Calkins Law Firm & OnShift – The Story of a Cleveland Startup

Here at Calkins Law Firm we well remember the day when Gene approached us, asking for help with his exciting idea for a new cloud-based software solution. He was hoping to tackle a niche need - managing workforce challenges in healthcare. In specific, he wanted to help senior care facilities to find the best workers to address the needs of their residents.

While Gene had a revolutionary idea that would fix a real-life need - the basis of any successful startup - he lacked a few other necessary steps in the process. His thorough research and knowledge of the technologies at play were a plus, but he was still looking for a few vital pieces of the equation: a business model, startup and growth capital, and leadership.

So we brought in our good friend Ron, a local serial entrepreneur, and collectively we developed a business model. Meanwhile, Gene set up a beta test at a local nursing home. We then called on David and Charlie and they contributed early stage capital on a convertible note basis. Their associate, Mark, became the acting CEO of this new startup company called OnShift based here in Cleveland, Ohio.

Once these prerequisite pieces were in place, we were finally able to bring JumpStart, North Coast Angel Fund, Early Stage Partners, and other growth investors into the mix. Collectively they were able to supply the needed early stage and growth capital for OnShift to fully develop.

Helping Cleveland Businesses Succeed

We're thrilled to have been a part of this local success story. Now that OnShift has had a rumored and unconfirmed past liquidity event it's time to look back and glean a lesson or two. Gene's situation really highlights that without a business model, early stage capital, essential leadership, and growth capital, a startup will almost certainly not see the growth they're hoping for.

Another lesson: partner with a professional, and look for a pro with connections. Because of our business focus, the team at Calkins Law Firm was able to step up and pull in resources from across the business spectrum to help Gene's idea take shape. We love a happy ending and a hard-earned celebration, and we take such satisfaction in being able to help local entrepreneurs  realize their goals.

If you're working on a great idea but are lacking the funding and leadership you need to make it come to life, reach out to us. We'll see if we can't get the proverbial ball rolling and aim it in the right direction. 

To Gene and all those involved in OnShift's success, it was our absolute pleasure to work with you. Salute! Encore!

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Benjamin Calkins

Benjamin Calkins

Ben Calkins is a well-educated, top-rated, and highly experienced business law attorney.

Ben Calkins is an honors graduate of Harvard College and the University of Michigan Law School. After law school, he clerked for a Federal Judge before joining one of the World’s largest law firms, Squire, Sanders & Dempsey. Mr. Calkins has also worked at, and been a partner in, several of the most prominent “old style law firms” in the World.