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  • 2019-05-14 9:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    When I moved to Toronto, I attended multiple newcomers’ programs to start my job research in Canada. The majority of them advised me to ask people over coffee to build a network. Many questions pop-out in my head: ¿coffee?, ¿with who?, ¿who should I ask?, ¿how should I approach them?, ¿what should I say?. It was then, when I realized that the first person I should take out for coffee was myself; I needed to identify the strategy to approach these people and the way I will be positioning myself.

    Next day, I grab my laptop and walk into the first Tim Hortons I found; I needed to immerse into the Canadian experience. While drinking a double-double and revising my resume, I remember I moved to Canada to develop my career in marketing in an English-speaking country; therefore, I needed to connect with the Canadian chapter of companies, associations, and institutions that I was working with in Mexico, sort of a mirror effect. For example, I will reach out to IAB Canada with the approach that I worked with IAB Mexico; I have experience with their services and knowledge in operations in a different market. My strategy triggered the way I will be positioning myself: a professional marketer with experience in the LATAM region.

    I invited for coffee people that I met at newcomers programs, events, conferences, LinkedIn, etc. I had 5-8 coffees a week with different personalities of the media and advertising industry, and by continually repeating my personal branding I realized that Hispanics stand out in the market because of our spirit, sense of community and hard workers stereotype.

    The cheerful spirit is hard to find in a country with low temperatures and short daylight seasons. Hispanics are well-known for their cheerful spirit in a work environment; greeting people with enthusiasm, creating a friendly atmosphere, involving themselves in social and charity company programs, etc. Multiple studies have proved that cold weather affects mental health, causing disorders associated with Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD). Let’s face it! If you can choose between working with a person who is optimistic vs. a depressive person, ¿which one will you pick?

    The sense of community comes from those many times when your mom or dad asked you to help your uncle, aunt, cousin, grandpa or grandma. All those extra errands pay off today in a new country by bringing you into a collaboration environment. The truth is that we become proactive advocates of teamwork. Hispanics tend to collaborate at teamwork tasks, the extra mile for us means to invite other members of the team to bring out the best of themselves to achieve positive results. We act collectively because it is in our DNA, our social structure comes from a high sense of community.

    The Hispanic stereotype hasn’t changed; we are hard workers and we enjoy raising our hand to own our tasks. We value labor recognition as much as financial compensation. According to the World Bank, remittances represent the second or third most important source of income in national economies for Latin American countries. Even Hollywood validated the importance of our labor commitment with movies like “A Day Without Mexican” (2004); as social media with organic campaigns like #DayWithoutImmigrants; both contextually explaining how North American economies are built on Hispanic hard work.

    So next time, when you complain about the cold, reject to help others or choose to jump a task just because you are lazy, think twice. You may be avoiding “las bondades de ser Latino.” WE THE SOUTH!

  • 2019-05-14 9:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    When I first heard the term Smart City, I thought it was just one more buzz word in a world full of smartphones, smart homes and smart cars. I understood that perhaps some insightful marketer would qualify a city as smart for commercial purposes. Nevertheless, I was very curious in understanding a little more about the term and the technologies that form part of its ecosystem.

    Smart City is a broad concept that describes a city that uses technology to address major challenges like housing, accessibility, infrastructure, waste management, transportation, utilities, budgeting and services. A combination of technologies, like Internet of Things, Artificial Intelligence, Drones, Sensors and Blockchain enables the operation of a Smart City; and Big Data allows to analyze, measure and optimize the fulfillment. Smart cities aim to improve social, economic and environmental outcomes for its residents through a sound strategy, service modernization, sustainability and customer experience.

    The closest case to our community is the city of Toronto, where a vision and roadmap for the application of Smart City principles, including urban design, and the usage of cutting-edge technologies, is currently under development; whereas, a multinational tech company has a project to transform its waterfront into the world’s most technologically advanced neighborhood, including modern solutions to waste collection, sidewalks that melt snow, autonomous taxibots, air quality tracking, benches usage, heated walkways, retractable raincoats, energy usage, pedestrian counts, among other amenities.

    As with many innovations, smart cities have received opposition due to concerns on privacy, stating that constant surveillance may affect people’s behaviours, and possibly their own rights as citizens. Considering both points of views, a healthy discussion must be held regarding privacy, data ownership and governance, however both parties should base their opinion on facts, and not assumptions driven by fear or lack of knowledge.

