Pros and Cons of Working for A Small or Big Company

Pros and Cons of Working for A Small or Big Company

Virtually every candidate wants to work for a big company. After all, the benefits are enormous and hard to resist. Yet, not everything is rosy in large corporations. There are indeed pros and cons of working for a small company as well as a big company.

Do you know that a small company might just be the best place for you to work right now? If you are still in doubt, see the pros and cons of working for a small or big company.


Pros of working for a small company

You are involved in the decision-making.

While many don’t realize it in the early stages, you have the power to influence the course of the organization more than you know. Small companies are structured in a way that there is direct access to the owner or CEO.

Also, some small companies only have one person in each department while the business owner(s) oversee the business. During meetings, you will be able to bring ideas that could revolutionize the company. Also, the owner will involve you in making vital decisions for the future of the company.

Learn multiple roles.

Small companies only have a few employees carrying out their duties to support the organization. This means that it is not uncommon for an employee to take on multiple responsibilities. By doing this, employees gain knowledge that goes beyond their primary roles. Right from the start, a new employee learns multiple tasks.

This accumulation of knowledge favours your CV. It shows that you are capable of more than just your primary responsibility. Dabbling in different roles opens people up to opportunities in other fields. Also, switching careers becomes more feasible and seamless when you learn multiple roles.

Your impact is felt.

When you work for a small company, you get the feeling that you are making an impact. Employees in small firms usually play significant roles in the company. If one employee is not performing well, the whole company will most likely feel the impact. In the same way, when an employee makes waves in their duties, it easily reflects directly on the whole company.

This encourages employees to keep performing better and also makes them aware of how bad performances could adversely affect the company. In a small company, everyone notices when a colleague doesn’t show up to work. Likewise, the absence of an employee is easily felt.

Forming better partnerships.

Working in a small company is nothing short of being with family. Since small companies only have a handful of employees working together, they have no reason to occupy large office space. Thus, it is normal to have daily conversations –no matter how little- with colleagues.

It helps to form better partnerships and new friendships. Compared to big company staff, small company employees form a stronger unit that goes beyond official matters.

Better learning opportunities.

Small companies offer various learning opportunities to their employees. Firstly, most people who learn on the job learn faster in small companies. This is because they will have responsibilities that will enable them to learn on the job. Also, they will be working closely with their superior or the CEO who will share deeper knowledge of the business with them.

Get noticed.

If you want to work where your good work will seldom go unnoticed, try small companies. Due to the small number of employees available at small firms, it is easy for everyone to know each other.

Not only will your colleagues recognize you, but your bosses will also know you by name. You also have access to the top management. That way, it is quite easy to shine especially when you are instrumental in the organization’s success.


Cons of working for a small company

You do multiple people’s jobs.

Even though a lot has been said about the advantage of working in a small unit, not everyone can cope with it. When you work for a small company, be ready to do more than what you signed up for. In fact, don’t be surprised to find yourself doing something two or three people should be doing. This can become too much to handle for some employees who risk becoming a Jack of all trades.

Not enough competition.

When you work for a small company, there is not much to aim at. While big companies have different levels an employee can climb, small companies don’t.

Also, the level of competition in a small company is low. Healthy competition brings the best out of employees and makes everyone raise their game. Thus, the lack of competition in virtually every department allows for complacency.

Limited resources to work with.

Small companies don’t have the financial capacity big companies have. To survive, small companies purchase tools and other resources of lesser quality. This makes the available resources for workers limited.

Expect to have only a few tools to work with and make up for the rest somehow. This is why employees who previously worked for large corporations find it difficult to cope in the early stages.

Low or average salary.

In reality, no ambitious candidate wishes to work for a company that pays them less than their counterparts elsewhere. However, this is the reality of working for a small firm. The salary is usually low or average.

The benefits employees in a small firm receive are limited. In some cases, small businesses can’t afford to offer their employees any benefits at all.

Less training and exposure.

Small companies don’t have the luxury of offering expensive training and extensive coaching to their employees. They can barely afford to pay salaries and maintain the office- spending on training is not a priority. This limits employees to skills they either had before getting the job or the ones they acquired on the job.

Likewise, small companies remain small because of the class of clientele they have. As a result, networking becomes challenging even for employees.

Fewer opportunities.

Working for a small company offers few opportunities for its employees. While big organizations provide employees with opportunities to further their careers or education, small companies can’t. Small company employees don’t get funding for personal projects even if it is to advance their career.

