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Intro to VentureLabs
A quick overview of who we are and how we help businesses grow

Scientific Research and Experimental Development
SR&ED uses tax incentives to encourage Canadian businesses in all sectors to conduct research and development (R&D) in Canada.

New Ventures BC Market Validation Training
A free, self-guided online program, open to anyone in BC with a tech or small business idea.

National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program
NRC IRAP provides advice, connections, and funding to help Canadian small and medium-sized businesses increase their innovation capacity and take ideas to market.

MaRS Startup Tool Kit
As series of resources from the mentor community at MaRS Accelerator

Online events and content for the startup community

Must-Read Books for Entrepreneurs

These reading resources gathered by VentureLabs' mentors will provide you with foundational knowledge about entrepreneurship and imperative advice on growing your business. Learn from the best through their own words!

Machine, Platform, Crowd: Harnessing Our Digital Future

By: Andrew McAfee, Erik Brynjolfsson

New York Times bestseller Machine Platform Crowd outlines three core aspects of the modern digital revolution: rebalancing of minds and machines, products versus platforms, and core business and crowd. This resource is crucial for companies learning about marketplaces and platforms.

Available: Amazon | SFU Library


The Right It: Why So Many Ideas Fail and How to Make Sure Yours Succeed

By: Alberto Savoia

The law of market failure says up to 90 percent of new ideas will fail shortly after they launch; regardless of promise, commitment, and execution. Award-winning author and Director of Engineering and Innovation Agitator in Google’s Ad’s department, Albert Savoia helps readers avoid being the 90% with detailed case studies, a lesson on creating your own hard data, market engagement strategies, and an introduction to the concept of a pretotype.

Available: Amazon

Exponential Organizations - Why new organizations are ten times better, faster and cheaper than yours (and what to do about it)

By: Salim Ismail

Exponential Organizations challenge the linear way traditional companies get bigger by leveraging assets like community, big data, algorithms, and new technology into achieving performance benchmarks better than their peers. Readers learn how any company, from a startup to a multi-national, can become an ExO, streamline its performance, and grow to the next level.

Available: Amazon | SFU Library

Traction: Get a Grip on Your Business

By: Ging Wickman

Traction teaches readers about The Entrepreneurial Operating System, a practical method for achieving ideal business success. Read the secret to strengthening six key components of your business. Traction is employed by many start-up organizations for strategy.

Available: Amazon

Creating Great Choices - a Leader’s Guide to Integrative Thinking

By: Jennifer Riel, Roger L. Martin

Creating Great Choices clearly illustrates how integrative thinking works and how to use it to get what you need. This book reveals stories from successful integrative thinkers and blends storytelling, theory, and hands-on advice to help any leaders or managers making a difficult decision. 

Available: Amazon

Story Design: The Creative Way to Innovate

By: Denise Withers

Denise Withers teaches how to use story design to capture an audience, taking from her 35 years of work as a filmmaker, academic, and consultant. Much of start-up life is about articulating your story in a way that will capture the attention of customers. Use this resource to identify whether your vision and purpose are reaching the intended audience.

Available: Amazon

Ten Types of Innovation: The Discipline of Building Breakthroughs

By: Larry Keeley

This visual book helps companies diagnose patterns of innovation within industries, identify innovation opportunities, and evaluate how companies are performing against the competition. Use this as a resource for innovative principles that will bring meaningful and sustainable growth to your organization.

Available: Amazon | SFU Library

Platform Revolution: How Networked Markets are Transforming the Economy - and How to Make Them Work For You

By: Geoffrey G. Parker, Marshall W. Van Alstyne, Sangeet Paul Choudary

Cutting-edge businesses like Uber, Airbnb, Amazon, Apple, and PayPal were market disruptors when they first launched. These platform businesses revolutionized the way we do business in a two-sided marketplace.  This book is a practical guide on how to start and run your own successful platform business.

Available: Amazon

Zero to One: Notes on Startups, or How to Build the Future

By: Peter Thiel

Legendary entrepreneur and investor Peter Thiel presents Zero to One, which offers a once optimistic view of progress in America and a fresh way of thinking about innovation. This resource teaches companies how to ask critical questions that lead to finding value in unexpected places.

Available: Amazon | SFU Library

Organize for Complexity: How to Get Life Back Into Work to Build the High-Performance Organization

By: Niels Pflaeging

A better way to think about the organization of your company and your team. Stop thinking management and begin thinking interconnected teams that lead, manage and do in their own self-organizing way.

Available: Amazon

Steve Blank: Startup Tools

By: Steve Blank

Prolific writer, Thinker’s 50 Author, and recognized innovation thought leader has worked tirelessly to create and host the best collection of startup tools and resources on the web. The depth and variety of tools for every company at this site are exceptional.

Available: Steve Blank’s Website