Help me decide: Early Startup or Unicorn?

Feb 27, 2019 11 Comments

I have an offer from a seed stage startup but also have upcoming interviews with some unicorns (Lyft, Uber, Stripe, etc). Should I just take the startup offer, or go ahead with the unicorn interviews?

If I join the startup, I'd be the 3rd Engineer on the team. I think they have a very solid product and a lucrative market.

The startup is offering $190k salary, and 1.5% equity.
And we all know the rough TC range for the Unicorn...

I'd be taking ROUGHLY $100k/year hit from lack of RSUs if I join the startup. But the work sounds super interesting.

Please tell me what!

comments

Want to comment? LOG IN or SIGN UP
TOP 11 Comments
  • AIG / Product
    Raging

    AIG Product

    PRE
    Deloitte Digital
    BIO
    Counseling CxOs for AI-first strategy !
    Ragingmore
    Can't help you unless you provide:

    Provide your:
    --YoE, specialty
    -- founding team
    -- what drove you to the team
    -- is startup offer having any equity refresh?
    -- current TC
    -- what's the product space

    Uber (121b) Lyft (15b) and stripe are decacorns and not unicorns. All at overpriced equity based (private) valuations.

    Solid Product-market fit wins. Not just solid product.
    Feb 27, 2019 0
  • Robinhood hood
    190k salary as the 3rd engineer seems very high to me. Risk is relatively low.
    Feb 27, 2019 2
    • AIG / Product
      Raging

      AIG Product

      PRE
      Deloitte Digital
      BIO
      Counseling CxOs for AI-first strategy !
      Ragingmore
      Robinhood has no clue about what the word 'risk' means
      Feb 28, 2019
    • Robinhood hood
      There are other early-stage companies which offer much lower salary.
      Feb 28, 2019
  • DoorDash hiKu57
    Has the founder/CEO done this before? What is their experience?

    Does the early stage startup have customers? If not, why not?

    You should basically assume the startup will fail because almost all of them do, and then find reasons that can convince you there's a solid chance of success

    Take everything you hear from a founder with a grain of salt, because they're great at blowing smoke up people's asses and selling a vision. After all, it is their job
    Feb 28, 2019 1
    • Futurism elonsmusk
      This is excellent advice. Be careful and do due diligence on CEO/Founder's backgrounds. If leadership is poor, especially at an early stage, then your equity is worthless, much less what you're working on.
      Feb 28, 2019
  • Honeywell / Eng that1guy
    $100k is a huge hit. You better be over the moon a year later to have traded that.
    Also sorry to say but theres not 100% guarantee you get offer from unicorn. I personally would consider taking the offer, do the other interviews and then make my decision if I get another offer.
    Feb 27, 2019 0
  • Very much a personal choice
    Feb 28, 2019 0
  • Uber / Ops Hd63gf7
    I have the same decision to make. Except the startup just raised series B
    Feb 28, 2019 0
  • Oscar 🐨koala
    I wouldn’t quit for early stage startup....
    Feb 28, 2019 0
  • PayPal Stkoverflw
    I am in the same boat
    Feb 27, 2019 0

Salary
Comparison

    Real time salary information from verified employees