Laid off workers Finding Business Opportunities in Calgary Though Startups.
The tough economic environment has led laid off workers in Calgary to turn to entrepreneurship, something they would have considered risky when they were earning full time salaries.
Being a start up entrepreneur when the gloom surrounds other business could be a gamble, but it is an opportunity that many workers are willing to grab even as they deal with the stress of losing their previous jobs.
“We see a lot more interest in the entrepreneurial journey,” said Kari Gordon, executive director of Startup Calgary, a not-for-profit organisation that connects new entrepreneurs with people who can help take their ideas and transform them to reality.
Company employees, who had long dreamt of opening their own business or had previously worked on projects only as part time options, now see their skills being used for a full time work opportunity with independence, Gordon said.
The number of self-employed people in Alberta rose by 16,700 in December 2015 from November the same year, according to Statistics Canada. However not everyone has an easy transition from employee to Start-up founder, as people moving from being an employee to taking full responsibility for the various facets of the business will have to deal with various new issues they are not accustomed to.
“Entrepreneurs are vulnerable, especially in the early stages, but even more so when you’re dealing with people who are moving into the entrepreneurial space, having just come from a very traumatic time,” Gordon added.
Beginning a new venture to confront unemployment is one of the best ways to move forward in such an uncertain economic weather and many people have realised the potential such startups hold once the jobs situation gets better across the country.
There are some advantages to the new Calgary businesses as well, many talented and skilled individuals are unemployed at the moment and are likely to join startups. This kind of talent pool would have been inaccessible otherwise.