Red Flags: Not to Join that Startup!

Startup business has never been a hip before. In the recent years, working at startups has become the new trend among millennials. Typically hardworking and idealist, millennials can contribute their creativity and innovation for thriving startups. For newly-graduated millennials, startups are best-suited for those longing to work in a place where they can embrace freedom while developing their entrepreneurial skills.

However, with the current proliferation of startups, people need to be more careful in choosing the startup they would like to work for. When they let their guard down, people tend to fall as victims of scam or fraud startup, which only takes advantage of their dedication. If you are planning to apply for a job in startups, here are four red flags that tell you not to join that startup.


Too-good-to-be-true offers

As the name suggests, startup is an entry level business funded by its founder to develop new business models. Contrast to corporates which have many different departments, startup jobs are typically filled with few highly-multitasking workers. As newly-founded company, the annual revenue is no more than $100,000.

Considering these facts, working for startups generally do not interest people who seek material benefits. However, if you happen to find startup jobs that offer high salary and greater benefits that does not make sense for entry level position, you need to learn further details about the company and its prospect in the future.

When you smell something is not right, just say ‘No!’ and move on to other startups. Sometimes, you think that the job offer is too good to be true, then maybe it really is.


Hire too fast

Recruitment is a process to define whether your qualifications fit the company’s requirement or not. Big companies never rush for hiring their employees. Rather they take time, and pay more attention to details on how to find the right people for the right job. No wonder that sometimes it takes weeks and months together, before someone is really hired for a job position.

So if a startup hires you within days after sending the job application even without test or further rounds of interview, then you need to be suspicious of the offer because chances are, the jobs are fraud.

When they persuade you by saying that there are other talented candidates for the job, do not get swayed because it means that they want you to grab the job without any questions.


Un-scalable products

Some startups are growing big in short time, while some stay stagnant over the years, while there are others that close down in months. Rather than investing your time on small startups, which only reach minor audience, investors prefer funding bigger companies that appeal to wider markets.

The founders might think that they have great ideas, but without proper market research, the startup will go nowhere. Thus, before deciding to join a startup, you need to know what kind of products they are developing, the target market, company positioning, as well as the impact of the brand. If you find a startup that does not have clear sense of directions on these points, then you need to re-think about joining the team.


Unprofessional company culture

You do not have to be part of the company to know the company culture. Just pay attention to how the startup processes your job application. An example of unprofessional company culture is poor communication. For example, one day you get invitation for a test and the result will be notified in a week. A week passes by and there is no notification from the employer.

You think that you fail the test and ready to move on to other jobs. However, weeks later they call you (without initial apology or explanation about the delay) notifying you, that you should take another test or interview. If you face such kind of a situation, just refuse the invitation because there is something wrong with the startup management.

What are your thoughts after reading these red flag signals? Being unemployed is difficult, but it should not make you randomly accept job offers from any startups or corporates. If you have a similar experience in dealing with scam startups, share with us and let others draw insights.