Advice on Getting Hired at a Startup – from Startups!

While we were at Web Summit, we somehow found the time (in between signing up nearly 500 new startups) to ask some startups what they think is really important when working at a startup. This is what they said.

First off, we asked them “What is the one characteristic necessary for working in a startup?”

Quercus: “Proactive attitude.”
Part-up: “Flexibility.”
Askheem: “Motivation.”
SaveOhno: “Intense drive.”
Tip Tap Tap: “Passion.”
Outify.me: “Attitude.”
Servicesyou.com: “Sharing and including ideas and insights.”
Prentige: “Proactivity.”
LucidLMS: “Flexibility.”
Rekky: “Perseverance.”

Then, we asked them “What is your “Top Tip” for getting hired at a startup?”

Quercus: “Be enthusiastic and like the idea of the startup you want to work in.”
Part-up: “Don’t [get hired at a startup].” (They were joking, of course.)
Askheem: “Believe in the idea.”
SaveOhno: “Launch a startup [yourself].”
Tip Tap Tap: “Don’t look for money [high wages].”
Outify.me: “Be well prepared for your interview, check the website, news, product, etc.”
Servicesyou.com: “Be adaptable and have an open mind.”
Prentige: “Show energy and involvement/passion/perseverance.”
LucidLMS: “Be creative and willing to work nights.”
Rekky: “Enthusiasm, intelligence, open mind, no “I can’t do it” attitude.”

It’s easy to see some common themes emerging here. Startuppers tend to be driven, passionate and flexible.

Why are these attributes so important?

Because startups (ideally) develop at a breakneck pace. So, keeping up isn’t easy. That means people without these attributes will struggle and ultimately fall by the wayside.

As Tip Tap Tap mentioned, salaries can be lower at salaries, which is another reason that employees need to be passionate about what they’re doing – they can’t console themselves with cash if they’re not.

That said, working at a startup can be very rewarding in other ways. You will benefit from a learning curve steeper and responsibilities much greater than those found at more established companies. Because of this, you can supercharge your professional growth.

For more advice on getting hired at a startup, check out our infographic.

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