Help needed - Confused about Career

I don't know if this is the right forum to post given that I have been in India all my life and most WSO users are from the USA.

Like most Indian kids with a decent education opportunity, I am an engineer who took up a job as a software engineer. I got bored of the meaningless coding and decided to go for an MBA.

I quit my job and joined my family's business. My family has been operating an accounting firm for the past 20 years. The firm is involved in taxation and project financing. While preparing for the B-school admission test, (India's equivalent of GMAT), I took up an accounting course (India's equivalent of CPA in the USA). The idea behind taking up this course was to understand my family's business better. After completing two out of three levels of this accounting course, I made it to one of the best B-schools in India.

After my MBA, I worked at a boutique investment bank. I liked the work though the culture was horrible. During the 6 months at the IB, I witnessed about 15 out of 20 employees quit the firm because of the pathetic culture (over-aggressive unsound bosses). I left the job around a year back and started a venture to teach students for the B-school admission test. I made decent money though I have realized that teaching isn't what I want to do all my life. When I was not teaching, I was working in my family's firm (building models, writing IMs, assisting in audits). My contribution has significantly improved the quality of documents and models being made in the firm.

So to summarize, I have been a software engineer who quit to be an MBA who joined an IB and finally started a venture which, in all likelihood, will be closed down. During this journey, I toyed with accounting and worked on-and-off at my family business.

My family has been really insistent that I join the family business and complete the accounting degree (the final level is due next year). The family business generates revenue that is 25x (yes!) my IB salary. Minus the auditing and taxation part, I'll be doing almost the same kind of work that I did for my former employer though the amount of work is really negligible. For most time of the day, I am reading and writing random shit on the internet.

At this juncture, I am again toying with the idea of searching a job. I know it's almost impossible to get into an IB (or any firm) with this roller-coaster background. I feel I am not utilizing myself to the fullest in my family business. Plus being in the late-20s and being grown up by the family isn't the best feeling in the world.

What do you suggest I do? Search for a job? Stick to the family business?
Also, will somebody even hire somebody with as varied a background as mine?

Help! Help!


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Comments (3)

Nov 18, 2012 - 10:29am

Wow, that is a really, really interesting story.

If you enjoyed investment banking, it may be worth trying to get back in at this point. Here's my reasoning. The family business will always be waiting for you. There is only a small window in which you can really re-enter investment banking. Right now, you can describe your interval job teaching the GMAT as something you are doing on the side as you explore investment banking opportunities. If you were to move on to something else, like working at your family's company, it will be harder to later explain your time away as a mere sojourn.

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