Most people, at some point have thought about whether it’s better to join an established company, a startup, or something in-between. For the well-established, bigger companies you’ll find better name recognition, in-house experts and scale. All of which can be great for your career. Fast growing companies like start-ups on the other hand are fast-paced, dynamic, collaborative and exciting. You’ll also get the opportunity to influence the company, the product and potentially the entire industry.
It’s not so black and white though, as there’s the possibility of working for a large yet high-growth company as well, which combines all benefits of both.
Here are the best reasons to pursue a career in a high-growth a company, along with some local examples.
Fast-growing companies tend to expand quicker than they can hire, which means as an employee you’ll be exposed to a constantly varying array of challenging projects. This gets you up to speed across a variety of areas extremely quickly, and since moving into new markets and product lines requires knowledgeable talent, fast-growing companies usually look to assign and promote internally when new opportunities come up.
This increased level of exposure and opportunity to take on more and more responsibility can position you in 2 years where it would have otherwise taken 3-5 years to achieve elsewhere.
A good example would be Hong Kong startup Prenetics, who raised $40 Million USD in 2015, rapidly grew to 100 people and continue to accelerate today. According to Peter, their CTO: “To be successful at this company, you need to work as a team, embrace change, challenge the status quo, and continually try to make things better”.
Ever felt like you were just another number under layer upon layer of middle management? Have you ever spoken to CEOs, shareholders or executive management? People can go for years without interacting with the key decision makers in their company. This lack of visibility often slows down careers and worse still, prevents people from picking up tips and skills from senior management needed to get to the next level.
When it comes to the high-growth arena however, information needs to move extremely fast between layers, so it’s not uncommon to interact with the executive team or even the CEO on a regular basis. These interactions are an invaluable way learn and put yourself on senior management’s radar.
Palo IT, a fast growing Technology company with a sizeable footprint in Hong Kong, pride themselves on a familial, meritocratic environment by using a ‘swarm’ organizational model. According to Justin, a developer at Palo IT, “I decided to join Palo IT after speaking to Stan, the CEO, which gave me a strong belief in the management team here.”
It’s not often that we can work on something that leads to lasting and meaningful change. Transforming a product, market, industry or even culture can be something that you can not only be proud of but can be a powerful and defining achievement that will be open doors for you in the future.
If you’re hoping to make an impact then a fast-growing company is a good choice, as it’s one of the few times you’ll get to build things from the ground up.
According to Arun, Foodpanda’s Commercial Director in Hong Kong, “You get to come into work every day in a startup atmosphere and see the impact you can make on a day to day basis”, “We went from no one knowing who we were, to now everybody on the street recognizing our name, and providing feedback”.
Fast growing companies need talent and passion to succeed so they quickly develop a culture of positive go-getters who are hungry to make a difference. You can feed off the energy and enthusiasm of your colleagues to stay motivated, as positive working cultures are more productive.
We spoke to M800, a rising telecommunications star based in Hong Kong who went from a startup to a large corporation in just a few years, keeping the culture that fueled their incredible growth to this day. Ben, M800’s Strategy and Digital Marketing Director said that “You don’t need to be really really good at your given field, more important to us is your attitude, ability to learn and absorb things and a sense of responsibility. With a good attitude, you can train yourself, and grow a lot”.
It’s no secret that fast-growing companies are demanding, less structured and often change priorities, however they can be extremely rewarding, both on a person level and for your long-term career – giving you exposure in a short time that would otherwise takes years somewhere else.
Here are some more fast-growing companies in Hong Kong that made it on our list: