Building the Team: Hiring and Compensating Employees

WPI's Nov. 16 Venture Forum Features Business Expert P. Thomas Vogel

Contact: Arlie Corday, WPI Media & Community Relations

WORCESTER, Mass. - How does an entrepreneur quickly build a company - and a team of employees - to be able to strike when the market is hot?

P. Thomas Vogel aims to answer that question at the Nov. 16 Venture Forum lecture at Worcester Polytechnic Institute. His presentation, "Building the Team: Hiring and Compensating Employees," will help companies reach their commercial potential and make business owners' dreams a reality.

The forum will take place in WPI's Salisbury Laboratories' Kinnicutt Lecture Hall at 6:30 p.m. Registration starts at 6; admission is $5 for Venture Forum members, $10 for non-members and free for those with a WPI I.D. card.

Vogel will examine the problem of a company that foresees a short-term opportunity yet has a long-term schedule for completion.

"Examination of the possible solutions suggests that the only reasonable thing to do is to expand the work force," Vogel said. "How do you go about doing this? Do you add your wife, your son, a friend or a neighbor to the team? Do you run an advertisement in the newspaper or on the Internet? Do you contact an employment agency or a recruiter? Do you get staff through a temporary employment agency or hire part-time staff through a local university? While any or all of these solutions are possible, what are the long-term consequences for your company and its progress, based upon your choices?"

Vogel emphasizes the importance of building a strong employee base, noting that "a balanced, cooperative team can help speed a product to market." But how can one build that kind of team?

The country is in the midst of a period of low unemployment, especially among trained professionals. If college seniors entering such fields as electronic commerce, software and biotechnology are rumored to receive hefty signing bonuses and high salaries, how does an employer know where to set compensation?

Vogel, an investor and director of Mosaic Technologies Inc., a Boston-based biotechnology company founded in 1994, has been instrumental in building his company's team. Throughout his career, he has overseen the superior financial performance of a number of corporate and entrepreneurial organizations. Among his skills are the creation and execution of successful strategic business plans.

With an M.B.A. degree from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania and an electrical engineering degree from the Georgia Institute of Technology, he has worked at some of the top companies in their respective industries including Texas Instruments, Abbott Laboratories Diagnostics, Fisher Scientific and Instrumentation Labs.

In addition to Vogel's talk, Venture Forum will include a case presentation of a business plan by Joseph Straight, founder and chief executive officer of Verax Biomedical Co. of North Reading, Mass. Verax is developing a medical device to detect bacterial contamination of platelets immediately prior to their use and is currently seeking financing. The panel members looking at the plan include Marc Goldberg of BioVentures Investments, LLC; Brian Kim of NaviMedix; and Natalie Rudolph, Ph.D., of Rudolph Consulting.

For more information about Venture Forum, contact Sarah Ribeiro at WPI at 508-831-5075 or visit www.wpiventureforum.org.