Entrepreneurial thinking is the art and practice of solving great problems. It is a mindset rooted in courage, curiosity, compassion, and much more.
When faced with a problem they don't know the answer to, or given a challenge they don't know how to tackle, entrepreneurial thinking gives youth both the confidence to believe "I'll figure it out!" and the determination to follow through with action.
At YELL, we believe entrepreneurial thinking is valuable for any path, career, or study. And like learning a language, math, music, athletics and more, entrepreneurial thinking is most easily developed in our youth.
YELL’s 7 C’s for Entrepreneurial Thinking
- Courage – Courageous citizenry, bold thinking, taking action in the face of uncertainty, and overcoming a fear of rejection. Confidence is being sure of an outcome, courage is taking action even when the outcome is uncertain.
- Curiosity – Explore, investigate, observe, play. Curiosity is not heavy - it is a spark and our motivation and enduring drive. Curiosity is not about being right, it allows us to be wrong in the pursuit of the right answer.
- Compassion – Towards self and others. Compassion is the engine behind human-centered innovation and positive outcomes for people and planet. Compassion requires investing in our emotional intelligence.
- Critical and Creative Thinking – Pattern recognition, rigorous analysis, and unrestrained connection building. It finds a way and does not let fear stop the uncovering of truth, clarity, precision, and accuracy. It is a dance between sound evidence and a whimsical or fresh perspective.
- Cultivation – A growth-mindset put into continuous action and with a lens of compassionate curiosity. It requires a practice of consistent reflection to inform future action, it requires us to face our fears and inadequacies, and it provides fertile soil for dreaming new possibilities.
- Communication – Built through practice. Great communication requires empathetic listening, powerful question asking, a ruthless commitment to providing clarity, and a honed ability to translate between audiences.
- Canadian - Canadian roots in a global playground. As innovators we are unrestrained by borders but deeply connected to the people and land closest to us.
At YELL we focus on training minds towards 'great entrepreneurship' and embed the best practices of social innovation and social entrepreneurship across our programming. We strive towards all of our students applying these within their entrepreneurial pursuits.
It is our belief that if we want to live in a bright, prosperous, and sustainable future, all companies will need to strive towards the ideals of social innovation.
Whether it's the company that manufactures the spoon you eat with or the design firm that creates the landscapes you walk in, all companies will need to maximize the value they create for their stakeholders, act responsibly, not cause harm to people or planet, reduce waste, and to consider the tough decisions between profit and good.
The best medical practices of the 1800s are viewed as barbaric today and we find it unthinkable that doctor’s recommended tobacco products in the 1950s. In the same way, in the 2050s
- As our scientific and technology understanding increases;
- As this planet shrinks (with a growing population and an increasingly connected economy);
- And as our collective understanding of human and animal prosperity matures,
We believe it will be the great entrepreneurial minds of the next few decades who lead that charge, utilizing the best practices of the social innovators before them.
At YELL, we ask ourselves the question, how do we equip youth to APPLY and DO more SOCIAL in their ENTREPRENEURSHIP.
Investing in Education
At YELL, we stand firmly in the belief and practice of investing in our educators. We, our volunteers, and the entrepreneurial leaders we invite into classrooms are not the experts at teaching, our YELL educators are.
- We Curate Great Educational Content - This keeps content in classrooms up to date and current with real-world examples and exercises. YELL works with some of the best experts and minds in entrepreneurship and education to create and refine content that we can provide to our educators for free. We work closely with our teachers, gather feedback from multiple stakeholders, and rely on the advice and input of some of the best educators in the field to continually refine and update our materials.
- We Leverage the Stories and Experiences of Entrepreneurial Leaders - YELL works within a school's community to source and invite exceptional entrepreneurial leaders to be guest speakers. Speakers share their stories and come ready for a 2-way dialogue with students, as students’ curiosity unfurl the mysteries of life after and beyond school doors.
- We Support Real-World Learning with Mentors - YELL has a vast network of mentors to support teams of students. Mentors play the simultaneous role of advisor, cheerleader and challenger, as they work with students over multiple months to help them investigate needs and opportunities in their community, come up with innovative solutions to what they identify, and test their ideas and innovations with potential customers.
Our Revenue Model
YELL Canada is a registered Canadian charity, and all of our programming is financed and brought to you by the generous donations of individuals, foundations, and companies.
At YELL, we see our role in education similar to the role of hospital foundations in health care. While provincial funding takes care of the foundation, we exist to identify the gaps and the new and emerging opportunities. In Canada, one of those big gaps and opportunities is in supporting entrepreneurial and innovative mindsets to equip youth for a rapidly changing future.
If you would like to learn more about how making a tax-receiptable donation to YELL can create a lasting legacy for young Canadians in your community, click on the DONATE button at the top right-hand corner of the page or click on CONTACT to speak with us directly.