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#DearMetro, Should I Choose A Big Or Small Company For My First Job?

Dear Metro,

I just finished my bachelor’s degree in October (woohoo, Octoberian!) and have been sending resumes to a number of companies via online job sites since then. Thankfully, I have been called to a number of job interviews. After a couple of tests and final interviews, I am down to the last two job offers. One company is a small startup company in Taguig, where the team is a small 10-man team all reporting directly to the CEO that’s just almost my age! The other company is a multinational corporation that would surely ring a bell in any conversation. Both companies offer me the same compensation and almost the same job descriptions. Which do you think should I choose?



Dear Ruby,

There are pros and cons to both options. We’ll give you the lowdown on what working for a small- and big-scale company comes with, and I want you to weigh the benefits and drawbacks and decide which one is more suited to your career choice.

Working for a big company, of course, has its perks. You’re sure to get a nice beautiful office, a set system where leaves and overtimes and benefits are all accounted for, and it sure looks pretty on your resume, especially if you’re a fresh graduate.

Big companies also means big staff (most of the time!). This means your set of responsibilities will be more tightly defined, and this is perfect for those who are looking for a structure in their work-life balance.

In terms of promotions, bigger companies tend to have larger infrastructures that span cities—or even countries! This means you have a big chance for internal mobility and can get sent from one office to another. And that arrangement can sound perfect or a downright pain in the behind, depending on the kind of person you are and the kind of stuff that you want to do.

Working for a small company, however, comes with a huge spectrum of perks and disadvantages. More often than not, expect to get overworked and underpaid in these companies because they need all the manpower and loyalty that they can get. Since you’re working in a small team, responsibilities will tend to overlap and you’ll find yourself doing stuff that you thought you didn’t sign up for.

While that sounds like a huge baggage, it comes with a big takeaway: experience. After working for a smaller company, you’ll feel like you can do anything since you’ve overcome the worst deadlines, delivered the most undermanned projects, and got the talking of the year from your boss every minute of your work day.

In fact, according to the 2017 Happiness Report by Aflac, nearly half of their respondents agree that they experience most—or all—of their happiness at work when they work for a small business. Respondents say that with small businesses, you get to feel and see the fruits of your labor than when you’re just a name in the huge employee roster.

Again, it all depends on what you’re looking for in your career. Evaluate your career goals and grab the opportunity based on what you think you can learn and take away from that company, instead of focusing on how it would look like on your CV.