In the corporate rat race of becoming successful, working for a startup might not be on everyone’s agenda. After all, working for a startup isn’t without its fair share of hiccups. As it’s not an established company, its success is not guaranteed.
For every Zomato and Flipkart, there are thousands of others who fizzle out before making any impact.
Even the industry ranking platforms gives advises, So there are a few things that you should definitely keep in mind. As such, if you yourself are planning to take up a job offer from a startup,
Think of these as important questions you should be asking the founders of the startup, as well as yourself, before going to work for a startup–
Do the founders have sufficient experience?
Before anything else, it’s absolutely essential for you to know whether or not the founders of the startup you may be working for have got sufficient experience in building startups.
If the founders come with a decent amount of prior work experience, it means that there’s a lesser chance of their startup failing.
In fact, the numbers go down from 85% to just 25% if the founders have already build and sold a startup before. So, needless to say, prior experience is a big advantage.
Are you adaptable?
If you aren’t prone to adapting to changing situations, work hours and team structures, then it’d probably be best for you to stay away from a startup.
Unlike corporate jobs, working for a startup requires one to be extremely flexible and adaptable vis-a-vis assignments, reporting hierarchies and even office locations.
So if you’re okay with all the changes and chaos that comes hand in hand with working for a startup, you’d be a good fit for this culture.
Does the startup have sufficient funding?
Until and unless you look forward to delayed salaries, unnecessary arrears and miniscule salary hikes, then it’d be best to ask from the get go whether or not the startup you’re planning on working for has sufficient funding backing it up.
Ideally, a startup should have enough funding to last a whole year as anything less means they are already out of business. Even if a startup has got funding for a year, it needs to have additional plans in place for running the business after the year is over.
Are you okay with the team size?
Startups tend to have smaller teams and lesser number of employees on their payroll than their corporate counterparts. As such, you need to ask yourself whether or not you are okay working for an organization that could potentially have only five, six or seven employees.
While having that few employees might not seem encouraging at first, it’d actually make it easier for you to climb up the ladder as there would be lesser competition.
Also Read: Top 6 Ways to Survive in a Job You Hate
Are you seeing any red flags?
Before working for any startup, you really need to ask following question to yourself if you’re seeing any red flags or not. Believe it or not, but your gut feeling is usually pretty bang on in such cases.
Find out whether or not you’re replacing someone. Was there any specific reason for that person to leave? Was he/she unhappy with the job? Is there a noticeable negative atmosphere in the office? Does the founder’s personality raise any questions?
It’s important to keep a look out for any such red flags and, if you can see more than one, stay away from the job.
Is there any scope for growth?
While there is endless potential for growth in established and well known companies, the same might not be true for all startups.
Before taking up the job, you should make it a point of asking about potential growth opportunities, the scope of growth these opportunities would offer and if there are any unforeseen barriers you might face in your potential growth.
However the good news is that, since most startups have smaller teams, the potential for growth is usually high.
Will you learn something new?
Another thing that you should be sure of before joining any startup is if you’d be learning something new or not. Since you won’t be staying with this job for your whole life, it’s important to make sure that you’d be learning new things that could help you later on in your career.
After all, what’s the point of taking up a job that doesn’t improve upon your skill set? As an improved skill set will always lead to better job opportunities, taking up a job that will enhance your skills is essential.
Stability and harmony among co-founders/partners
If there isn’t any harmony and stability amongst the co-founders or partners themselves, how can you expect them to run their startup in a stable manner?
On a similar note, seeing how the founders treat their employees, the type of relationship they share with them and what the existing employees think of the founders is also relevant.
If you see a negative opinion being shared by the current employees, it’s perhaps best to stay away from that job offer.
Do you believe in the startup’s vision?
Startups are founded on the basis of some innovative idea, usually in the form of a product or service that would, in the opinions of the founders, make waves in the existing market space.
As such, it’s important for you to be sold by the startup’s idea and vision as well. No matter what department you’re working for, you won’t be giving your best if you yourself don’t believe in their vision.
Alternatively, your performance is bound to improve if you believe in the startup’s vision as you’d be working more diligently to make sure it becomes a reality.
Do the founders have any back up plans?
As around 85% of all startups end up failing, it’s essential to make sure that the founders of the startup you are planning on joining have some backup plans in place.
As success of any startup is not a guarantee, and joining a startup that closes down in the future is not an option, you should make it a point of asking the founders if they have any back up plans in place before coming on board.
What do you think about this Article? Please share your experiences in the comment below!