Insight into 4 local startup jobs: Megan Milan

March 31, 2014

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Megan Milan is the Marketing Coordinator for ShipCompliant. Prior to joining the startup, she was a Business Specialist at Apple.

1. What type of opportunities have you been able to take advantage of by working for a startup? Can you talk about the medley of unexpected responsibilities that you've dabbled in?

Since I’ve been with ShipCompliant, I have learned a ton! I've dabbled in exciting and unexpected responsibilities, including organizing and executing a charitable event for Boulder flood victims, video directing and developing a certification program for our software. My marketing experience has expanded- I've researched and implementated new software for use in house, led content creation and management for our website and product (SaaS) and tried my hand at script writing.

2. How are you rewarded for hard work?

ShipCompliant recognizes our work in a couple different ways. If you notice someone doing a great job and embodying our core values (Feel It, Own It, Shape It, Crush It), you can donate tokens that can be cashed in for some great experiences from our friends at Enjoywishlist. We also call out personal and company wins every Friday during a short company meeting. Most notably, we were rewarded for great work by a trip to Mexico.

My work is inspired by the people who surround me. I once heard a philosophy that if you work to get 1% better at something each day, by the end of 100 days you will be 100% better at whatever it is you are working on.

3. Since everyone shares a medley of responsibilities, how do the various divisions synchronize?

Our team collaborates and works together by utilizing google docs. If the executives need to make some big decisions, they do so offsite to remained focused. Most teams within the office meet on a weekly basis and then at the beginning of every quarter we have a big company meeting to outline how the next quarter will look and who will work together. Our office has plenty of smaller conference rooms so groups of people can get together and brainstorm with a whiteboard.

3. How is it transitioning from a structured position to a more flexibile work environment?

The flexibility and work environment is something that takes a bit of getting used to. At Apple there was so much structure in the day to day and what was expected of you was well known by all. This provided a great environment to learn the basics and then build on your knowledge because you knew how to structure your day.

When I started at ShipCompliant, I had to take into consideration the “culture shock” of a new job and the reality that tomorrow may look very different than today. If you are thinking of moving from a corporate work environment to a startup, keep in mind that your greatest challenge may be overcoming a lack of structure. Now this is something I have grown accustom to and I greet everyday with a simile. After all, do you ever really know what the world will throw your way?

5. What attracted you to making the change into the startup world?

I was attracted to ShipCompliant because they make software to help people in the wine industry by removing barriers that would otherwise inhibit business. This was attractive because my mom owned a winery and made wine professionally when I was in high school. To know that this company was helping people like my mom made the leap from corporate to start up a lot more manageable.

The community in the startup world is exciting because we all want to see each other succeed, and will help each other along the way. In the past, Boulder Startup Week was something that I could participate in but mostly as an outsider looking in. This year, I will be wearing my ShipCompliant T-Shirt and participating in as many events possible as a member of the community. We are fueled by passion, and being able to see the how that manifests inspires me everyday.  

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