Likewise, employees of small companies hardly get paid leaves or long vacations like big companies because they don’t have the funds. Small companies struggle when their employees are going on leave because they don’t have enough people to fill the position.

Getting a promotion in a small company is not as big a deal as in large corporations. Some small companies don’t bother promoting staff because there is no higher level to reach. When some small companies do promote staff, it doesn’t come with a raise.


Pros of working for a big company

Division of labour.

If you want to work for a company that will not give you more responsibilities than what was stated in the job description, it’s a big company. Large corporations make life easier for their employees by supplying them with all the help they need.

In a big company, they practice division of labour to a high degree. Each department has a hierarchy with senior and junior colleagues carrying out separate tasks. It is not uncommon to find workers in small firms performing duties that a big company would share between at least two staff.

This helps workers to focus on their tasks and produce better quality results. When three people do a job that one person elsewhere would do, they conclude it faster and more satisfactorily.

Decent to a high salary.

Probably the most significant advantage of working for a big company is the salary. The average large corporation pays their workers more than what smaller firms can afford. This is why many candidates give their all to work for big companies.

The reassuring thing is that these companies have the resources to maintain the salary structure and even improve on it. Since most big companies are already established with an already large clientele, you are almost certain that your paycheck will always come.

Besides the basic salary, other benefits that come with working for a big company are also attractive. From HMO to paid vacations, working for a big company comes with benefits that ultimately elevate your standard of living.

Great exposure.

When you work for a big company, the spectacle is always big. It opens up a world of possibilities and exposes you to more experiences and influences in the industry.

Big companies use every opportunity they have to put their business at the forefront. For this reason, big companies either organize events or accept invites to events. These events usually draw the attention of the big names in different sectors, including investors. It enables employees to make influential connections and networks for both individual and organizational benefits.


Cons of working for a big company

It is difficult to shine.

When it comes to showing what you’re made of, working in a big company doesn’t help much. Since there are many other employees like you, you will compete just to get noticed. Also, due to the division of labour, each employee’s work may have to go through a departmental manager. These processes don’t make tracking employees’ impact easy.

There is usually an emphasis on teamwork. You might end up being recognized as part of a team. This would mean that your best results would be credited to the team and not you.

Furthermore, your bosses hardly know you. Don’t be offended when your boss asks you what your name is every time he or she sees you. There are just too many of you around.

You stick to one type of responsibility.

You are primarily responsible for one or two tasks while many other employees are handling the rest. This comes with its demerit.

Some of those who work for large corporations hardly grow and are rarely versatile. This is because they might only have to do one type of task throughout their time there. If you’re not careful, you may not know what other departments do.

The salary comes with much pressure to deliver.

Big companies want to get richer and reduce costs of operations at all costs. For this to happen, employees must do whatever they must to get the job done. Many big company employees are under pressure to perform and earn what they make.

For this reason, employees work late and sometimes take their office tasks home to complete. The pressure drives many into depression or vices that are unethical and career-threatening.

Replacing you is easy.

The irony of working for a big company is that although it is difficult to get in, replacing you is easy. No one wants to lose their job, but the likelihood is higher in a large company.

Indeed, there are thousands of candidates applying for an employee’s role in a big organization. Everyone knows it and it sometimes puts some employees on edge.

Some of the tools you mastered might become useless.

Large corporations invest heavily in their resources to offer superior, personalized services to their customers. This involves the purchase of customized equipment and software, among others. Thus, the biggest corporations rarely use common applications or tools which can harm employees.

As a new employee, the company will train you on how to use their facilities and tools. If nearly all these tools are exclusive to the company, the knowledge would become almost useless when you leave.


Final thoughts

Contrary to what most people think, working for a big company is not always better than working for a small firm. Both settings have their merits and demerits- it depends on your goal as a professional.

In small companies, more responsibilities mean that an employee will most likely become versatile. Also, small companies are the best for beginners because it literally means starting from the bottom. Working for a small company means that you will be earning much less than what your performances warrant.

On the other hand, working for a big company comes with unlimited benefits. The opportunities big companies provide, along with the resources you will be working with, are every professional’s dream. However, when the feeling of getting replaced looms, employees can enter into an unhealthy competition to save their jobs in big companies.

Have you worked for both sets of companies? Let us know about your experiences in the comments section below.


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