How to get Hired in the Startup Industry


It can be an excellent career step to work for a startup. You will be working on a new and exciting product or service, you will have the opportunity to grow with the business, and you may have the possibility of earning equity and paycheck in the organization.

Is the Startup Industry Right for You?

For the right person, the start-up work environment is awesome. Startups, for other people, might feel like a messy, unorganized system; which they sometimes are, to be honest. But amid the confusion, a right person can find peace and mess in order. 

Think like a Startup:

Mindset is one of the biggest differences between company employees and start-up employees. You play by the rules in a corporate setting and step up the ranks. You can’t play by the rules in a startup because there is no one.  Startups keep on experimenting. Nearly every major decision ends with someone saying, “I have an idea. I don’t know if it’s going to work, but I think it’s going to work. Let’s test it and calculate the outcomes.” Instead of saying, “I’m going to work for a start-up,” say, “I like the idea of start-up work. If it’s for me, I don’t know for sure, but I’ll find out.”

Merely your resume won’t get you hired:

That’s not to suggest that you don’t need to have a great one ready, but for a startup, it’s all about figuring out the real story of a person— where he grew up, what he’s passionate about and what kinds of commitments he’s made in the past— the kinds of things that can’t be conveyed by bullet points on a screen. “They’re taking the positive energy beyond the resume and you can’t really plan for it,” they say. It’s not something that you can either fake. You either have it or you don’t, and in an interview, one can say that pretty fast.

Respond to the Job Postings with utmost specificity:

No one is impressed by the “spray and pray” job-hunting technique, i.e. submitting your resume blindly to any open job. When you think about it, it’s pretty rude— it wastes the time for the manager to review inappropriate applications. It also wastes your time as a candidate submitting work posts applications that you don’t care enough to read thoroughly. A fuzzy response gives the recruiter a clear message that you are incompetent and perhaps even desperate. Don’t just do it.

Because early-stage startups typically try to achieve big goals with a small team, they want to immerse themselves in new hires, learn quickly, see things they need to do, and then take extreme control. If you have never worked at a startup before, but have had the opportunity to start an innovative project at your company where you controlled method, execution and reporting from start to finish, you can bet that your recruiter will be interested in this skill set. In your interview, you might also want to explore your ownership’s mentality.

Do Your Homework- Know the Startup Culture:

Be prepared with the proper knowledge of the Startup you are willing to join. It actually means having knowledge about the product or service the company is working on so that you can be prepared to share feedback on how it works and where you can see areas for improvement. One should be much more interested in what I can do to enhance the service than merely thinking that it’s amazing. When you say things like that, it tells the interviewer that you really know how to make this company better.

Make Use of your Networking Skills:

Be diligent and start attending meetings based on the industry that you are seeking to enter. Alternatively, sign up for conferences attended by organizations for which you would like to work. The world is becoming smaller and you need to know the people in the industry you wish to work in.

Bonus: Always be prepared

The hiring process can be simple, with fewer formalities than interviewing a traditional business applicant. Be ready for a short notice telephone interview, video call, or a casual meeting. Generally, a startup interview style is more casual than what you would wear for a formal job interview, but you should still look polished and professional. Take the time to follow up with a thank-you message or email as with any job interview.

Happy Hustling!

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