Launching a startup on your employer's dime

April 20, 2015 2:57 PM

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Jeremy Kratz was working as a freelance Web developer in Little Rock, Arkansas, when he joined a Chicago-based software consulting company called We Are Mammoth. But he wasn't hired to be just a rank-and-file employee; soon enough, he was helping to lead an entire business — a bug-tracking software company called DoneDone, founded by We Are Mammoth employees. Best of all: Neither he nor his colleagues had to put up the funds for this new venture. It was launched on their previous employer's dime.

Giving employees the freedom to pitch and pursue new ideas is certainly an old management concept. It even has its own awkward buzzword: intrapreneurship. But even when employees have come up with smart business ideas, they haven't necessarily shared in the profits they've generated. That is, until ...

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