They wonder how to utilize their experience and extensive skill sets best to create value in a different domain.
We contacted CA Ankush Bhutra, who has been in a similar situation.
After working for a decade in renowned firms such as EY, BMR, and Deloitte, where he specialized in Transfer Pricing and International Taxation, he sought to apply his expertise in a different industry.
He decided to join Blume Ventures, an Indian VC fund with an AUM of over $600 million, as a Financial Controller.
Before making this career move, Ankush considered the following vital factors and opportunities.
1. Play to your strengths
The first step is to identify your strengths and weaknesses. This applies to anyone considering joining a VC.
As I progressed in my career, accumulating 10-11 years of experience, I naturally played to my strengths.
Approximately 50-60% of my experience, primarily gained at BMR and Deloitte, revolved around dealing with Private Equity Funds. This involved fund setup, registration, resolving transaction queries, actively participating in transactions, and addressing investor inquiries.
The PE/VC industry was appealing, especially given my entrepreneurial mindset.
That is why I chose to join Blume Ventures as a Financial Controller in March 2022. I get to leverage my expertise at a VC firm while not having to go into uncharted territory by joining the finance team.
2. Love the “work” but can’t fit into the firm’s “culture”?
At times, you may enjoy the work.
However, you could face challenges fitting into the firm’s culture, or the firm doesn’t turn out to be a suitable cultural fit for you.
Having spent 11 years in a Big Four environment and going from highly structured and high-performance roles to a VC firm can take time to get used to.
VC firm exposes you to a completely different set of individuals. These individuals come from diverse backgrounds, possess varying qualifications, and exhibit distinct mannerisms.
Therefore, adaptability becomes an exceedingly important skill when considering a career shift. You cannot simply rely on “I think this is right so that I will proceed with it.”
3. Be open to feedback
Being open to feedback is essential when changing your career track.
When you enter a relatively different environment, you need someone to guide you and help you start on the right path.
To achieve this, it is crucial to have a receptive attitude toward feedback.
Your professional growth will likely stagnate if you are not open to feedback.
Looking at a VC Firm?
The hunger for knowledge, being intellectually active, and being open to evaluating various options while doing one particular thing in your job are significant in the VC industry.
- Developing a solid understanding of the venture capital industry
- Robust knowledge of the startup ecosystems
- Leveraging your network
- Having domain expertise and business acumen are essential in the VC space.
Remember, working in venture capital demands unwavering commitment and relentless hard work.
So, I suggest pursuing what truly aligns with your passion and capabilities.