Business Skills Development Course
The Nicole Holland

Business Skills Development Course

  • Post author:
  • Post category:Vendors
Advancing Crystal Beach and the organizers of the Crystal Beach Makers Market are presenting a 24 Module Business Skills Development Course aimed specifically at Vendors and their unique challenges and potential for growth.
Our three powerhouse instructors, Nicole Holland, Rita Hansen Sterne, and Leah Feor, have developed a synergistic course comprised of 3 sections of 8 Modules each.
Any Vendor having participated in the Market during the 2019 Season, to date, is eligible for the full 24 Module Course. Any new Vendors in 2019 will be eligible for any full remaining sections, and any partial remaining sections at the discretion of the organizers
This course is worth over $6000.00. Funded by the Niagara Region’s Niagara Prosperity Grant, we can offer it to our Vendors at NO CHARGE.

When One Wins, We All Win!
Nicole Holland, The Nicole Holland

Nicole will be focusing on Marketing and Online Networking, with the goal of creating more foot traffic at the Market.

Planning for Market Vendors – A Strategic Approach
Rita Hansen Sterne, PhD (Management)

Rita Hansen Sterne will take us back to basics, to building a business from the ground up and implementing the concepts.

Effective and Watertight Business Plan Creation
Leah Feor, BCom

Writing a business plan is essential for your success as an entrepreneur. You will not be left to struggle with standardized forms that don’t really fit your business idea, or with vague suggestions about how to proceed. You will develop an effective business plan ready to implement your idea. It will help you clearly express your unique selling position, research market potential, develop customer profiles, prepare a financial plan with 12 and 24 month cash flow projections as well as determine advertising and promotion strategies.

Social Medial for Market Vendors – The Backbone for Building a Business Online
Serafina Thoma, BA (Multimedia & Communications), Post Graduate in Public Relations

Serafina Thoma will teach the basics of Instagram, Facebook and website building in order to create a presence online that will promote their businesses. This course will teach business owners how to maintain a brand and good PR by using free social media tools in order to create, organize and post content effectively.

June 18th (Nicole) When One Wins, We All Win – Introduction

  • Introduction to program and vision for a thriving market and community. A lesson on streamlining our individual objectives to benefit the whole


June 25th (Nicole) Making Your Vendor Booth Irresistible

  • In this lesson you will learn how to make your booth irresistible to market-goers, and how to effortlessly convert lookie-loos into customers and brand advocates


July 2nd (Nicole) The Truth About Branding

  • More information to come


July 9th (Nicole) Social Media Marketing Basics

  • More information to come


July 16th (Rita) Organising Business Planning Through Strategy

  • Introduction to Business Development and Implementation


July 23rd (Rita) Assessing Your Business Environment

  • An Overview of Planning for Your Business


July 30th (Rita) How is Value Created In Your Business?

  • Understanding Your Business Environment


August 13th (Rita) Categorizing Issues

  • Understanding Your Business Activities


August 20th (Rita) Strategic Direction for Your Business

  • Challenges and Opportunities


August 27th (Rita) Planning and Strategic Options

  • Prioritizing for Business Success


September 3rd (Rita) Product-Service Matrix

  • Git ‘Er Done –  Options and Action Plans


September 10th (Serafina) Facebook

  •  How to set up a Facebook business page, schedule posts, create /
    manage events and organize tabs.


September 17th (Serafina) Instagram

  •  How to set up an Instagram Business account, use of hashtags,
    insta stories, analytics, understanding the algorithm, sync to Facebook


September 24th (Rita) SWOT+ Analysis

  • Measuring Your Success


October 1st (Serafina) Square App

  • Benefits of using the Square, tracking sales, creating an inventory/menu, how to set it up tutorial style.


October 15th (Serafina) Scheduling Posts and Content Creation

  • Creating a content calendar in order to spread out the various
    types of content for your social media platforms.
  • Using Facebook to schedule posts, and learning the pros & cons of Sprout social.


October 22nd (Serafina)  Setting Up Google Business and Yelp Pages

  • How to set up the page, add content and become an active member
    in those communities.


