The Six People You’ll Work with at a Startup
The Sales Guy that Peaked in College
Every startup has their Brad or Chad. This guy crushes cold calls during the week and cold Natty Lights on the weekend. He hits his numbers in the office and at the gym. Despite always claiming that he’s got “the sauce,” he still eats plain, unseasoned chicken breast for lunch every day. He’s probably the reason that an order of company-branded bro tanks just showed up on the door step. While this guy is the definition of extra, he is likely the one closing deals for the company, so keep him on your good side.
The Person that is Never in the Office
Don’t let their presence in the #general Slack channel fool you, you will never meet this person. Whenever you ask about them people will say “Oh I think they came to the last company retreat” or “They’ve been remote since their daughter was born.” You will continue to wonder if the person is real after they’ve rescheduled your call for the 3rd time this month, but just trust the process. As long as the next feature gets shipped in time, it doesn’t matter if Alexa from Development is a real person or another AI assistant.
The Person that Never Leaves the Office
You swear you saw this person unroll a sleeping bag from the supply closet last week and hunker down for the night under their standing desk (who sits these days?) Sure this person might sustain themselves completely on leftovers from catered lunches and Soylent from the break room, but that’s because they are a W-O-R-K-A-H-O-L-I-C. This person cares more about the company than the founders themselves, and is married to their career. Hinge dinner dates or happy hours after work? Forget it. Despite not being able to keep their eyes open due to extreme sleep deprivation, this person has their eyes on the prize. Try to get to know this person if they give you the time —they are a force to be reckoned with.
Let’s be honest. You’re not really sure why the company is paying an intern if they couldn’t pay the AWS bill last month. This twenty-something doesn’t really know what they’re doing 90% of the time and probably still thinks that “scrum” is something NSFW. Approach them with caution, as they are easily spooked and known to Tweet about anything that happens to them. That said, gaining the intern’s trust can be worth the risk, as you can then convince them to automate your Excel spreadsheet or retrieve your daily latte via eScooter.
The Person in Charge of Ordering the LaCroix
If you’ve learned anything working at a startup, it’s that LaCroix runs through the veins of every millennial employee. Unfortunately, that means that you also rely on God’s carbonated nectar to get by every morning while you intermittently fast. So, it is vital that you befriend whomever handles the supply to ensure that your precious Pamplemousse or Passionfruit stays stocked. This person relishes the power they get from controlling the company’s productivity through orders of LaCroix, Red Bull, coffee and other liquid refreshments, so you’ll have to be on your A-game. Make a friend in the right place, and you’ll always be satisfied ;)
The Office Dog
The only guy in the office that shits on the clock more than you do. While at first this guy may seem like just another manager barking at you while you’re on your “Pomodoro break”, he will soon become the only reason that you can get yourself out of bed on a Monday. He smells better than the engineers and won’t talk to you when you have your AirPods in, so what more could you want? Make sure to give him a treat every now and then — he’s probably sick of eating Justin’s Almond Butter and kale chips from the break room by this point.
- All of these characters are strictly fictional and definitely were not inspired by any co-workers over the years ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
More where this came from
This story is published in Noteworthy, where thousands come every day to learn about the people & ideas shaping the products we love.
Follow our publication to see more product & design stories featured by the Journal team.