’Twas the night before Christmas, when all throughout MaRS
Not a creature was stirring, not even E101 regulars.
The stockings were hung in Phase II with great care,
In hopes that new tenants soon would be there.
The MaRSians were nestled all snug in their beds,
While visions of strat plans danced in their heads.
And Ilse in her kerchief, and Gord Nixon in his cap,
Had just settled down for a long winter’s nap.
When up on the roof there arose such a clatter,
MaRSians sprang from their beds to see what was the matter.
Away to the windows they rapidly flew,
And gazed open-mouthed at the scene in their view.
The moon hanging low over the Heritage Building roof
Gave the lustre of mid-day (or so it says in this spoof),
When, what to their wondering eyes should appear,
But a miniature sleigh, and eight tiny KPMGers.
With a little old driver, so lively and humane,
They knew in a moment it must be St. Zayna.
More rapid than eagles, her consultants they came,
And she whistled, and shouted, and called them by name!
“Now Brendan! Now Jake! Now, Simi and Vicky!
“That’s enough,” cried the MaRSians, “You’ll bankrupt our shop!”
“Study those clients! Measure that impact!
Now sales away! Jobs away! Cash away, all!”
As consultants who survey a wide range of MaRS clients
Their challenge was reporting on entrepreneurial giants!
So up to their eyeballs with data profound,
Their report was full of impacts: social, antisocial and compound.
And then, in a twinkling, MaRSians heard on the roof
The jumping and shouting of consultants, usually aloof.
“Who the hell put bees up here?!” exclaimed St. Zayna aloud,
As she desperately calmed her anxious staff crowd.
Her team tossed out reports to the atrium below,
Where MaRSians had now gathered, to challenge the status quo.
Armed with the proof found in this dissertation,
MaRSians were ready for their own Syntegration!
They gathered in clusters, broke apart, then took votes,
All the time driving sales of markers and coloured Post-it notes.
Their challenge, to create a MaRS plan for the ages,
Was made easy by help from true friends and wise sages.
Their task was assisted by a team of droll elves,
Who nudged, prodded, coached, just like MaRSians themselves.
And just as the MaRSians were feeling defeated,
They rallied and cried out “This job is completed.”
The key answer that emerged on that magic Christmas Eve
Was that MaRSians must themselves be entrepreneurs as they lead.
They measure, they learn, they adapt as they go,
And they never shy from tough problems that the world needs to know.
St. Zayna was amazed at this Christmas revelation,
And how MaRSians had leapt from her report, to such inspiration.
“It’s clear,” she allowed, “that your Christmas present is on track,
A strat plan that will surely set MaRS on the right tack.”
She sprang to her sleigh, to her team gave a whistle,
And away they all flew like the down of a thistle.
But I heard her exclaim, ’ere she drove out of sight,
“Happy Christmas to all, and to all a good-night!”
*with apologies to Clement Clarke Moore
Tony Redpath mentored entrepreneurs at MaRS, with a particular emphasis on environmental, advanced materials and manufacturing markets. His primary role was to ensure that MaRS has the right programs in place to help companies take their ideas to market and that these programs are working together. See more…