Startups vs Big Tech Company (which is better?)

Today we're going to talk about a very fascinating interesting topic startups versus big tech companies it is coffee time with the tech lead I am the tech lead at Google tech lead by the way let's have a sip here not bad not bad at all now sunny cooler let me just clarify something for you if you are working in tech adult and I think that you're gonna be doing great you're gonna be doing good and no choice is really going to be a bad choice and startup or big tech company it's all good really now I have worked in a combination of startups as well as at Google as an X Google tech lead and they're very different in some ways but they're also very similar the quality of life that you get your overall standard of living it's about the same really now we have a new sponsor today and I would actually highly recommend that you guys check them out ting mobile if you live in the US and you're using cell phone service and you're paying like 50 60 bucks a month for this service it's a contract you're locked into one or two year contracts you know that's just really not the way to go there are far better options ting Mobile offers you paper use cell phone service and the cost is very cheap you can figure out how much it might cost you I would say for an average person it's probably gonna be 15 to 25 bucks or something like that and one of the best parts is that there's no contract you're not locked into anything you know I remember when I was trying to become a world citizen travel all over the place and embrace that mobile lifestyle one of the things I was really locking me down was my cell phone service it was just tying me to the u.s. tied me down there with that one or two-year cell phone contract and that was one thing that kept weighing on me so with t-mobile you get a no contract cell phone plan you get voice messaging data all comes at the very reasonable standard rate and the great thing is it's so simple to setup there's no contract you just send them a dollar they send you a SIM card back you plug that into your cell phone and then you're off and running and when you're gonna save so much money check them out ting Mobile there'll be a link in the description below and you can thank me later you know no matter whether you're working at a startup or a big tech company you're gonna be having a pretty sweet comfy job you're gonna go and you work at the computer you do some typing do some code spend some time surfing the net surfing reddit play some ping pong you may have to pay for your online tour you may get some lunch catered and by the way the food that these large tech companies are not necessarily better there may simply just be more variety but it's all going to be buffet style food and often is quite easy to beat any of the sweet just go to any restaurant and the food quality is already going to be beaten supposedly they like to advertise that they've got all-star chefs but in order to feed thousands of people it's just going to cost way too much they're gonna end up using more basic ingredients trip ingredients and then do it buffet style and you're not going to want to eat too much food anyway it's not gonna be healthy for you just gonna get overweight essentially most of the time no matter where you are you're going to be working at the computer doing some code across startups and big tech companies is going to be similar now let's talk about the main differences here one is going to be compensation compensation at a tech company a public tech company is going to be well-known it's going to be fixed you're gonna know exactly what you're getting is a public company and when you get stuck you're gonna know for sure that that's going to be worth something when you go into a start-up you don't really know what the value of that stock is going to be and oftentimes it's going to be a complete mystery it's going to be completely obfuscated for you and startups have a bunch of different ways to screw you over they can dilute the stock they can kick you out fire you before they IPO they can delay their IPO intentionally and force you to stick around and stay at the company and work longer they can tell you that you have a million shares but it really there could be a hundred trillion shares outstanding and many companies simply aren't going to tell you what percentage of the company you truly own and even if you were to somehow find that out which you probably won't be able to find out most companies I've seen they never quite tell you exactly what percentage you own even if you do find out they're just going to devalue that when you finally leave the company when you quit oftentimes they'll say that you have to exercise these stock options within a certain amount of time like saying you got three months to use that up and when you do exercise those options you're going to have to pay tons of taxes on this stuff if the company never IPOs and it could take ten years before the company actually IPOs you've just paid a bunch of money on stock and you've taken a big risk you don't really know what you're getting sometimes this stuff all pans out maybe you'll get some money but oftentimes it's not necessarily going to be life-changing money I'm known scenarios where I've joined companies actually in other people join companies and then the startup eventually gets acquired right acquisition happens more commonly than IPOs and in an acquisition everybody gets some payment for their stock it's not all that much it's not really life-changing money you might be like 50 K right 60 K something like that if you're lucky it could be more if you're not lucky it could be less one thing that a lot of engineers don't know is that even if your engineer number one at the company you could already be getting less than say 1% of the company you would be putting in as much work if not more work than the founders and still the founders would have like 99% of the company you would have one percent or even 0.1% by the time your employee numbers say ten or twenty your ownership would already be point zero zero one percent or something like that it would be a minuscule amount and that's just a culture of startups personally I got so disgusted by all of this one time I remember I had the business partner a friend and we were going to start a company together and then he said that yeah we would be 50/50 partners except he wanted 50.1% and I would get 49.9% I just thought why why not just 5050 and he was so insistent on this point that it smelled fishy to me and I backed out of the whole deal and I didn't start the business because I figured that he could just say well let's take a vote should I