After completing university by night school while working in a chartered accountants office in the day, Peter Brown passed his chartered accountant exams in 1977 and from there, sold everything his wife and him had to backpack around the world.
When returning from his adventures with only $30.00, $300.00 in traveler’s cheques and a $270 Visa bill, he used that $30.00 to start his own public accounting business, which in five years grew to employ four people. Peter then decided to sell his firm to a national accounting firm, where he continued to work for four years before returning back to entrepreneurship. Years later, with a management consulting business, and financial planning business under his belt, it was 2008 when Peter decided to sell his financial planning business he had grew tremendously in ten years, to focus on coaching other entrepreneurs.
Peter had great mentors throughout his many years in business and while he didn’t seek out opportunities to become a mentor himself initially, an opportunity presented itself with the Summer Company Board. Knowing the value his mentors had on him, it was a no-brainer that Peter said yes to this opportunity.
“Watching the progress that mentees make, often quite quickly and knowing that you are helping someone with something that is important and even engrossing to them,” is what Peter describes as being the most rewarding part of mentoring young entrepreneurs. One of his mentees, Mark Watson, explained that what makes Peter a stand out mentor is that: “He takes the time to listen and fully understand my challenges… I also really admire him for continually educating himself and his willingness to share what he’s just learned. He ‘holds your feet to the fire’ when needed and praises you when deserved.”
There’s no question why Peter’s dedication landed him as one of the 2016 BDC Mentorship Award finalists, and as someone who has seen the value mentoring has on entrepreneurs, he encourages other professionals to become a business mentor too. “At the risk of sounding trite, there are great rewards of becoming a mentor. I learn a lot about many things because the mentees talk about them, it keeps my mind open and active. It is also a good feeling to see the progress and successes the mentees achieve.”
Written By: Lauren Marinigh, Social Media & Content Creation Coordinator, Futurpreneur Canada