I have job four creation ideas I’m socializing to get input on:

  1. Get local tech firms to hire people sooner by helping them grow faster
  2. Have more post-secondary students start companies while at school or shortly after graduating
  3. Make it easier for local tech firms to hire the technical talent they need to grow by keeping technical talent in the province
  4. Stop businesses owned by those over 65 from shutting down

Basic information on each idea is below.

I welcome the opportunity to expand on each idea over the phone.

1) Helping Technology Companies Grow Faster

Most technology startups and scaleups struggle due to a lack of sales.

This can easily be improved by implementing an internship program for what are called Lead Development Reps (LDR) and having https://ventureforcanada.ca/ pay 75% of their income.

These positions are designed to find leads for the founder(s) to follow up on. Using simple and inexpensive tools like Google voice, https://www.oberlo.com/blog/email-tracker, Zoom, and a basic CRM platform.

This idea is designed for those startup companies who have not found product / market fit yet but can easily be applied to scale up companies who have it.

This idea could include initial training and regular peer mentoring sessions for those in the LDR roles as well as training for those founders who would become first-time sales leaders.

If these LDRs prove to be successful they can be promoted to Sales Development Reps (SDR) – would now move a sales opportunity further along before involving the founder –  and a new LDR will be put below them.

If the SDR and the LDR prove to be successful the SDR will be promoted to Business Development Rep (BDR) – to develop opportunities even further before involving the founder – the LDR would be promoted to SDR and another new LDR will be hired.

The basic assumption is that with additional revenues startups are more likely to hire more people and attract investment.

I’m currently looking for ways to create a pilot for this program.

2) Get Students to Start Companies Sooner

The data strongly suggests that the #1 reason students and recent graduates of post-secondary institutions don’t start a company is student debt.

This could be overcome by offering a temporary student loan abatement program for those who start a company within 6-months of graduating.

This idea started with a coffee meeting with the founder and CEO of Venture For Canada  https://www.linkedin.com/in/scottstirrett/ before the Friday sessions of the very first INVENTURE$ conference and has since had the potential economic impact researched – https://150startups.com/research.

This initiative was shared last year at both a provincial level (https://www.linkedin.com/in/andy-weiler-15ba0b6a/, https://www.linkedin.com/in/maggie-deslauriers-30580526/ and Dan Rizolli) and federal level (https://www.linkedin.com/in/alexis-conrad-9ab15a7/ and https://www.linkedin.com/in/atiq-rahman-95004022/) and given the province’s job creation objectives and the Prime Ministers’ recent announcement of 1,000,000 jobs it might have additional legs.

https://osap.gov.on.ca/OSAPPortal/en/A-ZListofAid/PRDR017887.html earlier this year.

3) Keep Technical Talent in the Province

There is a perspective that local technology firms can’t grow because the technical talent being developed by Alberta’s universities, colleges and polytechnics leave rather than stay in Alberta.

By offering a similar student loan abatement program to recently graduated technical talent that stays in Alberta and goes to work for those participating in #2 above we can retain more of that local talent and help more startups get off the ground.

4) Over 65 Small Business Succession

Data suggests that 30% of businesses owned by those over 65 will be shut down in the next 5 years because no one in the family wants to take them over.

Here the idea is to have recent graduates take over businesses that might otherwise get shut down, have the new student owners mentored by the previous owner and encourage the new owners to apply innovation to them so they can grow and hire more people.

This idea could take advantage of the funding currently available via the https://www.canada.ca/en/employment-social-development/programs/social-innovation-social-finance/investment-readiness.html.

By converting the businesses to Co-ops we could address the three of the biggest issues with students taking over these businesses:

  • Students getting frustrated and leaving before the business is transitioned
  • Business owners getting frustrated and stopping the process before the business is transitioned
  • Employees leaving during or shortly after the business is transitioned.

I welcome any and all questions, suggestions, or concerns with the ideas above.

Thanks and have a GREAT day!

Craig Elias
m: +1.403.874.2998