When I worked for a large corporation I was convinced that it was the best way to get ahead in my professional career. Years later I worked for a much smaller business, and was then convinced that a smaller organization was definitely best for me. It is only now that I look back on both of those experiences and realize that there really is no definite answer.
I realized over time that there are many positives and negatives as well as many drawbacks to both. It all comes down to your personal preference and where you feel the most comfortable.
I loved the feeling of prestige when I worked for a large multinational company. It had a fantastic and respected name in the business world, and I imagined people would think to themselves, "Wow, she works for so and so... that's amazing." In reality, however, I found that I was just another number amongst the hundreds of people I worked with. Although the multinational offered large resources, growth opportunity, greater benefits and a chance to travel, I continuously felt like a small fish in a big pond. The opportunities were there to succeed, but how long was that going to take?
The small company on the other hand had a far friendlier feel to it. I found that my co-workers were not constantly competing with each other on a day to day basis by trying to get ahead. I enjoyed having several roles to fulfill and looked forward to the fact that each day was different than the next. Instead of feeling like the small fish in the big pond, I felt that I was the big fish in the small pond and that my contributions were greatly valued. With less hierarchy and fewer processes, I felt that less time was wasted during the day. On the negative side, this small business was unable to offer the many perks and benefits that were available when working for a larger company.
Overall, you need to find the right niche for you. If you enjoy the smaller working environment where your co-workers are family-like and your schedule is much more flexible with less hierarchy, a smaller company could very well be the vehicle that serves you best. If you enjoy great benefits, opportunities to grow and a diverse culture, a larger organization could be right for you.
Laura is the Marketing Coordinator for RedStarResume, a business that provides resume and cover letter writing services for students, graduates and young professionals.