Leaving IB to start my own business?

Hi all,

Being in IB is nice, the paycheck is solid, you meet people, work a “prestigious” job, but I do not see myself getting rich this way.

Going into PE, then MBA and hoping carry realizes does not seem promising to me either.

During college I worked on construction and property management, I developed some relationships and learned stuff. 

I was thinking of starting mu business in PM, contracting and becoming a real estate agent. However, I am afraid if I suck I left a high paying job for nothing. 

Am I able to come back to IB if I maintain my relationships? 

Do you know anyone who took the leap of faith and didn’t stick to the classic corporate route?

any caveats? Thank you

Hey there,

It's great to see you're considering different paths. It's not uncommon for folks in IB to consider starting their own ventures. In fact, I know of a few who left IB to start their own companies. One of them even started a consulting company with two friends, one also ex-IB and one ex-MBB. They've had a pretty wild ride since then, working with a variety of interesting clients, from large venture-funded software startups to rapidly expanding cannabis companies.

In addition to consulting, they also developed a web app that significantly expedites the financial modeling and valuation process for M&A transactions while eliminating errors. They had been playing around with the idea of this product for several years, and leaving IB finally gave them the time to dive in and build something valuable.

As for your question about returning to IB, maintaining relationships is definitely key. The finance world is smaller than you think, and having a strong network can open doors if you decide to return.

As for taking the leap of faith, it's definitely a trend nowadays. Many are seeking instant success and are not afraid to leave the traditional corporate route. However, remember that starting your own business also comes with its own set of challenges and risks. It's not necessarily instant success.

In the end, it's all about what makes you happy and fulfilled. If you're passionate about property management and real estate, that could be a great path for you. Just make sure to do your research, plan carefully, and be prepared for the ups and downs of entrepreneurship. Good luck!

Sources: Q&A: Left IB to Start My Own Company, Leaving IB/PE to start your own start-up?

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Starting a business is a huge risk, but it seems like you've already addressed that in your post and you seem willing to stomach it. What I can say is that these careers will always be here, and if you fail you can always get an mba and figure things out from there. However, it seems like what you want is to get stupid rich, and realistically the only way to do that is to start or be early in a startup/business. I would say if you keep at it you can and should succeed, so why not throw caution into the wind. Life is only so long

Planning the same thing - looking to quit sometime in 1H:24 and start my own healthcare business. Let me ask you - what are your motivations for starting a business, other than getting rich? 

When you mentioned healthcare business - wouldn't you need a license to own a medical practice?

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I'd make sure you ahve a solid warchest (9+ months of expenses) saved up before you make the switch. IB provides a great opportunity to supercharge your savings at a young age. The key thing for starting your own business is who you know that has done it before in your similar industry / subvertical and what advice can they give you. Example - yes, IB isn't for me long term and I want to create generational wealth for the future kiddos. My buddy and I want to start a real estate fund. I have experience with acquisition modeling, real estate terms, debt & cash flow modeling, etc., and he works as a property manager and knows how to manage real estate. His dad runs a real estate fund, so he knows how to look at investment opportunities. I knew I wanted to do something, and I found the people that can compliment my skillset with theirs to deliver a (hopefully) attractive exit option for myself. I'm going to ease into it and not just quit right away, but start with small investments for a few years and build on that more and more.  

Cheers and best of luck! 

I'd say give it a go. I assume you have a fair bit of cash saved up so you're not exactly falling behind per se. If it doesn't work out, you already have a strong experience in IB on your resume.

You can definitely pitch some parts of starting your own business that you might have done well as experience even if the business doesn't work out. Example maybe you were a good fundraiser but not good operator - that with your IB experience can open up a lot of doors in investor relations or cap intro. If you were good at product development but not sales and marketing, you could look for product management roles.

The point is even if it doesn't work out, you can use it as saleable experience which, with your background, people would be willing to take a shot on. Could also create a differentiated application for bschool if you're inclined towards that path. That could get you back into IB/PE. I'd say rule of thumb is that you should give it an honest attempt for 2 - 3 years. If you're not making money by the end of the third year maybe look into something else.

Good luck, and PM if you have any questions.

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