I recently started a job at a startup. This means I am working longer hours for less pay than at my last job (which was an established company). A big part of the reason I accepted the job was the equity that was promised-- the hope is that with some luck and a lot of hard work, it will pay off in the end.
Now, after a month of working here, the CEO is still delaying the options grant paperwork. He has been promising it 'in the next few days' since before I started. He says that it will be backdated to my start date, so the vesting schedule will start then. This all seems like it should be fine, and work out in the end, assuming the paperwork comes in before the next time the value of the shares goes up (which would have tax implications).
So, I want to be accommodating to all these delays, and just go with the flow, since once we work this out, I hope to be with this company for several years, so I want to build a good relationship with everyone. On the other hand, if I am being jerked around and they are not going to give me what was promised in the offer, then I should probably figure that out sooner than later.
To clarify, my offer letter did specify (in writing) how many options I would be given (and what percentage of the company they would represent), but it did not specify the exact timing. In subsequent emails and verbal conversations, the CEO said that the final options grant paperwork would be ready 'in the next few days'.
How long should I wait for promised equity at a startup, and how can I find out where I stand?