1. At first, we till up the ground, plant seeds, and water. This represents the hard work for which we may not see much of a return in the early phases of our career, like getting a university degree, working more than one job, putting in extra hours, all during which time you are raising children, being involved with volunteer activities, friends, etc. This is a mentally and physically exhausting phase.
2. We start to see things grow and some of the crops have fruit. Our hard work is beginning to pay off, but there is still some instability and insecurity with our career.
3. We reap even more of the benefits of all our hard work. We are making a really good wage and a more comfortable station in life, yet it is easy to get too comfortable here and start to slack off or coast.
4. We make it to retirement or the waning years where we can give more of our time to volunteering as opposed to earlier because now we have more financial wealth.
Starting to work for a large company first is like growing up in a small town and never traveling outside the city limits, while the latter option is like immersing yourself in many foreign cultures by spending time in those countries around the world. It’s not that the first option is necessarily bad, but it does limit understanding and experience in exchange for perceived income stability. And if we want to work for a larger, established company later in our career, then we will be better prepared with a more robust skill set and a better understanding of ourselves in order to tackle those challenges more effectively. With all of that said, some larger and some smaller organizations will grow, and there is no right or wrong answer 100% of the time. The key is that our current economic period will be punctuated by higher perceived risk when the actual risk may be lesser, so choose the size of company wisely based on your personal situation.
For more career advice, check out Becoming Generation Flux available in Audiobook, eBook, or Paperback.