Have you used crowdsourcing for your business? Many entrepreneurs face the challenge of finding time and resources to address all of the tasks of running their own business. With resource and time limitations and an ever expanding list of responsibilities, doing it all can be very challenging. Crowdsourcing is one way to shorten this list. By outsourcing to other people some of these tasks and responsibilities - such as designing a logo or website for your business - you can focus on the actions which require your greater attention.

Crowdsourcing can also be a source of making income. It provides you with the opportunity to make money online (through bidding on projects and tasks) and the flexibility to determine your own schedule. You may register at one or several of the crowdsourcing sites and open yourself for business every day.

A few sites are highlighted below:

Branding sites - To find and/or offer design services

These websites help you crowdsource designs for your business. The work is completed following a fairly similar stepwise process:
Step 1: The client posts a brief description of their project on the website.
Step 2: Designers start to work on the project.
Step 3: The client reviews the different designs and requests modifications if needed.
Step 4: The client selects their favorite! –Logos and graphic design. –Logos, websites and graphic design projects. – Logos, websites, T-shirts, banners and business cards.– Logos only. – Logos, websites, icons, business cards, brochures, banner ads, T-shirts, stationary and print and packaging.

Freelancing sites – To find and/or offer your services online – Platform for hiring freelancers’ online and finding freelance work. – Platform for hiring freelancers’ online and finding freelance work. – Marketplace for hiring freelancers or finding freelance work. – Find virtual contractors to complete work or offer your services as a contractor.

Handy work contractors – To find and/or offer contracting services – Helps you to hire contractors of specific categories including: Carpenters, handyman, electrician, landscaper, painter, plumbing and roofer. - Lets you find contractors for your ‘handy’ projects. - Helps you to find contractors and bid on projects. - Shows ‘How to’ videos of handy work allowing you to complete work basic construction work such as painting, laying tiles etc by yourself. You can also hire a contractor to complete complex tasks.


Business tools

Social Media management - Allows you to manage and measure your social networks. – Allows you to manage your twitter and Facebook accounts.

Social Media platforms – Allows you to share links of up to 140 characters. or Google plus - Google’s new social network which allows you to share links, photos, videos etc. – A social networking service that allows you to connect and share with people or businesses that you know.

Productivity tools – Lets you track time and prepare online invoices. – Helps you schedule group events such as appointments, conference calls, group meetings etc. – Helps you to efficiently manage your to-do list online.

Website or blog creation tools – Free and simple way to create a website or blog. – Another free and simple way to create your website or blog. – Allows you to easily create and share web pages.


Small Business Development Resources

Canada Business

A Canadian resource on entrepreneurship that covers everything from business planning to registering your business.

Address: 3rd Floor
151 Yonge Street
Toronto, Ontario M5C 2W7
Tel: 1-888-576-4444

The Small Business Program for Regent Park and Neighbouring Communities

This annual program run by the Rotman School of Management helps entrepreneurs convert their business idea intoa business plan. The month-long evening program targets entrepreneurs with a practical business idea, who reside in target areas including Regent Park, Moss Park and St. James Town and other neighbouring communities. Further information on the program can be found here.

Internet Business Development for Entrepreneurs (IBDE)

IBDE is a six month program open to anyone interested in learning web development and focuses on Web Essentials and Web Advanced programs. Through this program, participants can build their own business websites under the guidance of qualified college instructors using industry-standard software. They also gain valuable technology skills and earn a college certificate as they build their business online. For more information and to apply online, visit the program website here.
For any questions on this program, please call 1-888-9-ASPIRE (1-888-927-7473).

The Business Abilities Program

The Business Abilities program is geared to persons living with a disability and interested in entrepreneurship. Participants explore and develop their business idea by working sequentially through an online curriculum and receive one-on-one assistance from their own personal business coach. Interested participants can apply online here.
For any questions on this program, please call 1-888-9-ASPIRE (1-888-927-7473).

Toronto Business Development Centre - BIZ Futures program

Focuses on providing skills training and one-on-one advisory support to help participants develop their business plan.


Health Resources

CAMH – Centre for Addiction and Mental Health

CAMH provides a wide range of support including treatment programs including assessment, brief early interventions, and inpatient programs, continuing care, outpatient services, and family support. For information or support for a mental health or addiction concern, call (416) 595-6111 (within Toronto) or 1-800-463-6273 (toll free). CAMH switchboard: (416) 535-8501.

CMHA - Canadian Mental Health Association – Ontario Division

CMHA, Ontario Division is a volunteer led, professionally managed charitable organization, with a community focus, dealing with all aspects of mental health and mental illness.
For more information contact:
180 Dundas St, W, Suite 2301,
Toronto, Ontario M5G 1Z8
Tel: 416 977-5580
Or click here to locate a branch.

Connex Ontario Health Services Information

Connex Ontario offers province-wide information and referral from:
• Mental Health Service Information Ontario, 1-866-531-2600
• Drug and Alcohol Registry of Treatment, 1-800-565-8603
• Ontario Problem Gambling Helpline, 1-888-230-3505

Accessing Mental Health Services

This article provides some advice on knowing when to seek help and where to go for anyone who is experiencing a mental illness.


Social Assistance and Entrepreneurship

Ontario Disability Support Program (ODSP) and Entrepreneurship

People with disabilities who are starting their own business can get help from community service providers to develop and implement a business plan. (Ministry of Community and Social Services (MCSS)).
Tel: 416-314-5700

Ontario Works (OW) and Entrepreneurship

Are you currently receiving Ontario Works benefits and would like to start your own business?
Benefits include continuing to receive financial assistance for up to one year; business planning and training and mentoring and coaching. This program is run by various organizations in Ontario.
Tel: 416-392-2635

Employment Insurance (EI) and Entrepreneurship

The Ontario Self-Employment Benefit provides unemployed people who are or have recently been eligible for Employment Insurance with income and entrepreneurial support while they develop and start their business.
Tel: 1-800-387-5656