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Ben: I figured I'd weigh in with a personal story. I graduated in 2003 from Princeton and serendipitously went to work for a startup in NYC ( straight out of school. My reasoning was not focused upon stability/stimulation, but upon discovery - I wanted exposure to marketing, finance, biz dev, software dev, etc and I could think of no better way to figure out what I loved than landing in a startup where I'd wear a ton of hats. Of course, in the process I implicity acknowledged a certain degree of instability and opportunity cost by not taking the standard investment banking/consulting route straight out of school (which I do believe would have generated an equal amount of stimulation but much less control, which I think is a key variable in job satisfaction). After a year and a half with DrJays, I learned that I loved startups, wanted to work with more business models and operate at a 30,000 foot level to see the lay of the land. So I pursued a job in VC and landed at Chrysalis Ventures (more stable, at least as stimulating, I would say). To address your question, I'm a firm believer that one should never live "a life deferred." In other words, don't choose a stable/uninteresting/no control job thinking you'll get a stable/interesting/lots of control job down the line. You're far more likely to stand out to a potential employer (an increasingly difficult task) if you've done something of interest and you can talk about it with enthusiasm than if you've "paid your dues," and you're far more likely to generate your own stable/interesting/lots of control job if you're used to thinking that way. In other words, forget stability. Define your own path (which is bound to be interesting) and if you're good, it's going to be stable. PS. I've enjoyed your blog for some time now and would say you're following my last paragraph to a tee ;) Best, Matt
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