October 29th (Serafina)  Basic Photography

  • How to take a good photo with a mobile camera
  • Basic editing skills
  • How your photography can get your through the winter


November 5th (Leah) All About The Business Plan

  • Discussing the purpose and use of a business plan
  • Reviewing what’s required to complete a business plan
  • Identifying information gaps by completing a checklist of required content to prepare a business plan
  • Defining action steps to complete the remainder of the course and ultimately prepare a business plan (including a financial plan)


November 12th (Leah) Expressing Your Business Model

  • Learning how to express an overview of your business including details about its history, purpose, key partnerships, target audience, and legal structure
  • Specifying your revenue streams and cost structure
  • Defining your business’s current position and growth plan


November 19th (Leah) Deeper Dive Into Your Business’s Revenue Streams and Cost Structure

  • Building on activities from last week, specifically related to how revenue is generated and costs are managed


November 26th (Leah) Communicating Your Marketing Strategy and Operational Plan (including a Human Resources Plan)

  • Building on previous sessions facilitated by Nicole Holland and Rita Hansen Sterne to bring together information that will be used to communicate your marketing strategy and operational requirements to manage and grow your business


January 7th (Leah) Planning for Tax Season

  • Learning about how to create or improve an accounting system to make tax season more manageable
  • Identifying key types of information required to prepare a financial plan for your business


January 14th (Leah) Developing Your Financial Plan

  • Learning how to present financial information – both historical performance and future projections


January 21st (Leah) Preparing Your Business Plan


January 28th (Leah) Pitching Your Business Plan

  • Learning how to present your ideas and effective ways to pitch your business plan

Nicole Holland, The Nicole Holland

The Nicole Holland

Nicole Holland is the secret weapon that innovators, disruptors, and thought leaders around the world turn to when they want to increase their visibility, credibility, and profitability through PR and digital media marketing.

She’s been named in the Huffington Post as one of “50 Must-Follow Women Entrepreneurs in 2017”, featured in multiple publications such as Forbes and Entrepreneur Magazine, where her podcast was recognized as one of the “48 Best Podcasts for Entrepreneurs” to listen to, and has been interviewed on over 100 trending podcasts.

Nicole travels internationally to speak on stage and work with clients and is exceedingly excited to share her passion for helping amazing people build amazing businesses that allow them to enjoy life fully and make a meaningful impact on the world here in her hometown of Crystal Beach.

Rita Hansen Sterne, PhD (Management)

Rita is a curious person and lifelong learner. Her learning journey led her through an early career in sales and marketing, a variety of management roles, two decades of entrepreneurial work, and many opportunities to teach at colleges, universities, and for-profit and not-for-profit organizations. 

Most recently, Rita’s curiosity led to complete her PhD (Management) at the University of Guelph with a focus on strategy, a field research that helps us explore and understand how organizations become successful.  As a result, Rita has in-depth knowledge about the impact on consumers of a physical environment and the impact of regulatory environments on businesses. She particularly enjoys sharing different perspectives on challenges with food industry businesses and social entrepreneurs.

When she takes a break, Rita loves local food and drink and outdoor activities. She lives with her partner Mike in Crystal Beach, Ontario.

Leah Feor, BCom

Leah Feor is the owner of Simply Sustainable, a small business that has evolved from a fair trade mobile shop to a strategic consulting firm serving entrepreneurs with a social or environmental mission. Helping clients balance their Triple Bottom Line – people, planet, profit – is Leah’s utmost goal, and is supported by her undergraduate degree in accounting from the Telfer School of Management at the University of Ottawa and a graduate certificate in Environmental Management and Assessment from Niagara College.

Leah was born and raised in Niagara Falls. She studied in Ottawa and has traveled extensively throughout Latin America. Now residing in Crystal Beach – close to her family and the natural beauty of Niagara – she teaches at Niagara College in the School of Business and Management and is completing a Master of Environment and Business (MEB) from the University of Waterloo.

Leah is an active volunteer in her community. She serves as a member of the Social Enterprise Niagara Planning Committee. As a member of the committee, Leah promotes awareness of social entrepreneurship and social innovation, contributes as a mentor to aspiring entrepreneurs, and speaks at events and workshops.  Leah also serves as a board member for the Niagara Peninsula Conversation Authority and the Fort Erie Public Library.

Serafina Thoma, BA

Serafina Thoma
Serafina Thoma is a McMaster University graduate from the Multimedia & Communications program and a proud Hamilton artist. She uses her skills in the media world towards her own jewelry brand in order to create YouTube videos, graphic design, photography and web coding. She also continued her education at Niagara College to obtain a Post-Graduate certificate in Public Relations. Through her post-secondary education, Serafina has gathered the skills and experience in order to professionally build her own brand and work as a freelance artist for other brands such as Santucci Law Firm and Euphoradio.

Serafina’s jewelry brand _HempTingz was founded in 2014 as a way to contribute to tuition funds. Upon completing school, the brand flourished into a staple brand at Hamilton’s monthly Art Crawls. In 2018, Serafina was featured on CHCH News for speaking out about saving the Art Crawl community in Hamilton and she continues to advocate for local and independent artists. Today, Serafina vends at major music festivals and markets in the Greater Toronto Area, including KENSINGTON FLEA MARKET (Toronto), SUPERCRAWL (Hamilton), FESTIVAL OF FRIENDS (Hamilton), WINONA PEACH FESTIVAL and CRYSTAL BEACH MAKER’S MARKET.