AJ Ross

Chief Technology Officer, Fluxon

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Why Choose A Startup Over A Corporate Job

Start-ups run lean, so every individual is carefully chosen for their ability to drive the company’s success and for their point of view on the business.

The startup scene is booming in India, bringing with it new innovation, ideas, and more jobs. But many tech workers are hesitant to take the leap from the safety of their corporate jobs to the perceived risk of joining a startup. A few years ago, I was a senior manager at Google, with a steady salary, great benefits and a stable outlook. But when the opportunity to lead the founding team of a fast-growing startup came along, I joined and never looked back. Here’s why.

 A team orientated around shared goals

There’s an exciting, intangible energy in startups that inspires people to do their best work, and fosters a deep sense of connection and a shared purpose. It’s this same spirit that drives innovation and growth — something special is on the horizon, and we are all part of it. At a startup, everyone is aware of the company's mission and is emotionally invested.

A culture of openness and transparency

At large companies, you often never see the CEO, and rarely, if ever, would send them an email. Problems are often more difficult to solve, as you navigate through layers of hierarchy and legacy decision-making. By contrast, many smaller companies favour an open and inclusive work culture in which every person’s opinions are valued and everyone is empowered to speak up. At startups, everyone knows how the company is doing, its goals, challenges, and what each person is working on. We’re all responsible for defining the culture, technology and problems to be solved – everything is novel and all assumptions can be questioned.

An opportunity to learn, fast

When it comes to agility, startups have the edge. Plus, you get to work with the best teams in the field. Start-ups run lean, so every individual is carefully chosen for their ability to drive the company’s success and for their point of view on the business. There is less hierarchy than at large organizations, and there might be many paths to advancement, creating leadership and growth opportunities for everyone. Startup teams are nimble, autonomous, creative, and continually learning—all of which are critical to fulfillment. 

Personal impact and entrepreneurial spirit

In bigger companies, problems you encounter can often seem like someone else’s responsibility. While your work might be important to your team, it might feel removed from the larger mission of the company. In a startup, everyone is crucial. You work directly on critical business problems, every day. You see feedback firsthand, often immediately, and get the satisfaction of solving customer problems directly. At a startup, everyone has to think like an owner, and continually ask themselves, “What can I personally do to make this place even more awesome?”

The hope of a high return

As with many things in life, the higher the risk, the higher the reward. Startups can offer life-changing financial potential and many of today’s high-growth startups and small companies offer comparable salary packages to larger enterprises. Additionally, the lifestyle perks once only offered by big tech companies are becoming so prevalent that they’re no longer a differentiator, they’re the norm. Many startups today offer free lunches, gym reimbursements and more. There’ll always be an inherent risk to going small, but one thing to remember is this: no matter if the company succeeds or fails, you are going to gain an invaluable amount of experience and connections that you can take with you to your next opportunity.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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