- Flexibility. Many folks that work for startups like the flexibility. The corporate world is designed around a “spouse at home” model and has made little progress over the last five decades. At startups, taking a day for a family event or to work from home to let the plumber in is normal for both men and women.
- Control. Most educated, driven folks value control. Self-determination, for most human beings, is worth a high price. At a smaller company, the level of control is often worth the risk.
- Leadership. For historically under-represented groups in management, sometimes joining the management team at a startup is the only shot they have at becoming part of the senior team. Note that startups with diverse management teams fail at a much lower rate than 90 percent+.
- Security. This might sound surprising, but a startup’s short-term future is fairly predictable. Think of it this way, if you raise a round at your startup, you will have a pretty good fix on your role for the next 12 months. Also keep in mind that most folks at a startup do not have the goal to be at the same company in 10 years— that would be the definition of failure. On the other hand, corporate security isn’t what it used to be, and when you’re a small fish in a big pond, it can be harder to have the foresight of your position’s stability.
- Experience. Many entrepreneurs do it for the experience, not the exit potential. They are smart enough to know that risk-adjusted, the earnings from an exit are no better than a corporate bonus.
– Shereen Shermak, CEO