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Finding the Right Role for You

November 21, 2023

The most important aspect of landing a role that’s right for you is to know which kind of company and job is right for you, first.

There are a variety of company sizes and structures, and there’s no right or wrong answer - different options are simply better for different people!

Some of the places we recommend job searching include: 

Agency recruiters: Building relationships with agencies like Recruiting from Scratch is one of the most over-looked ways to land jobs with great companies. When you partner with an agency - you’re gaining access to many companies vs. one. If one particular role isn’t the right fit, there are plenty of other opportunities recruiters can connect you to.

Top job finding websites like LinkedIn and Indeed: We’ve found some great hires who’ve applied on job sites like LinkedIn and Indeed - and recommend candidates continuously monitor these sites while job searching. Setting up alerts can be a great way to keep informed on opportunities.

Your network: Let other people know that you’re job searching, even if they’re not directly in your industry. Sending a text, a LinkedIn message or an email are all good ways to do this.

If you think you want a job at a startup or a smaller company (<10 people)

Overall, startups seek people who want a lot responsibilities in several different areas. They’re looking for candidates with a particular set of skills to help your pain points, and focus less on titles.

Hires we often see at this stage: Engineering, Product, a senior Sales person, and occasionally Operations.

How to know if this isn’t a good fit for you: If you want a lot of mentorship and structure. While fine, it’s often not a recipe for early stage success, and you may instead wish to work at larger companies.

How to tailor your interview prep: Prepare to answer questions about what drew you to the company and their mission, and why you want to work for an early-stage company specifically.

Important note: When interviewing for a startup, it’s important to highlight senior-level experience. Even if you’re a more junior candidate, are there leadership responsibilities that you’ve taken on in past roles, or projects you’ve overseen? Be sure that your capabilities shine during the interview.

If you think you want a job at a mid-size company

When companies reach this size, they still need to make sure they’re bringing on excellent hires who can quickly contribute, but they don’t need to be as much of generalists as your first hires. In fact, they may excel at solving niche problems that you’ve encountered while building your business.

Hires we often see at this stage: More leadership hires, like in Marketing, Finance, or Engineering, to manage individual contributors who were brought on earlier, or niche Engineering or Product roles.  

How to know if this isn’t a good fit for you: If you’re uncomfortable with shifting goals and roles. While this occurs at smaller stages too, it’s likely that your company will undergo even more pivots as the company ramps up funding and  finds product-market fit.

How to tailor your interview preparation: Like startups, you’ll want to prepare for interview questions that ask what drew you to the company, but you’ll also want to prepare for questions on what you can do to propel the business forward in their stage of growth. In these companies, you’ll need to prepare for.

If you think you want at a job at a large enterprise

At more than 50 employees, you’ll need more structure and support for your teams. Having a dedicated, senior HR leader or Chief People Officer is often a critical hire at this stage to help set your company’s hiring strategy and goals.

Hires we often see at this stage: Roles like project managers, technical experts, or more data scientists, to build out projects. Support roles at this stage too can be important - like more support for your customer service team, or sales operations.

How to tailor your interview prep: In these companies, you’ll be even more of a specialist than generalist, so you’ll want to prepare for specific questions on projects and abilities. Write out what specific projects can you help with within your area of expertise.  

How to know if this isn’t a good fit for you: If you have limited cross-functional experience. Departments need to work together more and get each other’s buy-in before pursuing projects as a company grows, so it’s important to be ready for this without getting frustrated or not making progress on their company goals.

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