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I'm a sucker for "makeover" television.

I love watching Kitchen Nightmares, when Gordon Ramsay takes a failing restaurant and turns it around. I'm occasionally caught checking out American Idol or Extreme Makeover: Home Edition, which chronicles the transformation of a house of a downtrodden family into something spectacular.

So when I sat down recently with the editor of Report on Small Business to brainstorm a new direction for my column, we quickly landed on the idea of working with one company to try to help it grow into a more valuable business, based on my experience starting and exiting four companies.

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The most immediate challenge is to identify a business for me to work with. If you know one that meets the following criteria, please send an e-mail to yourbusiness@globeandmail.com:

  • The company is incorporated, with three to 30 full-time employees.
  • The company is growth-oriented.
  • The company is headquartered in Canada.
  • The company operates from a commercial setting (not home-based).
  • The owners are "coachable" and willing to listen.
  • The owners agree to share with Report on Small Business readers, candidly and openly, the ups and downs of running a company.
  • The owners will commit to a standing, 30-minute coaching call with me every Friday morning, for at least eight consecutive weeks.

Once we identify a candidate, I'll write about the challenges faced by its owners, and the advice I give them. I hope it will be a starting point for readers to weigh in using the comments field to provide their own suggestions for the chosen candidate. That way, the company will benefit from the collective wisdom of thousands of smart business owners and employees.

I'm looking forward to taking the journey with you and the selected company. If you are interested in participating, or if you have questions, please email the following information:

  • Your name
  • The company's name, mailing address and phone number
  • The company's website
  • Approximate fiscal 2010 revenue
  • Why you think the company should be selected (please limit to 200 words)

The deadline to apply is July 31. Applicants will be contacted shortly thereafter.

Special to The Globe and Mail

John Warrillow is a writer, speaker and angel investor in a number of start-up companies. He is the author of Built To Sell: Creating a Business That Can Thrive Without You, published by Portfolio Penguin.

Join The Globe's Small Business LinkedIn group to network with other entrepreneurs and to discuss topical issues: http://linkd.in/jWWdzT

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Welcome to The Globe and Mail’s comment community. This is a space where subscribers can engage with each other and Globe staff. Non-subscribers can read and sort comments but will not be able to engage with them in any way. Click here to subscribe.

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