Was finding job in a start-up overwhelming/painful for you as well?

Vishal Thukral
8 replies
Last month I decided to switch jobs & join a start up. I received a few offers & currently at different stages with some. The whole process was very overwhelming for me & I wanted to see if I can do something else to make my life easier. A typical workflow looked like this for me: - Discover start-ups I am interested in on angel.co, workatstartup.com, triplebyte.com. (Filters help but not enough to narrow the search. Hence it takes a lot of time) - Start conversation with the startups I am interested in & book intro calls. (Startups, particularly at workatstartup.com were very unresponsive. Some startups simply stopped responding in the middle of the process) - Intro calls with the hiring contact. (Each call lasts about 30-45 mins & it becomes very time consuming to talk to multiple start ups) - Call with founders. (Very similar to Intro call. But, coming from the founder) - Assignments. Most start ups involve first step as take away home assignment. The typical duration of each assignment is between 2 - 4 hrs. (This is the most time consuming step) - 2 more technical rounds (each lasts 60 mins) - offer discussion (lasts around 30 mins) - 1-on-1 with team members. Completing the full process with a startup typically took me 8 hrs. Doing this with a full time job was very overwhelming. And I am pretty sure if it would have been overwhelming for the start up as well since they are doing this in parallel with multiple candidates.


Greg Ludvickson
Unfortunately, this sounds pretty standard. I moved to the UK from the US and it only took me a month to find a job, but I spent hours every day looking through Indeed, LinkedIn, angel.co, etc. I applied to over 200 jobs -- most of which never got back to me. Also, some did ask if I was still interested 4 months after my initial application, which was still worthless. I hated the whole process. My current position at a startup was a bit of luck. The CEO found my linkedin profile (I think because what we do is pretty niche, so there's a small selection pool) and he reached out to me. We scheduled an intro call and a month later I was part owner. I don't have any advice or suggestions to make your life easier, but maybe some commiseration will help.
Matthew Johnson
Startup recruiting I’ve applied to many startups, and I’ve also recruited at many startups. If I were to want to find another role at a startup, here’s how I would approach it. 1. Be more selective about the startups I apply to. Pick the ones I *really* wanted to work. Quality over quantity. 2. Go big on the application. Don’t just send over a normal cover letter and resume. Help them solve a problem. Share an insight. Show them the value you will bring to the team right away. 3. Stay in touch after the first call if you are still excited about it. Send an email right after the interview thanking them. Send more thoughts and insights about the product/business/market. Again, keep showing the value you’d bring to the team. Don’t spam them, but make it hard to forget about you. They’re probably neck deep in candidates, so the key is to set yourself apart. In my experience, half of what you’re looking for in early employees at a startup is passionate people who believe in your mission, who also have the skills you need, or can learn them quickly. I can’t tell you how many emails I get from applicants with no cover letter, no email subject, and just a resume. Be the opposite of that person. I’ve also hired people who were certainly not the most skilled in the area we were hiring for because they clearly were passionate about what we were working on. This might not be less time spent, but I think it's probably more efficient. Since you already have a full time job then time is on your side.
Matthew Johnson
@vthukral94 Sweet, I'm glad. It actually inspired me to write a blog post 🙂 https://taskablehq.com/blog/get-...
Hwei Oh
@vthukral94 @mattcrail Totally with you re: importance of a cover letter. And not just something generic that you just substitute in the company name for. Coming across thoughtfully crafted cover letters (or introductions via LinkedIn etc) makes a huge difference. It shows that you've done your research and you think it's somewhere you could be a great fit and actively contribute. Yes, it's time consuming, but hopefully you're shortlist is just that.. short. On another note, start-ups are tough because cultural fit is massive and because they've just started out on their journey, they're also trying to figure out and build what they want the "culture" to be, so they definitely spend more time finding people that have that fire in their belly to join them and will muck-in because there's little acceptance of "but that's not in my job description" (within reason). Good luck and hope you find somewhere you can truly shine at!
David Tran
Reaching out to the company by yourself is not easy. I assume you are a developer so you need to have a very nice Github profile, so the recruiter can find you easily. On LinkedIn, you should contact the CTO of the company you are looking for, they may intested in your profile.
can you elaborate upon take away home assignment?