Canadians?)”

    More like this …

    Thank you Glen for sharing these links.

    Credit: Thank you Bill Detwiler.



    Posted in Humour | Leave a comment

    “I’m No Good With Names … But I never Forget A Face”

    At last night’s PMI-SOC Monthly Meeting, the guest speaker was Bob Gray, a very engaging, entertaining, and effective speaker.

    Bob Gray

    With humour, compelling examples and audience participation exercises – and there had to be close to 200 people there – Bob was able to demonstrate the power of association as an aid to memory.

    He showed us how to improve – massively – our ability to memorize and accurately recall: 1) the names of the first 10 US presidents, and 2) 8 subjects that the audience had never seen before.

    Give his website (www.memoryedge.com) a look for more info about Bob and his unique and valuable skill.

    Your comments are welcome.



    Posted in Evergreen, Personal Growth | Leave a comment