What's the best way to get a job at a startup?

Updated on : December 8, 2021 by Harvey Campbell



What's the best way to get a job at a startup?

1. Learn All You Can About Startups
Learn all about the business, culture and challenges startups face and how everything changes depending on the stage of the company and the business model. Find out what non-technical people do in startups. Read blogs from prominent entrepreneurs and investors. Here's a short list of blogs to get you started (although there are plenty of great ones):

  • SBVTLE
  • AVC: Reflecting on a VC in New York
  • Both sides of the table: entrepreneur turned venture capitalist
  • Chris Dixon
  • Paul graham

Talk to friends and family who have founded, financed, or worked in startups. Attend relevant Sk

Keep reading

1. Learn All You Can About Startups
Learn all about the business, culture and challenges startups face and how everything changes depending on the stage of the company and the business model. Find out what non-technical people do in startups. Read blogs from prominent entrepreneurs and investors. Here's a short list of blogs to get you started (although there are plenty of great ones):

  • SBVTLE
  • AVC: Reflecting on a VC in New York
  • Both sides of the table: entrepreneur turned venture capitalist
  • Chris Dixon
  • Paul graham

Talk to friends and family who have founded, financed, or worked in startups. Attend the relevant Skillshare classes and one of the Lean Startup Machine weekend seminars (these are also great networking opportunities - more on networking below).
2. Decide if the life of a startup is really for you
Now that you have learned about how start-ups work and the culture, decide if it is something you are sure you want to do. Understand that you will be underpaid and overworked. That there is a lot of uncertainty and it is risky.
Also understand the benefits, like having a lot of responsibility, being able to work with incredibly talented and motivated people in an amazing work environment, and having the opportunity to build something innovative and meaningful that can have a lasting effect on society. If you are lucky enough to join a successful startup (which is probably rarer than you think), there can be significant financial payoff as well. I shared my thoughts on this topic in a Quora thread titled "Why do people want to work at startups?"
3. Identify a target list of companies by industry, product, and stage.
Based on your research in step one, determine where you want the company to be based on your risk tolerance, skill set, and interests. Pick an industry or two that you are passionate about. Know everything about the industry and the companies that comprise it.
Then make a target list of the companies you would like to work for. Become an advanced user of your products if you are consumer oriented. Learn all you can about the company, its challenges, and its culture.
4. Formulate Your Pitch
Match what you like to do and what you are good at with the needs of the company (as determined above).
5. Plug in your butt
Networking is a whole topic on its own, but the most important things you need to know about networking are: 1) It's about helping others first with no expectations of reciprocity; 2) It's about building relationships over time, not just meeting people; 3) You have to have something that people want or you won't get very far; and 4) It takes time to build good relationships and derive value from them.
New York City has big events that cater to the startup community almost every night of the week. The most essential resources that I recommend that you use regularly are Gary's Guide and Meetup.
You should also reach out to everyone you already know to ask if they can introduce you to someone who has founded, financed, or worked for a new company. Use networking as an opportunity to get advice, learn about startups and trends, and meet more people who have founded, financed, or worked for a new company.
For more information on networking, I recommend the books Never Eat Alone and The Startup of You, and my Skillshare class, How to Build an Awesome Professional Network.
6. Come in!
Now you are ready for meetings and interviews. Get out your list of goals. Use LinkedIn to see if you know someone who is connected to the company and can give a presentation or if you know someone in the company. Request a meeting.
If you don't know anyone in the company and can't be introduced, you'll have to go cold. Look up someone's email and write a very short, personalized email requesting an "informational" coffee meeting or phone call for advice and more information about the company as a way to get acquainted.
Build a relationship. Try to help them in any way you can. Deliver your speech from step four.
7. Prove your worth
You must have a blog that showcases your knowledge, skills, and character. Quora is another great tool for that. Have a strong and complete LinkedIn profile. Create followers on Twitter.
I would recommend offering to work part-time for free, especially if you are dealing with an early stage business. Use it as an opportunity to show your worth, as well as to determine if you like the people and the work you will be doing. Develop ideas on how to help the company implement them. Make presentations, line up offers and sales, write a marketing plan, design something, etc.

