A Lyft with Rob Woodbridge: Ride-hailing service equips and celebrates drivers as entrepreneurs

In the first instalment of this new video series, A Lyft with Rob Woodbridge, the champion for small business owners shares how leading the ride-hailing company’s Ottawa operations gives him the opportunity to inspire, equip and mobilize drivers as entrepreneurs. 

“You get to assist people in becoming entrepreneurs,” says Woodbridge, Lyft’s Ottawa general manager. “This is an opportunity to leverage a platform like Lyft to be able to start your own business.” 

Interested drivers must complete the application process consisting of a police check, a driving record check and (per city requirements) a vulnerable sector check. Drivers are on the road once these measures are satisfied in-person with support from staff and a network of fellow drivers at the Lyft Ottawa hub at 2222 Carling Ave.

“All of a sudden you are operating your own business and it’s pretty exciting,” Woodbridge says. “The infrastructure is there for you to be able to turn on the app and become an entrepreneur overnight.”

Drivers structure their own flexible work hours and are accountable for building their own business identity and reputation through passenger ratings visible to all platform users. 

“It’s no secret that the economy is driven by small businesses and entrepreneurship is as important to the city as infrastructure,” Woodbridge says. “This job enables me to enable others to search for their dreams, to be able to build something out of their own effort. It’s probably the most rewarding thing that I get to see.” 

Learn more about how Lyft is changing the way Ottawa residents move around the city here.