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What are your thoughts when it comes to working at a startup? Funding? Tech? Investors?

I am interviewing at 2 startups and both are very interesting. They are both based in the Bay area and I have the option to work fully remote.


Looking at the 2 biggest differences I have seen are the funding amounts. Both were founded the same year.


Company A: Unicorn status and valued over $2 billion. They have received over $250 million in funding.


Company B: Valued at just over $700 million. They have received around $18 million in funding.



Both companies are in hyper growth mode. Curious to what you all think I should do when looking more into it. Both pay about the same including commissions. Do you consider funding rounds and valuation when accepting a job?

Which one would you choose based on the info I provided?
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πŸ€·β€β™‚ Poll
🧠 Advice
🀝 Interviewing/Offer
15
CuriousFox
WR Officer
+11
Needer of Life Alert
Which one do you want to be a part of and talk about with excitement every day?Β 
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
That's what it is coming down to honestly. Company A has a more diverse sell. Company B is only medical. I see both disrupting their industries but that's what is making the decision hard for me.Β 
rekled
Opinionated
+2
Strategic Account Executive
I personally like more diverse sell. With friends (and a spouse) in the medical industry - one piece of bad press could wreck your future - or worse, you are acquired and left with pixie dust while the executives cash out.Β 

Show 1 more replies
CoorsKing
WR Officer
+11
King of the Coors Knights
I would look at product/culture in that case. Do you think you would be successful selling the product? Do you think they will be successful in their market long term? Do you like the culture? Sometimes hyper-growth can be very cut throat.Β 
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
I agree with the hyper-growth being cut throat. I've been apart of that before. Honestly both cultures seem great. One thing I will point out is that Company B has a lot of VERY young sales reps. I looked at all their LinkedIn profiles and most of them haven't been selling for a long time. Company A has a lot of tenured reps. Looking at it from that perspective I'd love to go to Company A for the tenured sales reps but then Company B might have more options for leadership because I have a lot more experience than most of the sales reps.Β 
CoorsKing
WR Officer
+11
King of the Coors Knights
Yeah, you may be able to out-perform the reps at B, but to your point you would miss out on possible mentorship from those at A.Β 

IMO - based on what you have shared I would make my decision on product at this point, and how well I think I could sell it. Both companies sound like decent options.

How is the leadership at both? Any history of helping previous unicorns grow & scale? Don't want a well funded company with shit leadership.
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Ca
Catdad
Good Citizen
Director of Business Development and Regulatory Affairs
Startup sales hours are nuts, so if you don’t like the product(s) don’t even think about working there or you’ll hate your life.Β 
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
Love this advice and so accurateΒ 
ExtremeVibeChecker44
Praised Answer
+2
Inside Sales
Could y'all elaborate on this? Interviewing with some startups now. Could see longer hours since they don't have any territories, quota, whatever.
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taylor
Opinionated
+2
Enterprise Sales Executive
product-market fit is more important than funding. Funding only tells part of the story. Ask about churn, both for reps & clients. Ask why.Β 

Some CEOs are good at telling their story and getting VCs to open up their wallets. Some are terrible at telling the story, but PMF is really close, so they don't need funding, instead they can use realized profitability to put back in to keep it going.Β 
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
Love this perspective. I've been at a company that got a ton of funding but the CEO was amazing at telling stories. This is something I need to pay attention more to.Β 
stanrym
Valued Contributor
+5
CEO
fundraising is the only metric of founders' ability to get funding. pick the one you'd want to sell and you feel more comfortable + see growth opportunities. possibly chat with employees to see how it's like to work in this company.
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
Love this. I have a former colleague/friend who works at Company B he loves it and is trying to convince me to come over. He's seen some really good months and really slow months with selling. Overall, he's really enjoyed it.Β 
verbalzzzzzz
Politicker
+4
Inside Sales
Go with Company A
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
Why?
verbalzzzzzz
Politicker
+4
Inside Sales
yes
Show 13 more replies
Wishbone
Good Citizen
Enterprise Account Executive
It’s a gamble either way. I had a similar situation recently and ended up going with the company I believed in more and where I thought I could grow the most- so far it has paid off. Go with your gut.Β 
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
I appreciate that. From the beginning my gut has had me leaning towards Company A. My gut usually is right for my life but we shall see lol
Smithy
Politicker
+4
Director of Sales
They are both in a good position financially meaning that they have some semblance of product market fit and they should be putting pressure on to get a client to keep the lights on.Β 

I’d go for the company that is the product you want to talk about and is also think about industry for future roles too. Is one industry better for of you want to leave in 3-5 years?
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
Great thoughts and what I needed to hear. Definitely helping me with my decision. I appreciate the input. I have decided to continue with Company A. They've been a lot more helpful and allowed me to negotiate to where I needed to be
Smithy
Politicker
+4
Director of Sales
No problem, my dude
MVP
Good Citizen
BDR
I've made that exact move in the last 2 months from Salesforce. My company sits somewhere in between and should be a unicorn soon. The market I'm on has no brand awareness and it's been a tedious process getting up and going.Β 

I would say it's only worth joining a Startup as an AE or better with large commission potential and at least a 50/50 split. At least $150k + OTE.

***NB: I don't recommend you joining as a BDR or SDR. *** Target's are simply unattainable. Nuf said
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
Agreed 100% with going in as a SDR or BDR. I did that once and luckily I made it through but it was awful. Thank you for the advice.Β 
Ch
ChunkyButters
Politicker
+5
AE
There are over 700 "unicorns" right now. 2019, 2020, and 2021 have had record fundraises and injections from PE/VC. Just because it's a unicorn doesn't mean it is the right unicorn.

How often are they receiving capital?
What is it being used for?Β 
Whens the last time they got capital, and current run rates?
What support are you getting?
What does "hyper growth mode" mean?
How is the current sales team doing?
Which product could you be more passionate about?
What network would be more interesting to sell to?

These are the questions you should be digging into.
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
Wow thank you! This was a well thought out post. I appreciate it!
CCP
Opinionated
+6
VP, Business Development
Pick the product/service and the boss that fits you best. The rest is often just noise when you're comparing two successful startups.Β 
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
So true. Managers make or break a job.Β 
Haast
Notorious Answer
+9
Account Executive
I tend to care more about who has invested more so than how much they invested. If you can get a role at a company backed by someone like Sutter hill or Sequoia then do so early if you can. Valuation and funding at early stage (pre-IPO or acq) are correlated to a degree and depend on actual financials. But even the best companies start small. Follow a good fund and soak up some equity, if you really believe in the product too thats a big bonus.Β 
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
Great pointers. I never thought about looking at who invested. Thanks for the advice
Justatitle
Politicker
+8
Senior AE
FWIW unless they’re offering shares of the company to you as an incentive to join the funding and valuation don’t matter. What does matter is what your are selling how their teams are performing and if you see yourself working thereΒ 
TheRealTommyCallahan
Arsonist
+6
Assistant to the Account Executive
Love this advice. Thanks!
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