Choose work, obviously.

It's not to offend you, but the most important quality for a startup founder / CEO is making decisions through thick and thin.

Do a start-up:

  • If you have an idea / product with a customer who pays on day zero (presale) / day one (MVP good enough).
  • Have a good team or you can build a team with your quality network. You cannot hire all team members at the same time. Believe me, those people don't give a shit about your vision and only care about your monthly goals and your salary. You need someone who believes in your vision and CAN work without pay for some / some / many * months when startup has absolutely N
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Choose work, obviously.

It's not to offend you, but the most important quality for a startup founder / CEO is making decisions through thick and thin.

Do a start-up:

  • If you have an idea / product with a customer who pays on day zero (presale) / day one (MVP good enough).
  • Have a good team or you can build a team with your quality network. You cannot hire all team members at the same time. Believe me, those people don't give a shit about your vision and only care about your monthly goals and your salary. You need someone who believes in your vision and CAN work without pay for a few / some / many * months when the startup has absolutely NO money.
  • Don't think, you can build the product, get customers in one month, sell it the next season. It takes time. Most startups take 8-10 years to be listed as successful companies **.
  • Realize that building a business is an infinite game. For a well-run business, it is NOT won or lost. Successful companies have been around for decades.

PS:
* People have commitments and not all people can work 18 months for free. The point is that they should have an attachment to the vision.
** Getting a billion dollar valuation is NOT successful.

What really stands out in a startup are its achievements and its experience. From a startup perspective, this is really standing out in a specific area (eg great visual design) or being a generalist and excelling in many areas as needed in startups (eg building sites on your own, stack complete), so it is invaluable.

What entrepreneurs, and ultimately startups, are looking for are people who can execute and produce, especially those with an entrepreneurial streak. This means graduates and experienced people, working on side projects (or open source).

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What really stands out in a startup are its achievements and its experience. From a startup perspective, this is really standing out in a specific area (eg great visual design) or being a generalist and excelling in many areas as needed in startups (eg building sites on your own, stack complete), so it is invaluable.

What entrepreneurs, and ultimately startups, are looking for are people who can execute and produce, especially those with an entrepreneurial streak. This means graduates and experienced people, working on side projects (or open source), building a website / product / app that has some traction, or demonstrates good product / design / engineering aptitude. These projects also serve as great talking points with people in startups.

For those who are not on the technical side, if you are a product / marketing person, a good way to promote yourself would be a blog detailing your perspectives on various products in areas of your interest and one would take on startups in those domains. If you like using Q&A sites, for example, you might have a blog post commenting on similar startups in that space, your experience using them, the pros and cons of each, how they compare, and how they might. be better and direction. they will lead.

Lastly, networking is one of the best ways to start a business. If you work / talk to good people and impress them they will remember you and want to work with you (again), it's all about credibility.

I worked with a group of eBay friends in the process of landing a startup job. Start with the tired, but smart, refraining from tapping into your network. Your goal is to talk to people who have extensive coverage / knowledge of interesting startups. This includes angels, venture capital, fellow entrepreneurs, bloggers, startup-focused recruiters (Cole Group, Riviera Partners, etc.). One of your friends knows someone from that group, if not. When introducing someone who is widely networked among startups, ask the person who knows them to introduce you as someone you value and

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I worked with a group of eBay friends in the process of landing a startup job. Start with the tired, but smart, refraining from tapping into your network. Your goal is to talk to people who have extensive coverage / knowledge of interesting startups. This includes angels, venture capital, fellow entrepreneurs, bloggers, startup-focused recruiters (Cole Group, Riviera Partners, etc.). One of your friends knows someone from that group, if not. When introducing someone who is widely networked among startups, ask the person who knows them to introduce you as someone you value and think could be a great person to talk to. Get in touch with an offer for a coffee / drink, something very light on time, and be as friendly as possible, that is, "

Once you've established a conversation, don't talk about looking for work (unless you're a recruiter). You want to make a big impression on that person who is smart, successful, and has a strong opinion about a space, industry, or industry companies that the angel / investor / entrepreneur is focused on. Your focus is on getting a presentation or a referral. Make it incredibly easy for that person to do both by giving them insight into your focus and skills in the industry. Once introduced to your company / companies of interest, take a look at this answer on Quora: What kind of credentials / experience would a young person interested in a strategy / business development role in a startup need? I hope this helps.

