Why I Turned Down a Six-Figure Salary in Big Tech to Stay at a Five-Person Startup

Two years out of coding bootcamp and I had an incredible offer from one of the world’s most highly-regarded tech companies… and I declined it.

Annie 🦄⚡️
15 min readDec 28, 2021


Painted arrows on wood facing different directions
Photo by Max Kleinen on Unsplash

On paper, it was the dream job. Hell, it would have been the most “adult” job I’d ever had in my life so far. Stocks, bonuses, incredible benefits, prestige and an incredible all-remote team. It would absolutely sky-rocket my career; the name on my resume would open doors, opportunities and a path to further success. I would never have to worry about how to pay my bills again.

It took me six interviews and a take-home project to get this offer. So why did I decline it?

To turn down a role like this was no small decision, especially considering the financial implications. Personal anecdotes from others helped me to make my decision and I wanted to share my story and process too.

How it started

Who am I?

Hi, I’m Annie. I’m an Australian multi-disciplinary designer who graduated from a Canadian front-end development bootcamp in July 2019. I was also an English instructor…



Annie 🦄⚡️

Designer // Developer | ENFP-T ♐ | 🌏 Traveller | Optimist 🥛 | Suffers from FOMO & analysis-paralysis