I was 43 years old when I
decided I wanted to start my own company. I had worked in the strategy group of
a major multinational. I was trained through the traditional training schemes
but I never had responsibility for a profit and loss account or a major
operating unit. I have a young family, mortgage, and aging parents. This was a huge
decision for me. My friend suggested I talk with some people before I decided
to leave my job.
The headhunter said it would
be a wrong move for me. He said it would take me out of the corporate market and
I wouldn’t be able to return. Another headhunter said the exact opposite and
thought this would enhance my CV. A VC who is friends with my wife said I didn’t
have the experience and thought I was risk-averse. I took a bunch of career and
psychological tests; they were inconclusive.
I couldn’t make up my
mind. I was paralyzed in terms of decision-making. I went to a FinTech
conference and met a really impressive serial entrepreneur. I asked her advice
and she looked me in the eyes and asked, “Where’s your passion? What’s your commitment?
If you had these, you wouldn’t be going around in circles.”