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The Corporate Experience Conundrum Now is a good time to find great talent, but entrepreneurs ask, 'Should you hire workers from big companies?'

By Chris Penttila

Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

A few years ago, Affinergy was considering two applicants with extensive work experience at large companies. The Durham, N.C., biotech company decided to pass on both of them. "We couldn't get comfortable with their [inability] to roll up their sleeves," says Jonathan Gindes, 33, co-founder of the 28-employee company.

Whether or not to hire applicants with years of corporate experience is a tricky decision for entrepreneurs. On one hand, these people bring knowledge and contacts to your company. On the other hand, they might not thrive in an environment where decisions are made on the fly, job descriptions are broad and budgets are tight.

If you're one of the lucky entrepreneurs still hiring in this economy, you'll probably get resumes from people pouring out of large corporations. Now is a good time to snatch up this talent if you can, says Ed Newman, president of The Newman Group, a talent management consulting firm. "It's a fantastic time to be recruiting. There's access to people you might not otherwise have had access to."

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