Pre-MBA Work History:
- I attended a private, Catholic university in the Midwest where the curriculum was focused on asset management and included a student-managed portfolio as part of the university's endowment.
- Alumni through that program helped me land in the analyst class of a $500 billion asset manager that went under during the Great Recession. Fortunately I was gone by then. I sat on a trading desk in NYC and went through the two year analyst class before returning to the Midwest.
- I became an investment banking analyst at a middle market, boutique investment banking firm in the Midwest. I was a generalist and worked on a lot of deals in a lot of industries as this was the years right before the recession. I found the role through my own hometown network.
- I left IB to become a pre-MBA associate at a $150mm middle market PE fund in my same city. We had just raised the fund which allowed us to do 4 investments during my 2 years, which were during the Great Recession.
- I also earned my CFA charter, which is still active today.
Post-MBA Work History:
- After my pre-MBA associate position, I attended business school full-time at a Top 20 school in the Midwest. It was not my top choice, but it did serve me well.
- I did my summer internship at a middle market PE fund on the East Coast. I found the internship through my own network and it was unpaid. The PE fund was upfront with me at the beginning and said they would not be hiring anyone full-time.
- As the PE hiring market was so difficult in the few years after the Great Recession, I used business school to shift from M&A Finance to Corporate Finance. After graduation, I joined a Fortune 500 manufacturer in a leadership development program. I rotated quarterly through different functional areas for two years. After I completed that program, I joined Global FP&A within the company.
- Within 6 months of working in FP&A, I was recruited by a head hunter to join a middle market FinTech company in my city that had just been acquired by a PE fund. They had just started to build out their finance and accounting department. I started as the Director of Finance and over 3 years built out the full finance and accounting function: systems, team, processes, reporting. I worked very closely with the CEO, founders, and PE fund on a daily basis. I left there as the SVP of Finance.
- I left the FinTech company because I was recruited from there with a really good offer. I became CFO of a middle market MarTech company in my city that had been acquired by a PE fund. The company needed a finance and accounting department to be built. I am in the midst of doing that and am enjoying it very much. I work closely with the PE fund.
- I've finally figured out my career path. I plan to work for PE backed companies to get them to a successful exit. Rinse and Repeat. I am 37 years old.
I can answer questions about shifting career focus and the differences between each (Asset Management to IB to PE to Corporate Finance), networking and interviewing, making strategic career moves, exiting gracefully, getting an MBA, earning a CFA charter, dealing with rejection and failure, general career and professional development advice, importance of mentors, or anything else on your mind.
Do you want a 1 on 1 mentoring session with me? Here's my mentor profile - click here.
@AndyLouis and @WallStreetOasis.com