VP Lateralling - What am I doing wrong?

Hi fellow monkeys,

Let me try to explain the situation.

Currently working for a mid-market fund in a HCOL city. I have been trying to lateral for the past 12 months to UMM/MF and had interviews with great names (think like Apollo, Blackstone, KKR, Carlyle type of places).

For some reasons I can't seem to land an offer despite great feedbacks and going most of the time until the last round (good deal flow, exposure and understanding, great responsibilities etc...) for every firms. I always asked for detailed feedback and one common theme that seems to stand out is "We definitely think you can do the job but we are keen to bring someone with higher branding/more traditional tier 1 IBD background". I must admit, it's frustrating to hear but that's business I suppose.

In terms of background, it's true, I don't have a stellar profile, worked few years in tier 2 IBD before doing a year of Corp Dev before being in current role. I suppose this isn't very shiny for the website or team profile but is there anything I can do to improve my chances or am I doomed to stay in MM?

Thanks !


That's awful but also super common especially with prestige-driven megafunds - had some first round interviews where they explicitly told me at the end that they were enthusiastic about my prior industry experience + fit with strategy, look for next steps, and then ghosted. I suspect it's due to more senior members offering quick opinions about your background that you can't really get away from.

Thoughts on "rising star" MM / UMM firms? bunch of MM funds that are rapidly growing AUM I'm sure are way more focused on your execution experience and won't ding you for not having HBS on your resume, but maybe that's not what you're looking for.

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Well, let's say you nailed it about the 'senior members offering quick opinions'. Definitely what happened with the latest opportunity when I asked feedback. The team thought I would be a great fit and do well but some MDs or Head at the top mentioned they wanted a more traditional background. Again, frustrating to hear but hey what can you say apart from nodding? 

I am not against exploring raising star MM or UMM but those opportunities are quite rare at the moment (perhaps even more in my vertical). Also and let's be honest, the fund raising environment makes it even harder than it used to be.

I will keep grinding and carry on contacting head-hunters, although those guys are the worst plague ever... Latest one (same guy from Dartmouth) contacted me for a role I explicitly told them twice that I am not interested to hear about. 


Current firm is okay-ish, culture is good, WLB is fine (too much in my opinion) but comps is below peers. Latest fund is struggling a bit but on recovery path but ultimately the prospect of the next fund is not looking great due to latest fund perf (although the previous funds did super well) and tough fund-raising environment.

I am in my forth years at my current firm. 


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