get kicked out of the company after I feel everything yeah let's take a vote he's got 51% ownership oh yeah he wins I mean he could just kick me out he can do whatever he wants now it's just our pretty tricky and I remember there were even times in my life when I just sort of said to myself I don't like startups I don't want to work at them and if I were gonna work I would rather work either for a large tech company or I would found the company on my own and those would be the options I would be going for now having said that let's talk about some of the good things about startups because I've worked out a few of them and there's some good things about them one is the challenges are going to be very different between start-up and large tech company large tech company you often work in a large code base a lot of the challenges are going to be organizational you're going to have to deal with a lot of people cross-functional teams and there's going to be a ton of code and people blocking everything that you're trying to do and in a small tech company in a start-up you're going to have a lot more freedom and anything you want to do anything you want to try just not going to be a lot of people standing away you want to try something you have the flexibility to try that and that goes for rolls as well so if you don't really want to be an engineer let's say you want to be more of a product manager or designer or prototype or in a large tech company it would be an entire shift in careers you would have to get the proper approvals maybe even do an interview just so that you could do some p.m. work however in its small startup you're gonna have a lot more freedoms to take on any role that you want and in this sense I would say that there may even be better career mobility for example if you wanted to get into management it may take a lot of effort to get into say senior management at Google right that would require you proving yourself and everything but if you were to go to a start-up you could probably get a management role quite easily because the requirements just aren't as strict you can start building up your experience and over a number of years you would have that experience and then you can transfer into large tech company like Google and do management there and you would already have built up a lot of that experience if that were your interest and so if there were areas in your career that you want to do develop more into a startup may be a good path for that and that's really what a startup is good for I would say it's learning so I would recommend this if you are a junior engineer or even if you're not and you want to get some more experience and learn and build your skills in a certain technology there may be a field that you're interested in getting more until you think it's cool and you want to do that then the startup is a great way to do that the worst reason to join the startup is because you think as a library ticket and it's going to make you rich and you hate the work and you're not trying to learn anything but you're just doing that currently for the money because in that scenario I would say I startup there's a little chance it's going to work out for you if I you curveballs money the other thing I might mention here is that I don't think money is the proper motivation number one if you're a junior engineer say either way your pace look I know it sounds like a lot for you now but it's not going to make a difference for you in a few years when you look back on that salary range that you're at just spend your time trying to learn and guide your career in the direction that you want it to go to but trying to argue and optimize for a few thousand bucks here and there it's just not really the right time to be doing that because you're really splitting pennies at point the other great thing about startups is they can be a little bit more closed now I remember I worked in a start-up with one of my professors and during the company holiday party it was just us with our spouses or girlfriends or boyfriends or whatever and there just felt more like a family the office was like the professor's living room you don't really get this sort of dynamic when you're in a larger company in which it's an open door right people are coming and going all the time and there's tons of people that you may be interacting with you don't really get to know anybody really that well sometimes people just get fired to just disappear randomly and that just seems to happen sometimes so overall let me put it this way I think that if you can get into a large tech company then you might as well try and it's good to explore your options and see what you can get but startups are great too you can learn a lot there develop your skills and experience there are some good connections get to know some people there and overall it's probably going to be a pretty good time working there because it's not like going to a large tech company like Google you're gonna have a 10 times better experience there it's not quite like that it's more like it's just bigger it's not like the food is 10 times better it's not like the computers are 10 times more powerful it's still essentially the same stuff the same environment that you're working in maybe for lunch instead of having a single item on the menu you may have 10 different items on the menu but you still just pick one thing to eat when you interact with people and self interacting with five people you may have to interact with 50 people when you work on a codebase it would just be a larger codebase and the office overall may be larger instead of having a single building there may be 10 different buildings that are interconnected but you still end up going to a single building your small little desk whenever you're going to work in that sense the work environment is similar and often in many scenarios a startups work environment the facilities the bathrooms the kitchens that stuff can actually be better and higher quality than what you may find that large tech companies I will say that for a lot of people it might make sense at some point once you've learned enough once you've developed enough experience that you may want to prioritize compensation maybe make sure that you've got some real money on the table that you can lock in there maybe tackle some different types of technical problems and challenges those that have to do with larger code bases dealing with many different types of people you know that interesting challenge in itself and also just add some more options to your lunch menu those are all things that larger tech companies will be able to offer you.

About Home Study

Technology and Life