How To Get An Exciting Job At A Startup

How to get an exciting job at a startup

How to get a job at a startup

We ask ourselves, what do employers want when looking for someone to join their team of employees? It seems pretty simple, right? They want employees that can handle the basics – getting to work on time, meeting deadlines, working with a team, leading a group – and also some of the more job-specific requirements, like delivering on projects and coming up with killer ideas. And they want to hire someone who feels like a good fit for the company.

When I was growing up, it felt like a formula. I had to fill out my standard issue resume and cover letter, show up in a blazer, answer the interview questions without a hitch, and then cross my fingers and hope the person behind me didn’t have one extra year of experience. These days, the process of getting hired can look a lot different. Maybe you send a cover email instead of a cover letter, maybe all your interviews happen digitally, in Google Hangout, and maybe your work samples are 10x more important than your pedigree.

If you’re applying for a job at a startup, you can probably count on all of the above.

You see, entrepreneurs, the brave souls who go out on a limb and found their own companies, are under pressure. They have a thousand and one things to accomplish (like, now), and they need someone who can get things done.

When you set out to work for a startup, you’re usually applying to join a smaller team, a team where everyone pulls their weight (and then some), and a team that has to run like clockwork. And that means you are responsible for YOU. More than anything, founders need to delegate some of their responsibilities to employees they can totally trust, so they can focus on one thing – growing their business. What does this mean for you? I’m glad you asked!

During the interview process show that you are:

1. Passionate about the company and it’s specific mission.  

Entrepreneurs care so much about the mission of the company their building. Explain why you are passionate about working for their company. Entrepreneurs want to find someone who loves their company almost as much as they do. Working at a startup can be like riding a roller coaster – there are often extreme highs and lows. If you’re passionate you’ll be more likely to work harder and stay the course.

2. Entrepreneurial and ready to be responsible for big change. 

Entrepreneurs are looking for intrapreneurs. They hope to find someone with an entrepreneurial spirit. They want people who are proactive problem-solvers. Take the initiative and let the founder know some ways you would improve their company and solve problems once hired.

3. Collaborative, and not just at meetings. 

Explain situations where you worked well on a team. Startups are normally small and people will inevitably have to go “above their job descriptions.” Show that you have a collaborative mindset and are willing to do whatever it takes to help the team succeed.

4. Skilled and capable. 

Just like any job, it’s important to show that you have the skills and capabilities necessary for the position. Companies hire because they need someone to come in and solve a problem. You need to show why you’re the person who can solve their problem. Know what you’re best at and offer that to the team’s mission.

By: Elana Lyn Gross of

This article was originally published on Skillcrush


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