Choosing a career can be tricky. Especially when joining and working for a startup. It can be an exciting journey that requires application of so many talents and skills to achieve set performance indicators. It can be a great eye-opener for the youth and beginners who still have a long career journey ahead and fewer responsibilities. However, it should be a journey that you make informed decisions about and one that you tread cautiously on. It can also be a career choice for some, especially where one has a strong passion for the startup’s values, vision and products as well as entrepreneurs.This article is meant to prepare you are interested in choosing a career with start ups to ensure you make informed career decisions.
Moststartups operate on a limited budget and minimal resources. As a result of this, they usually cannot afford to employ too many people, meaning,you need to be ready to put in a lot of work. Whereas you would work 8 hours a day in an established company, startup employees often have to work extra hours, sometimes 14 – 16 hour days.
Your workload is never done at a startup and you need to go the extra mile just to keep things floating. Even if you go into it prepared, there is a chance you end up being overworked and suffer from burn out. The positive side of this is that you are likely to learn a lot of skills at the same time and gain invaluable experience in a short time. This is valuable experience that can rocket your career to the next level.
As we mentioned earlier, due to limited resources and limited budgets, more often than not, the remuneration is usually at a low scalecomparing to established organizations. Being the case, initial employees should expect low salaries that gradually build up as the startup becomes profitable. So, if you are not getting compensated in some other way, either through bonuses or entitlements, you might want to choose a more established company to sustain your lifestyle. On the flipside, when the set strategies work and the return on investment goes up, the compensation is likely to go up as well. This requires lots of patience.
While conventional companies have set policies and procedures in place to guide processes, startups create these policies on the go. With limited resources and deadlines to beat, unexpected expenses can upset normal processes in a startup and result in confusion and panic. Some of the individuals in charge of projects may lack in business-related experience as they are usually first time entrants with new inventions and innovations. This may require you to be ready for constant change in strategies, work environment, and workload. Flexibility and resilience is key in such situations.
Unconventional Management Models
Your idea of a manager may be crashed when you join a startup. Most startups usually have rather casual management styles. They focus on productivity and excellence in innovations rather than your usual 8-5 hour day jobs which have strict codes on matters like reporting time, dressing etc. You must be disciplined to perform under such an environment, especially when switching from a traditional company.
There is no guarantee at all that all startups will succeed, irrespective of all the bright innovations behind their launching. In fact, according to the latest numbers, even in a country like the United States, 9 out of 10 startups fail within the first year or even the first few months. The reasons are simply too numerous to exhaust. This means you should be ready for any eventuality. It also points to the importance of conducting extensive research of a particular company and the industry at large before joining.