Startup vs. Corporate: Choose Your Career Gig Wisely

A few decades ago, your parents would have suffered a panic attack if you announced that you intended to work at a startup company. They would spit fire and use buzzwords such as stability, benefits and growth to push you into the corporate world. However, nowadays, the situation is radically different. Working at a startup can, in fact, provide a valuable stepping stone in one’s professional journey. Thus, choosing the right path for you depends on carefully considering what there is to win and lose from each route. Here is how:

Think of your career end-game.

As a rule of thumb, corporate job descriptions are quite narrow which means that if you are hired as a business analyst, you will only be performing in that capacity. Therefore, if your dream role is already in sight then you should opt for a corporate position. Nevertheless, in case you are still undecided about what role you want to pursue, a startup is the best place to seek employment as you are likely to have a variety of responsibilities, expand your skill set and hopefully determine what your true calling is.

Think of what you need to attain your goals

What are the ingredients for your personal success? What kind of learner are you? Corporate roles will provide instant access to a complete arsenal of resources to stretch the margins of your knowledge and experience, while working at a startup entails copious amounts of risk-taking, hunting for resources and improving through trial and error. Carefully consider how you will personally thrive in the long run before you decide.

Think of the degree of impact you want to have on business decisions

Generally, corporate positions come with limited influence while advancement to executive echelons may take years. On the other hand, a startup role will not only give you the opportunity to partake in business decisions; in most cases, it is part and parcel of the job. However, advancement in smaller businesses is usually out of the question, especially when the rank higher than yours is that of the CEO.

Think of the culture you need to thrive

Are you an outside-the-box thinker or do you need structure and discipline to achieve your goals? A choice between a corporate or a startup environment will depend on your mentality and work style.