Edmonton Experiment Visits Toronto
I started my first week with the Edmonton Experiment by flying out to Toronto alongside Karen Unland. The Edmonton Experiment team then spent a week working out of the National Post building with the Toronto team (which they’re now calling the National Post Labs). Our two experimental pairs shared ideas, brainstormed, and generally fired on all cylinders. We also occasionally saw a bit of Toronto, which was lovely, since it was my first time visiting.
Duncan, Chris, Karen, and Noah all crowd around Karen’s computer as she shows them something. Also pictured: an amazing stock photo of our team.
A little bit of Toronto.
The hall of newspapers had a digital display of the daily papers inside that newspapers paper box. It was interactive and very cool.
The National Post building was amazing, the newsroom is huge and everyone we met was helpful and friendly (so very unlike Toronto stereotypes). We spent most of our time in the boardroom, working on both projects. In Edmonton, we’ll be focusing on entrepreneurial culture, while our Toronto counterparts are looking into food culture. (As an aside, always tour a city with people focused on food – your taste buds will definitely thank you!)
As for the project, there is a lot of work ahead of us. We have lots of meetings in the upcoming weeks, trying to connect with creative entrepreneurs of all stripes. We want to find out everything we can about them – what makes them tick, what challenges them, and how we can help. I’ll be honest with you, this past week has already been really tough. Flying into Toronto, I thought I knew what the vision for the Edmonton Experiment would be. However, as it is a constantly evolving beast, we’re now heading in a different direction. We pivoted, and it might take me a while to get into the new headspace.
The analogy I am using is this: my mind is a living room. For years now, I’ve enjoyed the wallpaper that adorned the walls, but now, I need to paint them. In order to do that, it’s going to take time as I peel off all the wallpaper before getting the paint up. It will take us a bit of time to get the Experiment going. After all, that wallpaper has been stuck on since I moved in, and it’s going to need a lot of work. (And no, I don’t know what colour I’m painting it.) I think Karen has already got most of the paper off the walls, and lucky for me she offered to help me with mine.
So the update is simply: We’re back from Toronto with new ideas and ready to take Edmonton on. We are moving into our offices on the first floor of the Edmonton Journal building, slowly but surely. Right now, I have one shelf set up, a coat rack, and I just brought in a cup to hold my pens this morning. We’ll continue on, I have a two full pages of tasks ahead of me to accomplish this week, and with this post done, I can check another one of them off.
You could help me with another task by sending me lists of names of entrepreneurs with expertise to share or things you want to know about business in Edmonton. [(britlradio)@gmail.com without the brackets.]
Fond of Venn Diagrams, Karen and I discussed our ideas, and realized that there are so many people in our city we don’t know yet – so your help will be definitely appreciated.
Failing that, I still need post-its.