When start-ups emerge as the new 'cool'

When start-ups emerge as the new 'cool'

Mark Zuckerberg, CEO, Facebook once quoted ‘The biggest risk is not taking any risk. In a world that is changing quickly, the only strategy that is guaranteed to fail, is not taking risks.’

When one of the co-founders of this social networking website, which was once a start-up, follows a belief like this, one finds it easier to understand why a number of youngsters opt for working in start-ups over an established and stable Multi-National Company (MNC).

At the same time, we also have the recent example of an online food ordering start-up, Tinyowl which fired around 160 employees, citing cost cutting as the reason. The question now arises is why despite this pitfall, youngsters are showing inclination towards joining a new firm.

Rajat Bhandari, a 23-year-old graphic designer, who has been working in a Delhi-based start-up for the past nine months, tells Metrolife, “I am not meant for an MNC culture. Given the restrictive and formal environment that is prevalent there, sustaining in an MNC would be difficult for me. Here in this company, I have the freedom of working in flexible time slots, without much work pressure.”

Bhandari tends to set a typical example for the present-day youth who are shunning elitism of the corporate culture. Just like him, there are hundreds of other college pass-outs who immediately want to start working forvarious personal and
financial reasons.

“One of the other disadvantages of applying for a job in MNCs is that they will always hire an experienced professional. Where will freshers go then?” he asks.

Start-ups thus provide an opportune opportunity to beginners who are on the threshold of exploring and experimenting. Smrithi Nair, 23, who is currently working as a sales manager with Zomato, explains her reason to opt for a start-up, after completing her post-graduation in Public Policy from the University of Glasgow.

“I find start-ups very flexible in terms of opportunities,” she says. “So here in Zomato, I do much more than the job of a sales manager. Unlike the rigid job profiles that are assigned to employees in MNC, start-ups enable their employees to think out-of-the-box and be more productive and resourceful.”

But these start-ups definitely don’t come with “job security” that a plush MNC offers hands down. This constant insecurity is worrisome, but those who want to test the troubled waters come with a backup plan.

“There is never job security in start-ups. I think one must always have a backup plan when working with a start-up because the growth of the company itself is very dicey,” says Pradeep Kumar, a 30-year-old graphic designer of a budding start-up.

Similarly Nair rues how “every now and then, new entrants join the company and almost every week, they have farewells for employees leaving the company”.

Meanwhile, the trend of employees constantly switching companies for better opportunities is commonplace. In an environment like this, how do start-ups sustain
their employees?

Metrolife spoke to Chandni Chopra, the Human Resource (HR) Manager of a start-up (she requests to maintain anonymity) to find out more about their hiring and firing processes, and the uncertainty that comes along with a start-up.

“When it comes to sustaining employees, I think that complete transparency and regular incentives can probably encourage one to continue with the company,” she says.

Citing her own example of working with a start-up after having five years of experience with Citibank, she elucidates, “Start-ups readily provide a fertile breeding ground for creative ideas. One feels like it’s their own company and one gets the opportunity to personally grown as an entrepreneur,” adds Chopra.

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