Big Tech --> VC/Growth advice

Hi WSO - I've worked in big tech (think FAMGA) since graduation ('17). Went to a top 10 US UG, currently working in product, was previously in corporate strategy (got to work on an acquisition in 2019). I would like to transition to the investment side for my next role; ideally in early stage VC, open to Growth Equity. Not super interested in Seed (not a good fit), or in Buyout (not a good fit; not a banker). 

If anyone has experience making this transition, or has peers who have, I'd love to hear any and all advice. I am just now starting the process. Some avenues I'm considering searching; headhunters, job postings on John Gannon Blog & Linkedin, casually networking with friends of friends on the buyside. What else would you recommend? How are my odds given my background? I'm fine with going to a tier 2 fund, it doesn't have to be Sequoia or a16z. Thanks! 

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Comments (4)

Mar 5, 2021 - 5:03pm

You're on top of things.

There's a shit ton of luck involved. I would also try and build your own dealflow (through building relationships with founders at seedish companies) so that way you can build relationships with partners at larger firms and demonstrate you can source good deals.

  • Prospect in VC
Mar 5, 2021 - 5:12pm

How would you go about starting those conversations? I have heard this advice before, but if I'm a founder, why would I want to meet with me? What value does that conversation offer the founder? 

Most Helpful
Mar 8, 2021 - 12:13pm

Good q. 

You could start by going deep on an operational area you're familiar with, or a specific investment thesis and blogging about it. 

Let's say you have a new thesis on XYZ space and write 4-5 posts on it. Maybe you even build connections with industry participants and interview them. Or, you write about SEO growth tactics and what works at the seed stage because it's an area that is unknown and fascinating to you. Or, based on a thesis, you do the VC legwork to map out companies and list the most interesting ones in your posts that lay out your market thesis.

Then, you could email founders and others and say "Look at what I wrote/did" and it will astronomically increase the chances of them talking to you.

Given your background, you'll be able to get interviews in a year or two if you do it well/built your network. I've seen folks do this without your elite PM background go on to work for Tier 1/2 firms, but they're disciplined and put in a ton of hustle, and are were very thoughtful on how they built their online brand to get into venture.

Whatever you do, just don't start a fucking podcast.

Mar 5, 2021 - 7:53pm

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