Being an entrepreneur takes a lot of guts at the best of times. In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, entrepreneurship is more nerve-wracking than ever as small business owners navigate the uncharted territory of a rapidly changing New Brunswick economy.
With financial uncertainty around every corner, entrepreneurs may feel like they’re alone in the wildnerness. But there’s a new resource to help them find their way. The OASIS Show, a project of NBCC Entrepreneurship, brings the experienced voices of community partners and resources to their computer screens.
“The whole crux of NBCC Entrepreneurship is finding ways to engage students, alumni, and communities in entrepreneurship,” said Clarissa Harris-LeBreton, Coordinator and host of The OASIS Show. “The show is just another arm of being able to do that, showcasing how the businesses we feature pivoted, to help others learn how to pivot.”
Since March 26, Harris-LeBreton has been hosting web episodes of The OASIS Show, interviewing New Brunswick entrepreneurs, service providers, and community resource experts. The goal is to give struggling entrepreneurs advice and support in these uncertain times by sharing the success stories of those who have rounded the corner into more secure territory, as well as the resources that NBCC provides.
“A lot of these businesses could have dried up,” said Harris-LeBreton. “I’ve learned a lot about how businesses had to adjust. With this little show that I’ve done out of the basement of my house, with bad lighting and no equipment, we can really show people that we have people in six locations throughout the province that can support small businesses.”
In the first two months of operation, The OASIS Show garnered more than 5,000 views. Harris-LeBreton is branching out with the program this summer with a series featuring small businesses that depend upon tourism. Anyone with suggestions for the summer series can send them to Clarissa.HarrisLebreton@nbcc.ca.
The OASIS program is the flagship initiative of NBCC’s Entrepreneurship department, a key component of the NBCC Advantage. It’s designed to offer entrepreneurs a professional oasis where they can seek guidance, build relationships, and gain knowledge from successful business people. This professional oasis provides support from community and business leaders to entrepreneurs in their journey.