Joining a startup?

There are two types of people in the world. One who can only do a job whole life. Others who can never tolerate a job. I am the latter. Where do you belong?

Most people don’t join a start up because of a very basic reason. The risk factor.

In the beginning its all very exciting and fascinating to call yourself a CEO or Management level post. Not necessary that you’re qualified for that!

But joining a start up isn’t something alien. The following are some points which I will share out of my experiences.

The Fear Factor: Have a mentality to convince dependents. Most Indian middle class families are job oriented. Parents prefer their children to secure a good if not high paying job and a good life than themselves. Government job in India is most secure and most boring. So where’s the challenge and excitement? NONE!

The Indian society is divided into two main sections. Families and social network which has very high regard towards a job. In most bengali families if a groom is a businessman they will think twice or even thrice before giving their daughter for marriage. They will invest money in education so that he can secure a good job. But a job after all. On the contrary, the Gujarati or Marwari family will always try to settle their son with some business by giving them some initial capital. Some families strongly believe that education up to high school is enough for the child to join his father’s business!

When joining a start up one should be ready to convince the social network around that “Hey I’m doing a start up, the boat is gonna be rocking but I’m up for it…”

And once you say you up for it, be ready to pickup any job that comes to you. It can be just anything! From serving tea to cleaning desks. If you’re not comfortable in that you shouldn’t even be reading this blog!

Treat your start up like a child. Feel motherly pride in doing anything for it.

Failure: Some people fail. Don’t give up. Understand that its a business after all. There will be times when you’re amazingly happy about winning a project or cracking a deal and other times when you’re almost down and nothing works your way! Be ready to face it. Be ready to accept it. Consider the two ends of a pendulum and imagine that on one side there is joy, happiness and on the other side there is disappointment, sadness. Your journey in life is like a pendulum. It never stays happy forever and never stays disappointing always!

Financial crisis: Most people have family pressures, bank loan, EMI to pay. They will never think of starting a startup. A secure job makes you a man-eating tiger. Once a tiger has tasted the blood of a man, he will never go back to other animals. From one man to other he will prey. Similarly job seekers will seek jobs. From one company to another and another. But one must understand, the person who is putting you on a job is a businessman after all.

Problem with start ups: We all know start ups have low funds, poor infrastructure and blah blah and everything you may have read elsewhere. But a practical lesson comes when your team members have difference in opinion. Who is right and who is wrong? Mis-communication , less communication, self respect , ego all put more oil in the fire. The team breaks. A divorce happens and the child suffers.

Strategy: Have a long lasting strategy but flexible one. A start up should like water. Should take the shape in anything which holds it. If it doesn’t it becomes too rigid and breaks when strong winds blow. A start up is more client oriented. Its really crucial to have a balance in concentrating between what you DO and how you Sell. Teams of B-techs and MBAs do a good start up but you don’t have to be a MBA or a Btech to do a start up!

Be a real tiger, not a man-eater. Feel free to put your points!

4 thoughts on “Joining a startup?

  1. Saurabh Patil

    Sir,

    I am a Sem I students of M.Sc(CA) at SICSR. I have gone through your posts , and really liked reading them …

    Especially the one where in you have mentioned about you turning a vegetarian . You have made me think about quitting meat too. Also , your insight into startups is valuable to me , as I am an Enteprenuer , running a Web Design firm named Nextech Solutions.

    You may visit our site at http://www.nextech.in

    Warm Regards,
    Saurabh Patil.

  2. Parimal

    A start up should like water” – reminds me of the great Bruce Lee’s philosophy. Loved the post and the rest of the blog.

    Parimal

  3. Nadeem

    Life is a risk, no one know when it will end. So who can give the grantee of job in a well settled Company or a new start up.

    For me I’m working in a new company (just started) by quitting a job in the company which has around 190 Branches all over the world.

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