MANIWAKI. This community north of Ottawa no longer requires its entrepreneurs to get a band resolution. The Band still regulates certain businesses, like transport, communications, anything that is potentially harmful to the community. But any standard business can get a licence.
“People can start 20 restaurants if they want,” says Kungl. “You have to give entrepreneurs freedom. People aren’t even given the chance to fail. If you fail, you learn, and you get stronger. Business is not about being perfect. It’s about learning from your mistakes.”
Bands ususally open a business because the community needs it, and no one else is doing it. But they should find entrepreneurs to start or take over these businesses.
“In 99.9% of the cases,” says Kungl. “Band-owned, bureaucratically-run, politcally-driven businesses don’t make it.
They eventually lose tremendous amounts of money because it is not their own money they are spending. The heads usually have to wear other hats, and can’t devote enough time to the business.”
Bands and development agencies can do the best work by making it easier for other people to start a business. By creating affordable commercial space, by training people, offering workshops and other support for prospective entrepreneurs.
JUST DO IT!
Go ahead and start your business with what you already have. Yes it is true that you need bandresolutions, even if you are not asking for money.
But the problem is that it can take forever! There is also the problem of location, people arebusy and the list goes on. Just get started and do not get caught in the red-tape of politics.As you go along, you can work on the blocks.
We ask you the readers, potential business people and the people running the political andbureaucratic systems to send us possible solutions to the above mentioned blocks. What can we doas a community to make the road easy for people to start a business? Let us be realistic and notidealistic.
We are requesting constructive criticism: remember, most people in the system are trying theirbest and they are frustrated too. Not put-downs, but what is really going on and how we canapproach an obstacle and work to overcome it.