    Smart Cities are indeed an emerging subject of innovation that is very related to Canada and the Toronto Community, and being vastly related to different technologies, it is one of Hispanotech’s focus for our events and workshops in 2019. If you want to know more about Smart Cities, visit https://hispanotech.ca/2019/04/07/upcoming-smart-city-event/ where as a member, you have a discount for our upcoming Smart City Vision event on May 16th, that will offer a Keynote and a panel where industry leaders will show how these innovations will affect people and the environment.

  • 2018-11-22 9:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Mr. Vargas has managed to provide his mentees with clever insights, clear recommendations, and great feedbacks; helping them clarify their professional objectives in Canada, improve their resume, and practice interview skills. Being the first person receiving this award, the staff hopes that our community pictures him as a role model, following his tips and best practices. Therefore, below we share an interview that aims to highlight his motivation, his tools and/or strategies to maximize mentee success in this program.As Hipanotech’s 2018 Mentorship Program comes to its end, the coordination staff has been able to identify the first mentor to make it to its new Mentorship ‘Hall of Fame’: William Vargas, a Systems Engineer, MBA and certified Project Management Professional (PMP®) with more than 15 years of experience providing IT and business consulting in the mining, insurance, and banking sectors for companies like Accenture, KPMG, and HQS Consulting. Having an impressive mentoring background, he has worked with 4 mentees in the current and past versions of this program (since 2015) catalyzing growth and effectively guided them towards obtaining jobs in their fields.


    How did the call to be a mentor arise and what motivates you to continue this type of contribution to Hispanotech’s professional community?

    Mr. Vargas:

    As part of the strong volunteering culture in Canada, it had always been in the back of my mind how could I give back to the community in a manner I would enjoy. Hispanotech’s Mentorship Program provided me with that perfect opportunity, as I was also mentoring young soon-to-be MBA graduates at the Schulich School of Business since 2014. My main motivation is the rewarding feeling of helping others to avoid some of the struggles that I had myself in the past. In addition, these experiences help me develop various ‘people’ skills, so important and relevant to my work as a Project Manager.


    How would you describe a healthy relationship between the Mentor and the Mentee?

    Mr. Vargas:

    I feel there is a healthy relationship when both parties feel committed and benefiting from their interaction. The mentee should not be the most interested and invested party in the mentorship experience; the mentor should acknowledge that there are mutual benefits. Obviously, there is the understanding that the mentee should be highly interested, particularly if she/he is seeking help on getting a job, supporting the general belief that she/he must put most of the effort. But things are not that straight-forward as each person is having her/his own challenges at a certain point, which might hinder them on investing the expected effort. It is here where the mentor could use and/or develop her/his skills on bringing the mentee to a spot where goals could be achieved. This is our development challenge as mentors.


    What Good Practices and/or methodological tools, do you understand, ensure the success in such relationship?

    Mr. Vargas:

    There are a couple of ‘tools’ that I feel have helped me on improving as a mentor. First, ensuring in the very beginning that we identify clear and achievable goals, while also setting a plan in a simple spreadsheet. That becomes our guideline. Second, be as responsive as possible to the requests from the mentees and provide positive feedback.


    What trait and/or aptitude, within your understanding, enable the Mentee to extract the greatest value from a mentoring program?

    Mr. Vargas:

    I think that commitment and a positive attitude are the most key factors for the mentees to get the best out of the program. These two things will help them allocate the necessary effort and time, while not give up that easily when things do not go as planned.


    Finally, how does the Hispanotech coordination staff contribute or complicate your work as a mentor?

    Mr. Vargas:

    Hispanotech has made an amazing job with the coordination and logistics for the program, which can be correlated with the increasing number of both mentors and mentees that enrol in every iteration of the program. Hispanotech’s staff have been ‘enablers’, and I never felt them as an obstacle in any way. The kick-off, midterm, and final sessions for each program are very valuable as they promote commitment and feedback. The idea of the super-mentors seems very good, although I am not sure how much the mentors are using it. Mentoring is a skill and not everybody has it naturally; it can be learned, and there is always room for improvement.

    Hispanotech’s Mentorship Program has been translating into great networking and real results thanks to the clever mentor-mentee matching performed by the coordination staff, and the great experience (and motivation) shown by its mentors.

    We congratulate Mr. Vargas in obtaining this honour and invite the whole community to give back to the community through volunteering. For now, we can’t wait for our next Mentorship Program session! Who will be the Mentor that will join William on the ‘Hall of Fame’?


