Building Our Team
After completing a national outreach and recruitment campaign throughout fall and winter 2014/15, Global Vision selected (out of hundreds of applicants) 40 of the nation’s finest young leaders to serve as Junior Team Canada (JTC) Ambassadors, representing their communities and country on a trade mission to the People’s Republic of China. Each JTC Ambassadors submitted online applications in the form of video or written essay submissions. Ambassadors were selected based on their ability to communicate, lead and work in a team, but most importantly because of their commitment to their country and community.
China, Here We Come!
From July 28th – August 13th, Junior Team Canada departed Canada for a three-city, seventeen-day mission with the objective of strengthening bilateral trade, investment and friendships during the China-Canada Year of People-to-People and Cultural Exchanges. Following Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s official visit to China in November 2014, JTC supported our partners-enterprises and the federal government’s Global Markets Action Plan by engaging Chinese industry, government, civil society and youth leaders to market Canada’s strengths, identify business opportunities, gather market intelligence and contacts.
Developing as Young Professionals
Armed with the 5 Step Game Changer (the Global Vision leadership, personal development, cross-cultural training, and international business bible) the Ambassadors had the opportunity to hone their skills in real-time. After raising $5,500 from corporate and community partners back home, JTC rose to the challenge of promoting Canadian industry and culture while overseas while developing as young professionals- Canada’s next best class of international movers and shakers.
The Ambassadors- coming from every province and region of the nation- not only developed their individual professional skills, but also (and perhaps even more importantly) worked on the ground to come together as a team to strategically use their individual attributes to meet the many challenges set before them- going from “me” to “We”. As JTC Ambassador Nicole Zhao (Toronto, ON) put it, “the greatest part about seeing our team connection form is how natural leaders arose, and how individual strengths and weaknesses were highlighted. By combining our strengths, the team became much stronger than any single individual effort. We each built on each other’s strengths and helped each other improve our weaknesses. At the end of the mission, I not only took back the memories but the lessons learned through fulfilling our mandates, through peers, and through the new culture we experienced”. Indeed, as Global Vision founder & president Terry Clifford, C.M. is often fond of saying, “all of us are better than any one of us”.
Uncovering Opportunities in Western China
In order to identify new opportunities, Junior Team Canada travelled to the bustling commercial cities of Chongqing, Chengdu and Guangzhou in Western China. As Canadian Commercial Consul David Perdue noted, “these cities offer niche opportunities for Canadian businesses, perhaps more so than the more saturated coastal markets like Shanghai or Beijing”.
In addition to completing individual mandates provided by our Canadian partners, JTC focused on investigating opportunities for Canadian businesses in economic sectors with particular growth potential in the Chinese marketplace such as: agriculture, engineering, education, foreign direct investment, information-technology, manufacturing, natural resources, and professional services (law, finance, real estate and immigration).
JTC: Consistently Providing Value-Added
Throughout the whirlwind mission, JTC uncovered opportunities and established a truly Golden Rolodex of key stakeholders in China that is already opening new doors for our Canadian partner-enterprises, showcasing the tangible value-added results Junior Team Canada consistently delivers.
Junior Team Canada, no CEOs or diplomats, but a team of young professionals dedicated to their communities and country accomplished all of this. Now back in Canada, JTC is delivering on mandates set by our partners. Our Ambassadors are committed to sharing their newfound knowledge in communities across the nation and around the globe while they continue to get the experience that matters.