Growing Versatile Skillsets at a Startup

Name: Joseph Massey

Year: Junior

Major(s): Economics, History

CFS Class: Business Field Studies

Employer: Vous Vitamin

What I loved most about my job was how dynamic and adaptable it forced me to be every day.

Working at a startup requires you to understand and practice a wide range of skills. New challenges pop up very frequently, and therefore being ready to tackle a new one is a must. For example, I worked on a fascinating excel task where I compiled and cleaned a large number of surveys to optimize potential clients for the company. The task was tough, and I made a few errors along the way, but as I was finally close to completion and my mind was fully invested in the spreadsheet, some more pressing work ended up on my desk, and I had to leave my beloved spreadsheet alone for a couple of days. I had to switch from an incredibly quantitative, data driven task to two other tasks that required much more design dexterity and soft-skills. I soon learned that this was the reality of challenges that startup employees face. Even still, as an intern, I was afforded the luxury of only having to worry about one or two commitments at a time. Full time employees, though, have multiple time pressing pieces of work on their desks every day. Although the level of adaptability required was surprising, it was definitely for the better, forcing me to manage ever changing schedules, demands, and expectations. Moving forward, I definitely want to be in a working environment of this nature – staying on my toes and being ready for a new challenge every day is actually quite invigorating. Personally, I’ve discovered that I may find working for a larger institution where tasks are more repetitive less fulfilling. Working for smaller, hands on companies is what currently excites me moving forward in my career.

So much of what we learned in class was both applicable and fascinating, particularly with regards to artificial intelligence’s future in the healthcare industry.