    Written by Carlos Artilez, MEng, PMP

  • 2018-11-01 9:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Aiming to raise awareness and debunk the hype surrounding the data science of machine learning in security analytics strategies, Hispanotech proudly hosted the event “Applying artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) in Cybersecurity”. Its central tenet: “as threat actors innovate, so do the defenders, forcing security analytics to evolve beyond several security players’ machine learning claims”. The data science behind machine learning can be useful in larger analytics pipelines, and today’s needs call for everyone to join the conversation objectively; to do so, it is important to identify and evaluate the real value of vendors’ products and services – even without being a data scientist.

    This event – which consisted of an evening full of insights, networking and great refreshments – brought thought-provoking discussions with industry leaders. The Keynote Speaker, TK Keanini, a distinguished Engineer & Product Line CTO for Analytics at Cisco Systems, with more than 25 years of security experience as well as a founding member of many security standards (such as CVE), presented Security Analytics Today and Tomorrow: From Static Lists to Machine Learning. By stating that today’s “attackers are not breaking in, they are logging in”, Mr. Keanini shared that behavioural detection through machine learning can be used to recognize those ‘outlier’ log-ins and many more suspicious activities. Further, these techniques can find threats in encrypted data without decryption. Additionally, he highlighted that ‘utility’ should be the ultimate performance indicator for these algorithms and recommended buyers of cybersecurity solutions to opt for vendors that have an ‘open attitude’ to publish articles, white papers and/or contribute in open-sourced platforms.

    The second half of this event consisted of a panel discussion moderated by Fernando Martinez, Director of Consulting Services at CGI. It featured Mr Keanini accompanied by other leaders: Iain Paterson, Managing Director at Cycura with more than 15 years of experience in Information Security bridging the gap between technologists and senior leadership; Iman Abudagga, Data & Artificial Intelligence Product Lead at Microsoft and AI enthusiast with many years of experience in the ‘Cloud and Hosting’ business; Julean Albidone, AI Product Owner at Deloitte building the Applied Innovation Practice from the ground up by merging numerous technologies; and Eduardo Delgado, Enterprise Technology & Cybersecurity Associate VP at TD Bank leading cybersecurity initiatives.

    The panel discussed the ‘double-edge’ nature of AI (by being open-sourced, both enterprises and attackers have access to the same tools), AI’s scalability can accelerate cybersecurity efforts and how the cloud strengthens AI’s capabilities by its ability to collect and access big data. Panellists agreed that financial institutions, academics, politics and other commercial entities are beginning to join the conversation to unlock the power of AI and conquer possible cybersecurity threats.

    Hispanotech thanks the keynote speaker, panelists, KPMG and AGGlobe Services for making this incredible event possible.

  • 2018-10-24 5:38 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    “Being connected to a motivated mentor is both,

    priceless and a ‘must-have”

    As many other fellow professional immigrants, I came looking for a better future for my family and myself, willing to give the best of me to thrive in this great country. My arrival in Canada was very recent: I fully immigrated—that is, quit my job and sold (almost) everything to start a new life – in July this year.

    To provide some context, I am a Dominican professional with a BEng in Industrial Engineering (INTEC’07), a MEng in Engineering Management RIT’09) and a Project Manager Professional (PMP) certification. My experience expands through many sectors, starting in manufacturing and going through information technology (IT) and higher education; for employers such as Santo Domingo Institute of Technology (INTEC), GCS Systems (Dominican FinTech Startup), and Edwards Lifesciences (medical devices manufacturing). Upon my arrival, I knew very few people in the country, fewer in the GTA, and even fewer professionals with similar interests and profile that could, not only help me land my first Canadian experience but also guide me through the whole integration process.

    Luckily, I have always believed in the power of networking through professional non-profit organizations. It worked wonderfully for me in my country, and I decided to give it a try in this new (and bigger) challenge. After ‘googling’ and the following link after link, I got in touch with the Toronto Region Immigrant Employment Council (TRIEC) and—through their website – I landed (and subscribed) to Hispanotech. This is when I start reading about their successful 12-week Joint Mentorship Program aiming to “help internationally trained professionals make the transition to work in Canada, improve their skills and confidence while developing professional connections”. After applying to the program and being admitted, I have seen great results as early as its mid-term, generating the need to share my testimonial on how it is helping me achieve my objectives.

