Vancouver Startup 2017 Recap: Erin and Heidi Engage with Entrepreneurs

By Wendy Woloshyn.

Last month, and for the fourth year in a row, Erin Brandt was fortunate enough to connect with local business owners during Vancouver’s biggest celebration of entrepreneurship, Vancouver Startup Week.

This year Erin and co-presenter Heidi Eaves, Principal at Project House, spoke to a packed room at The Profile filled primarily with representatives from new companies thinking about growth and hiring. In a thoughtful and at times provocative discussion, the group covered the basics and then some, including:

  • Employees vs. independent contractors
  • Employment contract best practices
  • Hiring and firing
  • Workplace policies to protect your employees and your business
  • Keeping your team happy and motivated
  • WorkSafeBC – health, safety and insurance

If this Gastown gathering was any indication of the employment concerns facing Vancouver’s startup community as a whole (and we suspect it was), worker classification, employee motivation and engagement, and dismissal continue to be “hot button issues” for those growing their businesses. Here’s just a sampling of the questions that are top-of-mind for this key sector of Vancouver’s marketplace:

  1. How do I respond to an employee who wants to know why they are being let go?
  2. Do I owe a person severance if they are dismissed while on probation?
  3. Can I restrict an independent contractor from working for our competitors?
  4. How can I protect our confidential information and intellectual property if our independent contractors are also working for our competitors?
  5. What can’t I ask a prospective new hire during a job interview?
  6. If I own the business, am I required to to pay WCB premiums for myself?

If you’re curious about the answers or have questions of your own, you don’t need to wait until VSW2018 to be enlightened (although we hope to see you there!).

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