10 August 2016 12:08:50 IST

Kick-start your career in a start-up

The traditional style of working and decision-making don’t apply at most start-ups

A career at a start-up tends to catch the fancy of many these days. But, most often, freshers out of the fetters of academic engines are confused, undecided whether to take up a job at a well-established enterprise or with a start-up. Job security at the former versus the novel experience of the latter can be a dilemma.

If you are bewitched by the life of working with a start-up and wish to start a career there, make sure you talk to peers, read up on experiences by fellow millennials and do your homework before getting allured by this hypnotic force.

Unlearn it all!

The traditional style of working and decision-making don’t apply at most start-ups. They operate differently. And each start-up operates differently from the other. So, undo those preconceived notions, textbook approaches and rigid ideologies, and let instinct and creativity take their place. This dynamism is what gives start-ups their distinct flavour and keeps the innovative spirit alive. As a newbie, you may be apprehensive to go against the tide or speak your mind at the work place, but do it nevertheless. In a start-up, experience is respected, but courage is revered.

Don’t be floored by the aura and style

The media may showcase a chic and casual lifestyle of people working in a start-up, but there’s more to it. While the workload tends to be the same or sometimes, more than corporate offices, start-ups are less rigid about protocols and offer flexibility in time, space and work pattern. The high level of flexibility, policy of open communication and encouragement of creative approach at work is what hooks the free-spirited millennial. It’s precisely why most of them are prepared to work in small spaces minus the fancy canteens and foosball tables. After all, some of the best brands we know today started in garages and apartments.

Keep the focus on inspiration, not incentives

Start-ups can’t match the CTC and packages of corporates. But as a fresher, you want to prioritise learning and self-development. The experience and exposure will more than compensate in due course of time. When you weigh the pros and cons on a career chart, what you get ultimately at a start-up is a better package. Interestingly, never before has it been easier for youngsters to achieve immediate recognition and instant gratification for their hard work. Good performance often cuts across the hierarchical growth ladder that ultimately leads to financial progress as well.

Be passionate about the product

What drives a team in a start-up is passion and belief. Most often, resources are limited, time is critical and the odds are almost always against you. Hence, founders and managements hire only those individuals who can contribute immensely to the cause and work with equal passion. On an individual level, this fervour is what will help overcome the pressures of a demanding job and the sacrifices of a ‘normal corporate’ life.

Get attracted to minds

Start-up companies are hubs of great talent and interesting minds. Just being in the presence of such people can be more enriching than an academic degree. Working in start-ups helps greenhorn professionals learn leadership skills, convert ideas into actions, and develop an entrepreneurial spirit. Needless to say, these are life-skills served on a platter.

Develop the personal you

With demanding hours and an unconventional work lifestyle, what you take away from the experience can make a profound impact on your personal life. One learns to be more responsible, frugal and solution-oriented. The innovative streak also develops a thinking mind with an affinity for pet projects. Only a start-up can offer this seamless blend of personal and professional development.

Millennials looking to kick-start an unconventional career path have ample opportunities with start-ups mushrooming across the country. These companies don’t always adhere to tried and tested methods. But that’s the charm of a start-up. They are high-risk, high-return initiatives and that’s what sustains the adrenaline rush for all those working in one. As a newcomer on the scene, keep in mind the above factors and you will sail smoothly through rough waters on the start-up ship!