It is a challenge for job seekers to work in an innovative business — ‘Isn’t it too risky to work in a startup? Do I have to work overtime every day?’ These are some fo the typical questions that may pop up in the job seeker’s’ mind.
As today’s my last day as an intern in archiparti, I’d like to share my fantastic experiences to anyone who’s interested in joining an HK tech-company.
Things that ONLY STARTUP can provide you
Currently studying in the UK, I’ve been interested in the marketing field for some while. It requires a decisive mind to tackle tasks, and rewards you with a great sense of accomplishment because the result of my every little contribution of the marketing plan is shown are shown straight away.
After several interviews in large organizations, I found that they weren’t as appealing as I thought. To be fair, those jobs sounded interesting but there were fewer opportunities. Because of the organizational structure, it seems they don’t offer you many directions or clues of your work when you’re only a fresher in the real business world. As an intern, we don’t care about wages that much. We value experience. We care about what practical tactics we can learn, or the ways how a company survives facing hundreds of cold-blood competitors.
Based on these reasons, the idea of working in a startup appeals to me. After some research and interviews, I decided to be a 3-month intern in archiparti. Actually, archiparti was supported by Swire properties Blueprint Accelerator, providing a platform for independent designers, project owners and large corporates. It definitely helped to reduce unnecessary conflicts between different parties. Within a few months, there are over 1200 designers under the wing of archiparti. Unlike the traditional design firms, archiparti would like to spread its completely brand-new concept to the international world.
Ready for my adventure? I’ll divide my working experiences into 3 stages.
The local team is of five people only when I joined. I was required to adapt to the rapid-changing environment and quickly set up feasible marketing strategies. No matter what I was required to do — from expanding the popularity of our website, managing all sorts of software, boosting social media performance, or even setting up a printer — I absorbed as much knowledge and experience as I could, alongside archiparti‘s helpful hands.
To ensure every member was familiar with the basic techniques and knowledge, archiparti provides self-learning tutorials such as SEO material to all new-comers. The first few days were very intensive with a lot of new ideas to pick up. However, through continuous practices and learning, it definitely helped me to find out my real interest and examined my abilities.
Once you get more familiar with the culture, operating flow and standard, congratulations, you’re in stage 2. Piles of works will be waiting for you, but don’t panic — they really won’t be your nightmares. As long as you make use of tactics you learned in Stage 1, you can produce high-quality and creative output easily. This is why it’s necessary to pay more effort on Stage 1.
archiparti values creativity. We think both project owners or designers deserve a more creative lifestyle. Therefore, our team is able to make use of our own creativity on the basis of trust and respect. For me, the video shooting experience was the best part of marketing. As archiparti was making a series of short introductory videos at the time, I was responsible for monitoring several professional camera crews and coordinating with project owners. This is true that sometimes I was lost, not knowing whether I was doing right or not. Luckily, archiparti allowed me to try on my own while giving me instructions and supports whenever I needed help. My colleagues also have chances to show their talents on things they passioned at. For example, people who love organizing and socializing can take the role of event organizing; those who enjoy designing help to create a fabulous graphics for social media. The right teammates do the right tasks.
With a steady growing of our company, I gradually took up more and more responsibilities, such as sharing experiences, giving instructions to the newcomers, assisting them to get familiar with the working environment and tasks, etc. I felt I’ve ‘grown up’ from someone who followed instructions to someone who set up manuals and guidelines for the others. Eventually, there are now around 20 team members in the current stage.
3 values startups are pursuing
Someone with courage and confident is the one a startup is searching for. Karbi Chan, the founder of archiparti, says an unwavering faith is all a startup team needs. Be curious, developing a self-learning habit, and most importantly, finding your own way. This is when your talent will be fully utilized. Always keep in mind that ‘Never Give Up, Yes I can.’
2. Eager to learn
The world is far more mystery than you think. In the modern digital world, we have no excuse for being passive in learning. A good leader assigns the right task to the right person instead of randomly giving out irrelevant jobs. What does a right job mean? It’s a task that initiates one’s self-learning and challenge-handling skills. In this way, both the company and individuals can make a great progress and improve. We’re here to keep pace with the company’s growth, aren’t we?
In the preliminary stage, shortage of manpower is a common problem. Multi-tasking is an ideal, or sometimes basic, technique if you want to work in a startup. It may seem hard, but it definitely worths your time and efforts to develop. When you look back your first day working in a startup, and find that you’ve grown to be more fearless and flexible — you’ve discovered your unexpected talent.
Our team’s energetic and smart. Every day at work, we’re like having fun more than working. Guess what — it’s the secret of our high productivity.
We work in a remote team on flexible hours, receiving messages from other helpful colleagues as always. When we look at the big picture, what our company is actually doing is to create invisible bonds among us. Through a well-coordinated system, ‘Nothing is Impossible’.
Besides archiparti, there are hundreds of startup in Hong Kong. For each startup, there are different management cultures behind the operation. Before applying, THINK TWICE about whether the jobs fulfill your expectation: do they have a mature government mechanism? What is the market prospect? There are many challenges that every startup encounters – high-rents, difficulty in attracting experienced employees, immature investing system, conservative market, among others. I hope to see more supports from various parties, so that enthusiastic young blood can join a brighter startup world in the future.
Brian Choi, Marketing and Design Intern