If you’re interested in working for a startup either during or after your studies, the great news is that they’re looking for a bright spark just like you! But seeking a job at a smaller, younger company can be a very different process. Most startups want people with some practical skills or experience who can contribute from day one. Whether on-the-job or in a classroom, it’s a good idea to invest time in gaining the skills that startups want so that you have the best chance possible of joining your dream team. Below are some helpful resources.
Learning to code
Not everyone needs to be able to code at a startup, but for those with less technical backgrounds it can be helpful to be familiar with how modern programming gets done. If you’re considering learning to code, we recommend reading these:
- Businessweek – Companies Want MBAs Who Can Code
- Harvard Business Review – Should MBAs Learn to Code?
If you’re ready to take the plunge, here are some of our favorite resources for getting started:
Growth hacking is a term used to describe how many startups approach marketing today. Growth hackers focus on low-cost and innovative alternatives to traditional marketing to sell products and gain exposure, often by using techniques such as search engine optimization (SEO), web analtics, content marketing and A/B testing.
To learn more, visit these resources:
- Kissmetrics blog: Learn Growth Hacking: 35 Resources to Help You Become a Growth Hacker
- Quicksprout: The Definitive Guide to Growth Hacking
Product management is another common startup role that can mean different things depending on who you are speaking to. Generally speaking, however, product managers are responsible for delivering new products or bringing about product improvements throughout a product’s lifecycle. Often described as “mini-CEOs”, product managers will possess some mix of technical, business and user experience expertise. Learn more here:
- What Exactly is a Product Manager? – Martin Eriksson
- Product Management 101 for Startups
- Quora blog on “What great product managers do”
UC Berkeley Fellowships
Mayfield Fellows Program The Mayfield Fellows Program is a year-long program at the UC at Berkeley. It is available to graduate students from the Haas Business School, College of Engineering, and School of Information Management. The program provides a broad entrepreneurship experience by combining ongoing mentoring with faculty, company executives, and venture capitalists and Silicon Valley networking activities. The main component of the program is a 12 week internship in a Mayfield-funded technology startup company or one of the portfolio companies of another top-tier venture capital firm associated with the program.
Haas Venture Fellows
Interested in teaming up with startups as a VC? Haas Venture Fellows is a select group of Berkeley MBA students who receive hands-on experience in the venture capital industry by undertaking project work for prominent Bay Area venture capital firms. The group develops relationships with general partners at VC firms, agrees on projects to undertake, and delivers results directly to the venture capital firm. The group also maintains a network of UC Berkeley alumni working in the venture capital industry and contacts to entrepreneurship initiatives across UC Berkeley.
Some Courses @ UC Berkeley
- 290E.1 – Innovation Strategies for Emerging Technologies
- 290N.1 – Managing the New Product Development Process
- 295B.1 – Venture Capital & Private Equity
- 295I.1 – Entrepreneurship Workshop for Start-Ups
- 295T.1 – Startup LabMBA295T.2 – Social Lean Launchpad
- 290A-1 – Introduction to Management of Technology
- 290K-1 – Innovation in Services and Business Models
- 290T-2 – Imagining Alternative Futures
- 292N-1 – Social Entrepreneurship
- 295A-1 – Entrepreneurship
- 295C-1 – Opportunity Recognition: Technology and Entrepreneurship in Silicon Valley
- 295D-1 – New Venture Finance
- 295I-1 – Entrepreneurship Workshop for Start-Ups
- 295T-1 – The Lean Launchpad