Four Things I Learned in my First Month at a Startup

Take Ownership

Startup employees are notoriously busy, taking on not only their role-related duties but also responsibilities beyond their job description. As a new employee, it may seem daunting to take ownership of anything so early on, but if you see an area that could use improvement (as is inevitable at any startup), whether its documentation or employee on-boarding,  taking it upon yourself to contribute to that area is highly encouraged! As always, running it by your manager and letting others know about your plans is a good idea before diving in. This type of initiative will not only help you leave a lasting impact but also demonstrate that you truly care for the company and its future success.

Culture is Everything

Here at Jana, there is a major emphasis on company culture. From monthly fun events, to happy hours and Jana Iron Chef, it is hard to imagine not being excited about to going work. By cultivating a close-knit culture of people not afraid to have fun and let loose, going to work seems like less of chore and more of a place where one can be productive and enjoy doing it. This is my first job out of college, but none of my past work and internship experiences have been able to achieve such a fun and exciting office environment. Even after only four weeks, it is clear to me that Jana employees genuinely enjoy working with each other day in and day out.

Communication is Key

One thing that has blown my mind about working at a startup is how often things can change and how new information and ideas pop up on a daily basis. In order to keep track and on top of everything going on at a startup, good communication is essential. Some examples of ways that Jana has facilitated consistent communication are 1) each team has an approximately 15 minute daily meeting in which everyone gives an update and informs any other team members of tasks that may be blocking their progress, 2) weekly company-wide meetings where we go over new learnings, exciting accomplishments and any other company news, and 3) endless Slack channels that cover everything from cute animals to product ideas and company financials. Even though the amount of information can sometimes be overwhelming, I can confidently say that Jana makes me feel in-the-loop.

The Startup Community is a Great One

I didn’t know that I wanted to work at a startup until I started interviewing at them. And I must say, I’m glad I landed at an awesome startup. The startup community, especially in the Greater Boston Area is outstanding and strongly connected. Whether you’re looking for a new job for yourself or a friend, the startup network is one you definitely want to be a part of! My coworkers have connections and experiences at startups all over Boston, and it’s humbling knowing that I am creating friendships and professional relationships with such talented people. The types of people that work at Jana have a love for learning and growing their network, attending various meetups in the area, hosting local university events and traveling to various conferences across the country. As a recent college grad, I’m glad to have left one inspiring community and quickly transitioned to another!startup-life

Photo credit: morganatwork.com


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