4 Lessons for Future Startup Employees

Next Wednesday, Startup Institute Boston is hosting our monthly Important People Honest Conversations event. We’re excited that Sarah Hodges, the co-founder of Intelligent.ly and a well known digital marketer, blogger, and marketing strategist in Boston, will be joining us for a candid conversation. As we gear up for next week’s event, I want to share what I learned from June’s IPHC featuring Sean Lindsay of TapJoy and Eric Newman of Simple Tuition. They had great advice for anyone joining or already a part of the fast-paced world of startups. Here are the key lessons learned:

  1. Be ruthless with your time. There is always so much to get done and you must learn to prioritize where you spend your time. Get comfortable with the fact that you will not get through your to-do list. Remember, the stuff you aren’t getting done is not as important as the stuff you are getting done.
  2. Do your homework. It’s extremely important when networking to understand both the company and the background of the person you’re meeting with. You should have an informed point of view. Try to identify areas where the company may be able to improve and make statements like, “Well have you thought about this…” It shows that you are eager, passionate, and thoughtful about how you can help their business.
  3. Optimize for learning. When it comes to accepting a job offer, the most important factor to consider is room for personal growth. You must determine if the the company hiring will make an investment back in you by encouraging and supporting continuous learning. This will better your future more than accepting an offer based on company mission or salary.
  4. Identify your outlets. In the demanding world of startups, it’s easy for your job to become all consuming. You cannot let this happen. Spend time doing the things you love, whether it’s going for weekend hikes, taking a cooking class, or practicing yoga daily. Always make time for you friends and family because that’s what matters most. They’re the ones that will be there for you if your startup turns into an epic failure!

So, now you’re that much more equipped for when you graduate Startup Institute. First you have to apply though.