Entrepreneurship webinar lays platform for young business owners

Participant, Tamorla Millette
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More than three dozen entrepreneurs and aspiring business owners are one step closer to unleashing their full commercial potential after participating in the Junior Chamber International (JCI) Antigua ‘Rise to Lead’ webinar held last week via the Zoom platform.

Participants were engaged in five 40-minute sessions that focused on business planning, finance essentials, intellectual property, creative leadership and cost, customer and competition. The presenters were JCI Senators Dorothy Peters Nicholls and Elton Isaacs, JCI Past President Dr Nneka Hull-James, Ricki Camacho, and South African guest speaker, Unotida Nyoni.

Minister of Trade EP Chet Greene joined the webinar during Friday evening’s session and encouraged participants to use opportunities such as this to build their knowledge in business management. He also urged them to take advantage of programmes put in place by government to assist small business owners, such as the Prime Minister’s Entrepreneurial Development Programme (EDP).

Minister of Trade, EP Chet Greene

“It was important to have the entrepreneur webinar because of the number of small businesses that would have come about during the pandemic in 2020 and even now,” JCI Antigua Business Seminars Chair, Ayana Dorsette, said.

She explained that the structure and webinar topics were geared towards configuring the participants’ mindset to think of their business ventures as viable assets, not only for now but for as long as they are able to continue beyond the pandemic.

The JCI Antigua Business Seminars was supported by the JCI Antigua Rise, which saw all three committees collaborating to execute the event.

“Pulling off the virtual webinar event required a significant amount of planning including presentation topics, guest speakers and target audience to ensure the most impactful experience to participants of the session,” remarked JCI Antigua Rise Co-Chair Olson Browne.

JCI Liaison Officer, Leon Norville noted, “if we look around, we will notice younger and younger people taking that step towards entrepreneurship. We, as an organization, thought it best to give those people a head start in their business journey”.

Meanwhile, the participants of the two-day event expressed their satisfaction and said they were motivated by the experience.

According to the owner of Party Perfect Tamorla Millette, the sessions were “very interactive and informative”, and Naomi Joseph of Shebah’s Hot Sauce also gave the event two-thumbs up saying, “it was an eye-opening experience”.

This webinar marks the organisation’s first event of the year to be executed jointly by more than one committee. Vice-President Laurel Jonas hinted there could be many more events like this in the pipeline as the organisation focuses on creating sustainable, impactful programming in this challenging Covid-19 era.

JCI Antigua’s 2021 President, Leycia Samuels, highly commended the committees involved for a job well done, adding “we consider this webinar a success as we met our goals, and our impact was felt. As Benjamin Franklin said, ‘an investment in knowledge pays the best interest’. We hope to see the knowledge gained implemented, resulting in sustainable businesses in Antigua and Barbuda”.

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