Startups were criticized a decade ago. But nowadays, it is seen as a respectable profession for many. The young graduates are keen to become more familiar with it and often talk about it. When I hear someone talk about a startup, two things pop up into my mind, innovation, and growth. But let us first discuss what a startup is.
What is a startup?
A startup usually refers to a company, a partnership or organization that one designs to develop into a business. It is typically technology-oriented and has high growth potential.
These companies offer products or services that are not currently available in the market, or that the founders believe is being offered in an inferior manner. A startup explores an unknown or innovative business model. It disrupts the existing markets, as in the case of Google, Amazon or Uber. Startup companies can come in all forms and sizes. It is built on the idea of innovating existing ideas to solve economic, domestic, industrial and medical problems.
“Build the new, don’t just fight the old”. Hence, a startup is a company one designs to scale very quickly. It is this focus on growth unconstrained by geography which differentiates start-ups from small businesses. Investors are generally most attracted to those new companies distinguished by their strong co-founding team, risk/reward profile, and scalability. Since a startup is a young company that is just beginning to develop, it is still in its first stage of operations.
Difference between a corporate job and a startup job
1. Focused on one task
People at a corporate position are generally stuck with their main task. They don’t get to branch out into other areas. Whether it’s writing, designing, filling out spreadsheets, or any other task, it’s usually a one-person-fits-one-task kind of position.
At a corporate job, you are expected to work only at your station place. Therefore, it is often a trend at such companies that people from accounting do not know anyone from the HR or marketing section. Hence, there is no social interaction among employees.
3. Higher Recognition
People believe that a corporate job in a high profile company looks more attractive on your resume. Thus, even if a startup offers higher pay, people tend to be more inclined towards the corporation due to its higher social recognition.
4. Less work freedom
In large MNCs, every task must be carried out in a particular format and there are rules surrounding everything. So the freedom of work is less.
1. Improved Social and Communication Skills
In a startup, as you need to interact with everyone who is a part of the team. A wider approach for a solution to a problem is possible as every individual in the company thinks, comprehends and reacts differently. Hence, your social and communication skills enhance.
2. Enhanced Skill Set
Since you become a part of a small team, nobody in the company may possess the same set of skill sets as you. Thus, you may not be the most important part of the team. But you become an integral member of it. It brings you confidence in your skillset. Thus, it makes you better at your work.
3. Work Motivation
There is a team that works hand in hand to conquer the world together. You are surrounded by people who are as determined and enthusiastic to work for the task in hand. In such an environment, you feel motivated about your work.
4. Work Freedom
Every member is important and holds a dignified position in a startup. Your skills and work are respected. At the same time, you can venture out into new tasks and improve your potential. Thus, you get the freedom to work.
Why you should work for a startup?
“Great work is performed not by strength but by perseverance”. Joining a startup is usually a pretty big risk and a lot of work. For it to be meaningful, you need to make sure that in addition to bringing a lot to the startup, it needs to bring a lot to you. There are certain things which a job at a startup offers:
1. While working for a startup, failure is easier to notice, you’ll make sure to eliminate mistakes. This helps to avoid disappointing your colleagues. Stay focused, and your successes will be recognized and your failures minimized. This ensures that once you work in a startup, your skillset enhances.
2. You will get a diverse set of experiences and visibility nowhere else that you can get in an early-stage startup.
3. A startup provides you growth opportunities for yourself rather than the company itself. If you are willing to explore yourself and take risks, a startup is exactly what you need. It will help you to acquire a great skill set and knowledge.
After college, everyone faces the same dilemma, whether to join a startup or a well-established company with a better pay scale and cushy benefits. A young mind often leans towards the benefits offered by a corporate job over a job in a startup. This is bound to happen. But we need to ask whether the name of the company matters or the experience which comes from working in it. At a startup, an individual is not constrained by their work.
For a recent graduate, fresh out of college, there will be a huge shift in knowledge and working style in the process of adhering to the industry standards which is invaluable. Also, many times you have to wear multiple hats, as the responsibilities are not clearly defined.
One may have to fill in for others when they are gone. And perform duties that are not even close to your normal responsibilities. Even the tiniest ideas are heard and are genuinely discussed if they can be adopted.
You can work on a product from its inception until the release which gives you a sense of ownership. The exhilaration of being part of a successful startup produces pride and a sense of accomplishment that is extraordinary. You will never regret the long hours, hard work and a smaller paycheck.
Working at a startup is a more challenging job. Not only one appreciates you for your work but it also highlights your limitations and failures. So What are you waiting for? Just grab the first opportunity you get and join it now.