7 ways to handle pressure while working in a startupAjay Chhangani
Being part of a startup is a steep learning curve. Limited access to manpower results in employees juggling between different roles and responsibilities. Also the fact that everyone is new at their jobs, makes the workplace chaotic yet exciting.
Flat pecking order, erratic work timings, multi-tasking and a lively work culture are some of the factors that make working at a startup enriching yet stressful. A startup employee should be ready to take multiple roles, making it easy for one to burn out. With these steps, one can gain peace of mind even while having several deadlines to meet.
- Breaks are necessary: One cannot stress enough upon the importance of break. Unfortunately, startups demand full attention in the initial phases of their inception, making it difficult to take breaks. One often gets into the zone and finds it taxing to snap out. Taking a break is crucial for productivity as it will induce some clarity into a chaotic thought process. Timely breaks help prepare one to confront problems head on.
- Learn the art of streamlining work: Overstretching is a common phenomenon, with lack of work power contributing to multitasking. Being proactive is beneficial for growth, but has its limits. Growing a business takes time. Therefore, it is pointless to add more and more work rendering it impossible to provide quality service. A smart move would be finishing what’s at hand and then take on extra work, according to the abilities of the said person. After all, Rome wasn’t built in a day and a successful business is no exception.
- Intelligent use of limited resources: Every well-established company has had its humble beginnings. A limited resource makes one think on the feet and come up with creative ways to utilise it. Similar to an open canvas, being part of a startup teaches one about financial insurances and resource management, at the same platform. Resource management is a foundation block on which growth of a startup is built.
- Learning the art of diligence: As teams in a startup are generally small, multitasking is the crux of automation. Yet, one tends to get swept away in the tide of burgeoning work pressure, along with deadlines looming behind. Thus, with time, one learns the important lesson in being diligent - delivering quality product in a timely fashion. The point to take home is that every contribution makes a difference in the end product and thus the sense of pride in ownership is high.
- Learn to trust your instincts: As you progress in the arena of startups, it is easy to get overworked from the plethora of inputs coming from various employees. This can be a cause of blockage in a goal oriented plan and hence cause unnecessary stress. One should know where to draw a line to prevent themselves from being frazzled through information overload. A chaos in workflow hampers productivity. Hence, making a decision based on calculated risk-taking is a skill that will prove valuable at this time.
- Have a creative mind: The oft-taken path maybe an easy way to get a quick response, but it can make work look like a chore. Inject fun into work, through innovative fresh alternatives to tried tested ways. This helps in flexibility of thought process, keeping it away from stress. There are radical ways of going about pounding the pavement to create awareness and spread the word. Alternative ideas make way for new opportunities to project success.
- Failures are a stepping stone to success: Every year, hordes of freshly graduates join startups in the hopes of contributing to the dynamic workforce. Yet, they crumble down at the first hint of failure. The key to working stress-free is to realise that failures are a common thing. Nine out of 10 startups fail, according to Fortune magazine. Joining a startup company entitles its employees to go through its ups and downs, collectively. Cowering at the sight of failure is a sign of instability. Failures are a great way of learning what works according to the demands. This helps strive for better results, keeping stress at bay.
It is often said that startups are of a volatile kind, yet the risk comes with innate knowledge. Being part of a team that’s builds a new product teaches you to be independent, flexible, resilient and make the most out of scarce resources. Also startups are rewarding for those who grew with them, holding on from day one. Being associated to a startup can add considerably to both professional as well as survival skills.
(Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of YourStory.)