Category: hiring


Flow Is Growing – Now Hiring: Administrative Assistant

Flow Ventures is a boutique consulting firm with unparalleled experience advising companies throughout the business lifecycle. Our team is composed of experienced, successful entrepreneurs and technical specialists. Combined, Flow aids our clients in growing their companies by helping them claim their SRED and other tax credits, raising financing, and planning strategic growth or exit.

Flow works with some of Canada’s most exciting companies and has a long history of being the go-to resource for funding.

We are seeking an experienced Admin Assistant to join our expanding consulting group in Toronto. We offer a fast-paced, dynamic and entrepreneurial work environment with opportunities for training, career growth and advancement.

The successful candidate will be expected to provide administrative and financial support for all aspects of the organization.


  • Bookkeeping, generating contracts, mail and general office support.
  • Client billing, ordering supplies, obtaining Government Business Consent from Clients.
  • Processing all employee expenses efficiently and within company timelines
  • Liaising directly with employees to resolve discrepancies
  • Processing payroll
  • Maintaining marketing material (e.g. databases, CRM and email lists)

Job Requirements:
To be considered for this Administrative role, you must have a 1+ years of experience in an Administrative Assistant or Bookkeeping capacity, although recent graduates from a administrative or financial/accounting program are encouraged to apply.

  • Polite and professional business attitude
  • High energy, positive attitude and approachable
  • Close attention to detail and accuracy
  • Time management skills
  • Self starter, works independently, flexible and hard-working
  • Ambitious, takes initiative
  • Ability to organize, multi-task and prioritize workload
  • Good command of the English language (both written & verbal)
  • Bilingual – French an asset
  • Proficiency in Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word required
  • Knowledge of Xero Accounting, workflow management and CRM tools an asset.
  • Proficiency with web publishing tools such as WordPress is an asset.

To apply, please send your resume to:


Bryan Watson Joins Flow Ventures as Partner

TORONTO, ON – August 10, 2015 – The Partners of Flow Ventures are pleased to announce that Bryan J. Watson has joined Flow Ventures as the newest Partner of the firm, spearheading the growth of the firm, particularly in Ontario
For over a decade Bryan has advised and supported Angel and venture capital investors, all levels of government, NGOs, and companies at all stages of growth – from idea to exit. In addition, Bryan is active on numerous funding review panels for Provincially and Federally funded organizations.

In the past, Bryan has served as Executive Director of the National Angel Capital Organization, Founder and President of the Network of Angel Organizations-Ontario, and CEO Fusion as well as President of EP Enterprises Inc.. In addition to these roles, Bryan has been a Director of Precarn Incorporated and the Canadian Advanced Technology Alliance, and well as an Advisor to the Mississauga R.I.C. Center and hundreds of startups. Bryan continues to be actively engaged in advising a number of organizations.

Bryan completed his Masters in Management, Economics and International Relations at the University of St. Andrews, Scotland, on the only full Chevening Scholarship awarded in Canada.

On Bryan’s partnership, Founder of Flow Ventues, Raymond Luk, commented, “Bryan is an institution within the growth company, financing and innovation management communities. His recent selection as one of 7 finalists, representing Ontario, from across Canada for the 2015 BDC Mentorship Award demonstrates this. We are excited to have him on board!”

“Having worked with Flow Ventures on many different projects,” commented Bryan, “I am pleased to join the Flow Ventures family and look forward to continuing to support my current clients as well as new ones. The holistic, approach that Flow takes to helping clients grow is very much in line with my philosophy for supporting growth companies and companies seeking to better manage their innovation portfolio and activities.”

Bryan will spearhead the expansion of Flow Ventures in Ontario while also advising companies across Canada and internationally. To connect with Bryan Watson, please do so at

About Flow Ventures:
Flow Ventures is a boutique consulting firm with unparalleled experience advising companies throughout the business lifecycle. Whether your company is securing grants and tax credits, raising financing, or planning strategy growth or exit, the Flow Ventures team is at your disposal. Flow Ventures was founded and is operated by serial entrepreneurs, investors, and company operators, and working with us means working with people with the experience and vast international network you need to achieve your goals. For more information, please visit:


Hiring for Lean Startups: The First Few Hires


I was having coffee with a founder the other day and we started talking about his hiring plans. Since he’s a non-technical founder (which Ben Yoskovitz claims is a dead-end to begin with) he had several top coders in mind, all of whom were earning big bucks with larger companies.

“I’m paying them a little bit of money but they’ll join full time once I can raise money,” said the founder. It’s something I hear a lot, especially from non-techie founders.

I went back to review some blog posts on Lean hiring, and I came across Eric’s post “Lean Hiring Tips

” and Mark MacLeod’s “Fat Hiring for Lean Startups“. Both are worth your time. But I think they’re also written for startups that are already up and running and need to expand. I’m interested in very early stage hiring, e.g. when you’re one person looking for a co-founder or you’re two people looking for your core team.

Companies always take on the characteristics of their founders and in the rush to scale, I find many startups don’t stop to consider how they’re establishing the DNA of their company. The first few hires are the most important ones you’ll make.

  • Hire for an experimental mindset – Look for people who enjoy encountering problems, designing ways to solve them, and finding proof of success or failure. Skill at building, whether it’s software or a marketing plan or a sales funnel, is irrelevant at this point. You need people who will volunteer to scrap their plans, not fight you when you want to change course.

How? Join a hackathon, Lean Machine or just create your own (laptop + Starbucks = hackathon). Give your (potential) team a crazy challenge and see who exhibits the right behaviours.

  • Hire generalists – A lot of people will disagree with this advice. If you can find the best Python developer in the country go for it. But only if she’s also willing to cold call customers, crank out some Web site copy and help you whiteboard the business model. Your #1 focus is to find a business model that works. The latent technical talent on your bench won’t help you unless you graduate from this first phase

How? Again, hackathons are great practical tests. No matter what their skillset, look for passion about your business model and solving customer problems.

  • Prioritize UX over development – This is easier said than done since there’s a shortage of UX talent. But it’s better to have a kick-ass UX person and a mediocre developer than the other way around. UX will help you find your business model and most (good) UX people already have an experimental mindset and generalist attitude

How? Actively seek out UX people, not just developers. You may need to work at a distance if you can’t find local talent. Consider working with less experienced people if they can prove themselves through testing.

  • Get skin in the game – Leaving a six figure job to join your startup for a paycut is not skin in the game, or not enough in my books. Hire those people later when you’ve found your business model, have money in the bank, and need to scale. Skin in the game means working full time, just like you are. It means putting their reputation on the line, raising Ramen funding from friends/family/spouses and saying “I’m going to see this through until we fail.”

How? Stop feeling like you’re a poor startup that can’t afford to pay top salaries. Those aren’t the droids you’re looking for. Think of finding your co-founders like raising your first round. You need to get them excited to invest in your business.

I know this advice seems to apply better to “Web” startups than general technology startups, which is a common criticism of Lean startups in general. But I think it applies more broadly. If you hire for the right attitude, you not only solve the critical product-market fit problem, but you set the DNA of your business right from the start. I guess I haven’t seen too many examples of startups failing because they lacked a specific technical skill. They probably think they failed because of it though.

In the end, I guess “hiring” is the wrong word to begin with. You’re looking for people to co-found a business with you. You aren’t buying their skills, you’re asking them to invest in helping you shape the course of your business from the very beginning. Maybe not all of them (including yourself) will be able to scale up with the business. That’s a problem for another day.