Do any of the following six scenarios give rise to Conflict of Interest, for me and my company and/or for the other person and his company:
I read each of these scenarios and said "Fantastic -- what a great way to pull yourself up by your own relationships."
I am not a lawyer -- so this is not a legal dissertation on conflict-of-interest. this is based on years of experience of paying lawyers a lot of money. This is the distillation I have come out with:
Of course there are "conflicts-of-interest" in all of these. We are all complex people with overlapping interests -- financial, family, fortune. And often we have to make choices when these different interests come into conflict. We make a choice, we decide and the we DISCLOSE.
A "conflict-of-interest" doesn't necessarily mean -- "Don't do" --but it always means "Disclose " In each of the scenarios that you identified there will be a critical point that the individual who recommended, contracts or referral you that they will need to disclose their fiscal/contractual/family relationship to you. There may be cases where such a reccomendation, contract or referral will not be allowed by the other company in accordance with their own policies-- but don't let that predetermine the association with valuable talent that can help you grow your company.
Just be diligent in disclosure. If any of the individuals that you propose associating with want it or need it to be "secret" -- well, that probably isn't a good relationship to get into. (Just ask my friend who found out he secret boyfriend was married) A good way to accomplish this is to add these people to an adivsory board -- which is published on your website -- with their other associations listed (for association purpose only). The process of them agreeing, or getting permission as needed will faciliate the neccessary disclosure.
1 to 5 give rise to conflicts because the other person has worked or is working for someone else. 6 is problematic for a different reason: it's usually not a good idea to hire relatives.