The Canada Startup Visa business incubator syllabus can be described as being a high-end program for entrepreneurs taught by talented business people with substantial international business experience. 

Phase One: Strategic Growth Planning

Once you have been approved by Citizenship and Immigration Canada for permanent residency through the startup visa program you participate in a series of Business Incubator workshops to identify a set of activities to help launch your business in Canada and grow revenue year after year. This first includes:

  1. Assessing the startup’s current situation,
  2. Identify the startup’s current growth pattern,
  3. Identify a better growth pattern,
  4. Identify specific growth goals,
  5. Define the startup’s current position relative to each growth goal,
  6. For each goal, define the activities required to achieve it, and
  7. Integrate activities into one growth plan. This plan tracks milestones and the effectiveness of resource allocations.

Phase Two: Tracking Execution

Resource allocation is attached to each activity (who, how much money and by when). For each startup, a precedence diagram and Gantt Chart using project management software is created so that the process is easily understood by all.

Progress is typically tracked on the first day of each month. The Gantt Chart informs visually how the activities relate to each other, how far each activity has progressed and what resources (time, money, people) are being used for each activity.

Phase 3: Mentoring Resources

Concurrent with Phase Two, mentor meeting occur a minimum of every 10 business days or more frequently, based on need. Mentors also deliver relevant curriculum weekly.

Mentoring is detailed and involved to ensure that your startup succeeds and is organized by phases of the incubation process.

The first phase is strategic growth planning. In this phase, the focus is on growth potential, markets, sales, design, marketing and business planning. You then go through a Canadian business education model. Finally, operational capability workshops are taught to so as to identify where processes could be improved and further developed.

Operational Curriculum

Your syllabus will be similar to the following:

Phase 1: Strategy and Planning

  • Validate your business model, profile your customers and activate your plan,
  • Business psychology and the benefits of good team work,
  • Learn how to develop a business culture that continuously fosters innovation,
  • Align your product with a vision within a product and market context,
  • Experiment to gain new insights and fresh perspectives,
  • Help define and shape the value you offer your customers,
  • The Art of the Pitch.

Phase 2: Business Operations, Hiring and Accounting

  • Canadian accounting requirements,
  • Banking,
  • Budgeting,
  • Filing T4 Tax,
  • Recruiting,
  • Payroll,
  • Terminating contracts,
  • Hiring contractors,
  • Labour laws and hiring employees,
  • Understanding the financial health of your business.

Phase 3: Business Development, Deals, Funnel, Selling.

  • Getting set up with the best sales tools,
  • Defining your sales process,
  • Defining your ideal customer profile,
  • How to prospect using email,
  • How to structure your meeting or call,
  • Interpreting customer-speak,
  • What to do next.

Phase 4: Financing

  • Financing plan,
  • IRAP – how does it work?
  • Other Govt. Programs

Phase 5: Legal 101

  • Valuing Founders’ Shares,
  • Board of Directors and Advisor Agreements,
  • Corporate Governance,
  • Licensing deals,
  • International sales contracts.