From VC To a Startup : My Experience

Recently I switched my career from a prestigious Associate position at VC fund towards unpredictable and lower-paid startup job.

The fund where I worked closed and I spent 3 months figuring out what to do next, sending hundreds of applications for a new job in various fields and attending up to 5 interviews per day. For most of these positions I lacked  motivation and the only stimulus for me was high salary and the perspective of doing something meaningful after I earn some money. 

As an Associate I constantly analyzed lots of startups and gave them feedback whether their product is worth investing or not. Working at a VC side without operational experience from a startup could be very dangerous as you could get a feeling that you know more about startups than their founders and can do better.

In practice you may be stuck even with the simple idea because of lack of practical experience of being an entrepreneur.

When you are from a VC or advisor side you never make a real product, and if you’ve never done it before, you’ll never learn.

For me it was like watching interesting life passing by me, with all my ideas occasionally realized by someone else.

I decided that I want to do something more meaningful in my life, thus to become an entrepreneur.

How should one without a technical background, previous entrepreneurial experience and funding become a tech startup entrepreneur and build a product prototype?

I’ve gained my first practical experience of technical entrepreneurship from Stanford Technology Entrepreneurship online course with a Opportunity Assessment Project of making a first product prototype, creating team among global students and proving the sustainability of the idea.

As I already knew about the concept of Lean Entrepreneurship and various startup business models, practical assignments was of huge importance for me.

As a team lead it was very interesting for me to mobilize international team, inspire them about the idea and keep the process moving. 

Our concept of project got into the top-list for all of the assignments and received lots of positive feedback from potential customers.

I believe that entrepreneur should be passionate about the startup idea and it should change world for the best. As for me I’m passionate about helping other people, improving processes how people interact and spend their offline lives.

I like the idea of Social Entrepreneurship as it is something that brings a real value to people and its main goal is not to make money or serve corporations.

At the concept of we were thinking of how we can help people to find  a soulmate for an offline activity and facilitate the level of offline interactions. Nowadays most of the online people discovery solutions are not helping much to make offline actions, they rather try to retain you online, as a result people spend more and more time chatting online and lack the advantages of offline activities such as sports, going to lectures or movies.

From my perspective real collaboration with other people can enrich live dramatically and is a good motivation towards achieving goals. For example last year I missed going to downhill skiing because I didn’t find a company for this and was afraid doing it alone for the first time.

We miss lots of opportunities in our daily life because we don’t have the right company to do this.

And even though after some timу we decided not to pursue with the idea further, I never regretted the switch, and I know this is just a start.


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