    The coordination staff behind the program matched my profile with William Vargas, also a PMP with more than 15 years of experience providing IT and business consulting in the mining, insurance, and banking sectors (to name a few) for companies like Accenture, KPMG, and HQS Consulting (to name even fewer). His mentoring background is even more impressive: he has served as a mentor for MBA students at Schulich School of Business since 2014 and for immigrant professionals at Hispanotech since 2015. So far in the program, Mr. Vargas provided me clever insights, clear recommendations, and great feedback. He has helped me to clarify my professional objectives in Canada, improve my resume, practice my interview skills, and successfully land my first Canadian job at DellEMC Canada.

    Formality is valuable, but flexibility is king, and one thing I have liked so far of Mr. Vargas’ approach to mentoring is his flexible and on-going way of communicating and working together. Always keeping a formal tone, we have managed to use WhatsApp, phone calls, email and casual meetings to work on the goals defined at the very beginning of the program. Thanks to Mr. Vargas’ guidance, the support of Hispanotech’s staff, and the necessary effort on my part, I have accelerated my integration within the professional Canadian labour market. By committing ourselves to work together since the beginning and respecting each other’s time and achievements, our mentor-mentee relationship is based on a cycle motivated towards reaching goals.

    From my perspective, the clever mentor-mentee matching performed by the coordination staff and the great experience (and motivation) shown by this mentor, has made possible that this 12-week Joint Mentorship Program translates into great networking and real results. My commitment to the program, the willingness to use whatever channel is available to enable flexible communication, and the close and on-going follow-up by Hispanotech’s staff, have made possible for me to see the results that each of the organizations behind the program are expecting: “To make the transition to work in Canada by improving skills and confidence while developing professional connections”. This experience has made me believe even more firmly that being connected to a motivated mentor is both, priceless to any professional, and a must-have to those arriving at a new country.

    Written By
    Carlos Artilez, Meng, PMP

  • 2018-03-08 9:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Webinars are a great way to connect to prospect clients and actual clients, if you are preparing one, read this post to learn how to publicize your webinar and attract lots of leads. This post will not help you write, perform or edit a webinar, we will write about this in another post soon. Meanwhile, here are the 5 steps to get your webinar crowded:

    Step 1: Create a landing page

    A landing page will help you to show the world what is your webinar about, when is happening and how to get in the attendant list.

    Be clear about the topics you will be talking about in your webinar, also write in bold everything your attendants will get by watching your webinar for example. what skills are they going to develop? Remember to put a sign-up form with only the minimum fields necessary for people to be in the attendant list, name and email are enough.

    Also, if you link your landing page with Google Analytics you will see how much traffic and how people behaves when reading your landing page.

    Also do this: If you have a website apart from your landing page use popups to offer the free webinar to the people that visit your website.

    Step 2: Set up a mailing list

    The sign-up form you placed in the landing page (step 1) need to be connected with a mailing list, you can do your mailing manually but if there are free services like Mailchimp and SendinBlue you must use them to optimize your workflow.

    This mailing list will help you reach your attendants later if there is a change of schedule, you need to send material or other announcements later, also you’ll get a lead database to use later to announce new webinars via mailing.

    Once you get a new registration in your form (which is in your landing page) send a welcome message, write in the email everything your attendants will need to attend your webinar like any software or browser, remember to include the date and hour of the webinar in every email you send.

    Remember to: Provide an Unsubscribe link in your emails to comply privacy laws.

    Step 3: Advertise (for free or in a low budget)

    You don’t need a big budget to let people know about your webinar. Nowadays we can advertise to thousands of people for as low as 1 dollar a day in Facebook.

    But first, try the free way. Use you Facebook page or personal profile (remember to set the privacy of your post as public) and your twitter account to post a couple of posts about the webinar. It’s important to use #hashtags in both Facebook and Twitter. If you have a good base of friends and followers, ask them to share and spread the word.

    If you don’t have a good number of followers and friends, then the best way is to spend a couple of bucks to publicize your webinar. Use Facebook adds and redirect those to your landing page.

    Do not forget to: Use an attractive image and a good headline, setting up your ad as an “Offer” It’s a good way to get more people interested.

    Step 4: Manage responses

    Remember to check every post you made (and every shared by your fiends post you can) for comments and answers, reply to all!

    People might ask questions by email too.

    If you are not getting the response you need to change the way you are advertising not the mediums but the copyright, change the words and images, make it attractive and remember to put yourself in the place of your prospect clients, what is that they need to read or see to sign up to your webinar?

