👩🏻💻 A Journey to Venture Research Analyst
Job search is a marathon. I have been searching for the right opportunity for months. I want a job that I am genuinely excited about. A job I can jump out of my bed every morning and get inspired.
I interviewed for so many different roles, including product manager, data scientist, chief of staff/venture associate, strategy and operations, etc. Because of my diverse skill set, I thought I can do anything.
The truth is, I don’t know what I want to do.
Every time I received an interview for an interesting job, I got pumped and screamed. I did my homework, researched the opportunity, wrote detailed answers, and recorded my answers again and again. From 250+ applications, countless interviews and coffee chats, I learned
I can grow to any direction, but the question is, which direction do I want.
I stumbled upon a research analyst position at SignalFire, a data-driven VC firm. I fell in love with that opportunity, because it would allow me to continue my passion for data-driven recruitment (The firm has a proprietary recruiting platform!). Unfortunately, I did not get the job (sorry for them 😉). This interview, however, opened a new world for me. I began learning about Research Analyst positions at VC firms.
I wanted to know what I want. I *thought* I should be a PM, and I had numerous mock interviews including ones on 9 am Sunday morning. I got drawn to prestigious VC firms like GGV and had two calls with them. I even got interviews for senior product manager positions and passed three rounds of interviews with DigitalOcean.
A friend told me later: Follow what you’re curious about versus what you think you should do.
By journaling my good time, I reflected on what I want. I really enjoyed learning new things. I was in flow when I did the research for a VC assignment, and I engaged less in building a COVID-19 app. From these reflections, I knew I wanted to become a venture capitalist more than a product manager.
An a-ha moment came in the Grand Quest, in which I wrote down my values and stared at the non-negotiable value. My definition of success is a wealthy investor. I could not move my eyes from that, because I did not feel comfortable with it, even though there was nothing wrong with it.
Later, there was an exercise called mind-mapping. The first two activities in which I was engaged, energized, and in flow are researching VC thesis and doing math. Research analysts at VC firms perfectly combine these two activities.
The right opportunity knocked at my door when I became clearer about what I want. First Republic Bank’s VC team opened a new position for a research analyst. The manager has worked with more than 500 firms and helped new VC firms raise money from Limited Partners. I knew I could learn from him and the team to develop a bird-view point of VC industry.
When I got an email of congratulations, I knew the right opportunity came. I vibed with all interviewers and I wanted to work with them. Even though I had other exciting interviews in the pipeline, I decided to take the offer. From this journey, I learn to be honest with myself, accept my wants, and live by my values.
P.S. I am so lucky to have a lot of wonderful human beings around me. They gave their hands to me when I was down. They selflessly mentored and believed in me. My friends told me not to give up when I wanted to. I could not make it without my communities, friends, and parents. I know this is just the beginning of a new chapter, but I really want to say, thank you. I can’t be who I am today without you.