If you are looking for startups, I think the best place is http://news.ycombinator.com/jobs. There are a lot of big YC companies and a lot of them are hiring.

If there is a startup that you are interested in, I suggest that you just send them an email. I know a lot of startup founders and they are all desperate to find people.

When communicating, write a simple email that describes who you are and what your offer is. I would avoid being too formal, no "Dear Hiring Manager" or "Dear Sir / Madam", just be great.

This approximates my ideal cover letter:

Hi guys,


I saw your work posted on X, and I'm really interested in

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If you are looking for startups, I think the best place is http://news.ycombinator.com/jobs. There are a lot of big YC companies and a lot of them are hiring.

If there is a startup that you are interested in, I suggest that you just send them an email. I know a lot of startup founders and they are all desperate to find people.

When communicating, write a simple email that describes who you are and what your offer is. I would avoid being too formal, no "Dear Hiring Manager" or "Dear Sir / Madam", just be great.

This approximates my ideal cover letter:

Hi guys,


I saw your work posted on X, and I'm really interested in the frontend engineer position. I took some time to look at your product and I think Y, Z and A are really fascinating.


I was one of the first employees at B, where I led the frontend team to develop a couple of new products, C and D.


Currently I am still working on B, but I think it is time to move on. I am particularly interested in joining a startup like yours.


Thanks,

Tim


Some of my current projects: http://github.com/X

My blog / portfolio: http://example.com

Keep it simple and to the point, and highlight anything particularly relevant to the startup you are applying for.

The most important parts, for me at least, are the things you've done that no one told you to do. I love seeing people with side projects, blogs, or open source contributions.

If you are transitioning from a more traditional career path, there is often the chicken and egg problem of startups who just want to hire people with startup experience. But basically what most startups are looking for is passion and culture to match, often on the same level as skills. Working at a startup is as much about rushing as anything else, so go out there and get it. I'll take a scammer with weaker skills over a prima-donna or lazy office space guy with better skills any day.

Certainly volunteering is a great way; I've seen people get jobs with the message "I will show up and work for a week for fr

Keep reading

If you are transitioning from a more traditional career path, there is often the chicken and egg problem of startups who just want to hire people with startup experience. But basically what most startups are looking for is passion and culture to match, often on the same level as skills. Working at a startup is as much about rushing as anything else, so go out there and get it. I'll take a scammer with weaker skills over a prima-donna or lazy office space guy with better skills any day.

Certainly volunteering is a great way; I've seen people get a job with the "I'll show up and work a week for free. If you like me, hire me." Getting closer.

Finally, there are programs (like ours at the Startup Institute and General Assembly) that can demonstrate to potential employers an appetite for those who want to change careers; as well as giving them the practical experience to demonstrate not only aptitude, but also passion and cultural adequacy.

I discovered quite late in my job search that venture capitalists and angels are an incredible under-exploited resource for getting great leads. Venture capitalists have a reputation for being notoriously tough to deal with and that's true if you're trying to sell them something. But if you have something to offer one of the companies in your portfolio, I find that they are incredibly generous when it comes to opening doors.

In particular, they excel at pointing you out to companies that have a lot of potential or an exciting vision but, for whatever reason (stealth, business, fear of headlines), have decided on the best stream.

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I discovered quite late in my job search that venture capitalists and angels are an incredible under-exploited resource for getting great leads. Venture capitalists have a reputation for being notoriously tough to deal with and that's true if you're trying to sell them something. But if you have something to offer one of the companies in your portfolio, I find that they are incredibly generous when it comes to opening doors.

