Many Workers Wary of Joining Start-Ups

Before investors became skittish about high-tech start-up companies, American workers already were feeling reluctant to go and work for them, according to a survey released last week.

Nearly 43% of the 700 workers surveyed said they would not be interested in working for the low pay and stock options typically offered by pre-initial public offering firms, and another 44% said they would consider a start-up only if they received a "competitive salary," according to the survey. Only 6% said they would accept a low salary in exchange for the potential wealth that stock options represent.

Still, about 44% of those who said they wouldn't work for a start-up said they still would be interested in investing in one. But that was before recent volatility in the stock market slashed the value of many Internet firms by more than half and forced dozens of start-ups to postpone their IPOs. The survey was conducted in late February by Chicago-based Market Facts Inc. and was commissioned by BridgeGate, a technology recruiter based in Irvine.

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