Start-up vs Large Corporate – 5 Factors to Consider Before Leaving a Large Organisation for a Start-up

Do you wish to work in a startup ? Are you secretly hating your current job but not ditching it because it pays you well ?  Do you want to continue with the multi-national that pays you more than you can spend, plus the other benefits they fold into packages to woo you, or to take a dive and join or start a start-up you’ve been dreaming of since forever. We understand that it is not an easy decision to make, so we have put together this post about the five factors we think you must consider before you take the Start-up vs Large Corporate job decision.

1. Money

You may not make as much money as you did when you start out. Worst case, you may not make any money at all in the beginning if you are one of the founders or core investors. In that case you will have to wait and watch your start-up take off before you can start reaping what you have harvested. Working in a start-up also means you may not be entitled to any additional benefits before your company starts making some profit, which may take a while.

2. Responsibilities –

Your responsibilities are not going to be linear anymore, they are going to be diverse. You may have a specific profile, however, in a start-up, on various occasions, you would be required to multitask. In a typical situation with limited funding, the resources are scarce and the to-do list is huge. Therefore, expect to work harder than you thought you would.

3. Work Environment –

The work environment at a start-up is almost definitely going to be less formal than the work environment at an established corporation. Which will work great for you if you are an easy going person who loves going to work in shorts, and maybe even dreams of sipping on a beer while working? On the flip side, if you are extremely meticulous about your work environment, the easy-going-ness of it all may scare you a little. But believe us, if anything is going to be easy-going, it’s just the work environment because you will have so much work you will be glad for the slack the lack of stringent procedures cuts you. (slack and lack just rhymed 🙂 )

4. Work life Balance –

Working at a start-up means that work life balance will be off balance. You may get calls at unearthly hours to fix a bug, and vacations may be non-existent. Weekends may not exist either. So your work becomes your life and you may have little scope to have a life outside of your work.

5. Risks –

Risks and Start-ups are synonymous. There is a huge possibility that the idea underlying the start-up may not sell and therefore bring your career stint at a startup to a grinding halt. The experience can be chaotic and you may have to do a lot of thinking on your feet. If there is any certainty when it comes to working in a start-up, it is this – there is no certainty.

Our reason for writing this post is not to dissuade you from leaving a large corporation to join a start-up. It is simply to let you know what the bargain will be. Sure, it is no easy task to conceive and work towards establishing a startup. It requires a lot of grit, courage and dedication. While life at an MNC may be stable and lucrative, working in a startup is more likely to be an actual test for your skills, or the skills you thought you possessed. It is very important to take calculated career risks and we would say, go for it, if you believe in the idea of the start-up you want to join! Just think hard before you take the plunge!

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