In particular, they excel at pointing you out to companies that have a lot of potential or exciting vision but, for whatever reason - stealth, corporate, fear of headlines - have decided that the best current strategy is to keep a low profile and not do a big deal. public presence. It can be quite difficult to find these companies on your own, as they are not posted to Techcrunch every week.

This day in everyone's life does not come every day. Only the few who decide to make a change will be the lucky ones to seize the opportunity. We are presenting multiple opportunities (> 50) in number of startups (~ 20) in a very short time: 4 hours! Don't you think so? Come experience it.

Headstart Higher: Powered by HelloMeets
Venue: Amazon Internet Services, 5th Floor, Salcon Rasvilas, Behind Select City Walk, Saket, New Delhi
Date: May 23, 2015
Time: 11 AM M.

It's an invitation-only event - you must purchase your ticket by registering at HEADSTART HIGHER, last remaining! Do not miss it.

He

Keep reading

This day in everyone's life does not come every day. Only the few who decide to make a change will be the lucky ones to seize the opportunity. We are presenting multiple opportunities (> 50) in number of startups (~ 20) in a very short time: 4 hours! Don't you think so? Come experience it.

Headstart Higher: Powered by HelloMeets
Venue: Amazon Internet Services, 5th Floor, Salcon Rasvilas, Behind Select City Walk, Saket, New Delhi
Date: May 23, 2015
Time: 11 AM M.

It's an invitation-only event - you must purchase your ticket by registering at HEADSTART HIGHER, last remaining! Do not miss it.

Headstart Higher, a flagship event of the Headstart Network Foundation, is a unique startup recruiting event and the largest in India in a speed dating setting. Its goal is to connect both startups and candidates.

There are many ways to get a job at a startup. Most of the time it is by referral through a friend or a FoF. Not many can go without a referral due to a lack of confidence in candidates which can lead to poor hiring. Although startups are still looking for good candidates to join their team, there are very few recruitment events where good candidates without a reference in the startup ecosystem have the opportunity to work at a startup.

Here's one way to get any startup's attention:

  • Identify some critical needs the organization has (perhaps some the founders haven't thought of yet);
  • Explain what you would do if you started work tomorrow;
  • Show that you can already do this by providing helpful feedback, information, and value today (before you start interviewing).

And a bonus tip: it looks like you're having fun doing it.

- Greg

The best way to join a startup is by doing two things, in my opinion.

1) You need to find out why and how you can contribute to the start-up. What motivated you and what do you want to do after joining, whether it is technology-oriented or service-oriented. You need to know what will add value to the business and, in return, how the business will add value to you.

2) Once you've figured this out and you're committed. Find start-up meetings on Meet Up, college briefings, Eventbite, conferences, or hosted by local startup organizations. But in my opinion the best

Keep reading

The best way to join a startup is by doing two things, in my opinion.

1) You need to find out why and how you can contribute to the start-up. What motivated you and what do you want to do after joining, whether it is technology-oriented or service-oriented. You need to know what will add value to the business and, in return, how the business will add value to you.

2) Once you've figured this out and you're committed. Find start-up meetings on Meet Up, college briefings, Eventbite, conferences, or hosted by local startup organizations. But in my opinion, the best way is to sell directly to a startup. Find a few of them that interest you and just start asking for coffee quotes / informational interviews. In the interview, be interested in the company and express whatever in 1). Once the person is impressed, stay in touch with them so that when the opportunity presents itself, you know it. So be sure to email him every 3 weeks or so. Or if you have friends, ask them to give you a reference when jobs come up.

Hope these tips help. Honestly, if you are interested and passionate enough, you will find your place in a startup.

More generally, the best way to get a job at a startup is

  1. network,
  2. know yourself (i.e. honestly assess your strengths / added value) and
  3. be able to effectively communicate your capabilities, and
  4. Find and communicate with decision makers in startups who are looking at major pain points for which your strengths / added value would be mutually beneficial.

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