Ever since I’m working at GO-JEK, which is one of the unicorn startup companies in Indonesia, I’ve always been asked by my friends and acquaintances, who are mostly fresh-grads, about the pros and cons as well as the ups and downs of working at a fast-growing startup.
Indeed, working at a startup is not always about its freedom of working hours and its endless challenges; there are countless things which are unique and probably only happen when you’re working in a startup.
Thus, I tried to gather some Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) about the perks of working at a startup company and tried to answer it together with my colleagues in GO-JEK;
1. “How does it feel to work in GO-JEK?”
I only have one word to answer this question; exciting. Working in a fast-growing startup feels like I must confront a never-ending adventure every single day, since I have to be familiar with sudden changes and its dynamic circumstances.
In GO-JEK, more often than not, your Plan A will less likely work and you have to be ready with your Plan B until Plan Z; means that you have to be used to uncertainty. If you want to work in a startup, make sure that you’re a person who likes to tackle new challenges and setbacks.
You need to always remember that a startup is a company which is always growing and developing each day to solve problems; a startup is not a comfort zone, unless your comfort zone is about confronting challenges.
2. “What kinds of people whom you’re working with?”
GO-TROOPS are the people who are fast, have countless new ideas, and acquire compassion. They are the kinds of people who always come up with new solutions, which are based on the data, and they deliver it with empathy.
They know exactly that their ideas might not always work as planned, so they will always be open to feedback and critics to their ideas before it will be implemented. GO-TROOPS are also fearless to make mistakes as they understand that making mistakes and trying to fix it is part of their learning process.
One thing about GO-TROOPS which I adore the most is their passion. In GO-JEK, you will most likely work with passionate people who are dedicated and hard working. Even though they are allowed to work remotely and could come to the office whenever they want, they will always try their best to finish the tasks before the deadlines; GO-TROOPS are treated as responsible adults.
3. “How is the working environment?”
Ever since I’m working at GO-JEK, now I understand the meaning of work-life balance, especially for me who is a millennial fresh-graduate. In my previous workplace, I had to work together with the people who are at least 20 years older than me. Thus, every time I went home after work, I always made time to meet my peers for the sake of having a social life.
In GO-JEK, most of the times, I’m working with the people who are 20–35 years old (my team leader is even only a year older than me!) and it makes my social life-need being fulfilled in the workplace.
Not only about the people in it, I think GO-JEK office was designed as a ‘playground’ rather than a place to work. The office is colorful and there is no cubicle at all as you can collaborate and brainstorm with literally anyone who sits together with you at the table.
There is a gym room at the office, a GO-PLAY room, several sleeping rooms, and the pantries are cozy enough for you if you’re bored to work at your table; GO-JEK’s working environment is ideal for you who have tons of creative ideas and innovations.
4. “How does GO-JEK develop the skill of their employees?”
In GO-JEK, we believe in the power of knowledge sharing. Thus, not only for the GO-TROOPS, GO-JEK has some learning platforms to develop people’s hard and soft skills. Right now, GO-JEK has an online learning platform which is called the GO-LEARN videos. Those videos are featuring some of our inspiring GO-TROOPS who were sharing the skills which they’re the experts of the skills.
Other than GO-LEARN videos, GO-JEK also has the GO-TALK session, which is an offline learning platform and could be accessed by everyone. GO-TALK is a two-hour session of knowledge sharing by our GO-TROOPS who are experts in the particular fields.
In summary, GO-JEK develops our skills through knowledge sharing. GO-JEK envision a world where everybody has access to a world-class learning experience as GO-JEK has the mission to share knowledge, provoke thought, and prepare the people to be ready for embracing the future.
5. “Since GO-JEK is a tech-company, do you need to be the expert in engineering to work there?”
No, but you need to have the curiosity to learn new things, especially about technology, and the business fields. It depends on your position too; if you’re working in the tech-division, yes, of course, you need to be the expert on it, for the engineering team is one of the crucial divisions in a startup.
But, GO-JEK is not only about its engineering team. We are a bunch of diverse talents who are working and collaborating with each other and you have infinite opportunities to explore as much knowledge as possible.
In GO-JEK, you can speak your mind and ideas as long as you could communicate it with purpose. In other words, being the expert in a particular field is crucial, but the most important thing in GO-JEK is you’re able to learn new things and adapt to changes quickly; we need people who are strong-agile learners.
I do believe that there is no such thing as an ideal job; wherever we’re working on, being a hard-working person is the key to reach your own success story. Thus, no matter where you’re working on right now, focus to be the best version of yourself, instead of comparing your work life with anyone in your surroundings.
At the end of the day, you are the master of your own life; whatever life offers you, if you could control yourself to adapt and ‘bounce back’, you will be okay wherever you are working at.