As my Linkedin profile proudly shows I’ve recently changed employer, it’s only my 4th but it’s the smallest by far, with the days of 1000’s of colleagues being replace by 10’s. Random chance has seen my last 20 years spent at companies about the same, large, size but I’ve often looked at the smaller sizes and at start-ups and thought ‘what if‘.
A couple of years ago I set up a team and office from nothing in a new location – that gave me the startup taste but was still within the structure, and with the backing, of that large parent and hastened the need to answer the ‘what if‘.
8 weeks in I’ve found time to reflect on the change. I’ve continued in the data space so it was only fitting that I use the 3Vs of big data describe the changes and contrasts.
The obvious thing is that there’s a lot less of pretty much everything. Less people is a pretty obvious one when the whole company comes out for your welcome lunch, but the benefits of much easier and better communication coupled to an absence of the politics that plagues so many companies is just as obvious and certainly welcome. There’s no need for multiple rules and policies when one, “don’t be a dick” (I paraphrase!) will suffice. Certainly for me less is more.
Some things are constant though – still same size bottles of beer in the beer fridge!
In this case it’s partly due to the consultancy side of the DataShed but there’s a lot more variety of work to get involved in and rather than hearing about it from afar you are expected to be involved as well. Small companies haven’t had the need to sprout appendages like, HR, Procurement, Networks teams etc so if you want anything done in those ares you need to do it yourself – usually with less effort and time and much less friction from poor systems and forms into the bargain as well. Jumping onto amazon prime is a much better experience that most companies procurement processes that’s for sure.
Is where the most welcome change is observed, small really does lend itself to being nimble with quick and easy decision making standing out. On my third day the sim for my phone still hadn’t arrived, Day 4 saw a sim from the new provider – yep, the decision to change provider had been made and followed through in the same day.
Is it for me? It’s not for everyone, small means no hiding, no coasting, no mediocracy. But if like me you’ve been debating a likewise change all I can say is do it – small firms hire carefully, if they chose you you’ll fit and you’ll thrive!
The 3V’s of data might be a little traditional for some so as a bonus here’s the missing 2
V Veracity Is easy, there’s no nonsense.
V Value is perhaps stretching the analogy a little to far but it’s also easy, it’s what working at the DataShed adds.