    Remember to: Be polite and respond in an easy to read language.

    Step 5: Remind your attendants

    Now that you have some attendants signed up and a couple of days have passed, it’s time to send another email, a reminder email, don’t send a plain email with a date, make it attractive, give some new information or add something to catch the attention of the attendants

    Do not: Send too much reminders. 1 every week is enough and 1 before the day of the webinar. Sending one a couple of hours before is also good.

    That’s it! Break a leg and put in a good show. Remember to make your webinar attractive use animations in your slides, show your face if possible, make questions every certain amount of time and do a Q&A session at the end and try to answer all the questions live.

    Written By:

    Josue Sotelo 
    Digital Marketing Team
  • 2017-11-22 9:00 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The success of Hispanotech’s Mentorship Program really is fostered by the effort and teamwork of both mentors and mentees. We had the opportunity to interview a pair who has already had successful results during the 2017 Mentorship program.

    Mentee: Jonathan Loza Ruiz

    Q: What did you think of the program so far?

    JL: My overall experience has been good, from the pre-start program to the presentation / start-up and the meetings I’ve had with Angie, my mentor. As you know I am enrolled in the category of Entrepreneurship and, although I know it is a new branch that is being explored this year and which may not yet have accumulated knowledge or best practices, it has helped me today in very specific points.

    Q: Could you tell us more about these points of support?

    JL: Of course! I have four very specific points to describe:

    1. Set clear goals and steps to follow. Even before my first meeting with my mentor, I had only a set of ideas in my head, as well as some (disorderly) advances of what my project should be. However, it was at this meeting that we defined and set out on paper clear goals and steps to take. The goal now is to have a business plan and product / service attractive and ready to present to investors and potential customers towards the end of the program.
    2. Understand that the Canadian market have some differences with the Latin American market. In my case, the project that I am looking to develop considers the expansion of a Mexican company to Toronto. My mentor’s Canadian experience helps me to better understand the Canadian market and therefore adapt the few or many features of my offer to the local consumer. The same applies to the way of doing business because of my short experience in the country (less than 3 years).
    3. Possibility of connecting with professionals of interest, potential clients and other entrepreneurs. This is perhaps one of the most valuable benefits I can find myself and any other mentees of the program. Having the possibility, upon invitation or introduction of your mentor, to get up and be part of her network of contacts, I think it is most beneficial for one who as an immigrant in Canada is just beginning to develop. In my particular case, and although I may not always introduce myself to people from the sector that I will attack, it helps me a lot to connect and publicize my project, to perceive first-hand the reactions and to work on the feedback of what I can or I must improve before going on the market.
    4. Motivation (Stay on track). As a common employee of 9-5pm, looking to develop a ¨side hustle¨, our meetings are of vital importance, to be able to count on the support of someone as positive and ¨forward looking¨ as my mentor. It is very easy to throw the towel from time to time when everyday life is complicated. Being in this program, has motivated and forced me to continue working on my project step by step towards the objectives defined at the beginning, and although sometimes I do not advance at the ideal speed, it keeps me on the road.

    Mentor: Angelica Tellez

    Q: What has been your experience in this mentoring round?

    AT: This is my third year as a mentor and every year and every mentee is different. This year I have been mentoring an entrepreneur! In contrast to my previous experiences, this occasion has elevated the level of connection and complexity and commitment to my mentee.

    Q: What have you learned from this mentoring experience?

    AT: As I said, it is different and being an entrepreneur’s mentor always requires more attention and confidence in oneself. Curiously, you think you do not have the experience to support someone with this type of life project, however you realize that you actually know more than you imagine. All of our life lessons and past work are transferable and this has been my biggest lesson during this program.

    Q: Do you think you teach more than you learn?

    AT: Absolutely not! When there is a real commitment between mentor and mentee, learning and development is mutual. I have learned so much from myself as a person, as a professional and from our teamwork. I realize that when I give, I receive more and the satisfaction is much greater. I see that many of the things that I am learning as a mentor, I end up using with my professional team and that you really cannot afford not to take advantage of it. I have confirmed my ability to negotiate (time, visions), to show my empathy, to handle my stress, and my optimism.

    Q: What would your advice be for new mentors and mentees?

    AT: Do not waste this opportunity! The growth is enormous and the satisfaction of learning while helping, is priceless! And for the mentees, also do not miss this opportunity to be helped. Practice humility, altruism and tolerance; traits that are essential in any part of our life.

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